Of course we had to dive deeper into this one because so many of you with dry eyes don't realize that you could prevent much of your dryness by drinking more water! Did you know that you should be drinking half your body weight in ounces of water per day? That's 75 ounces of water for a 150 pound person.
If your intake is not as high as it should be, consider purchasing a reusable water bottle that you can fill with filtered water and carry around with you throughout the day. Your eyes will thank you!
Remember that, by definition, dehydration occurs when there is a significant loss of body fluid that impairs bodily functions. Said a different way, dehydration is when your body is not getting the water it needs to function, and this occurs when you're not intaking enough water during the day. When your eyes are not receiving proper hydration, the lacrimal glands have a tough time functioning to produce tears and the meibomian glands cannot produce healthy oil. Whether you believe it or not, your eyes are an extension of the rest of your body and water plays a huge role in their ability to function at an optimal level.
5 Best Dry Eye Treatments
Following a proper eyelid hygiene routine is a great way to prevent blepharitis, meibomian gland dysfunction, and dry eye disease. After removing your makeup, wash your face with tea tree oil soap and pat dry. Then, cleanse your eyelids with a gentle hypochlorous acid cleanser. This substance is naturally made by the body to fight microorganisms, and it's great for eyelid cleansing because it's nontoxic and simple to use.
If you've read or listened to any of our other work, you know that we're big fans of replacing your breakfast with a green smoothie. Most people are eating inflammatory foods for breakfast (cereal, bacon, pancakes and waffles, dairy, and more). These can all contribute to further inflammation in your body and are doing you no favors. When you have a green smoothie instead, you're flooding your body full of nutrients and hydration first thing in the morning. There's no better way to get your energy up and start fighting inflammation!
You were probably wondering if I would mention this. Of course! Hydration is so important for the eyes. By drinking half your body weight in ounces of water daily, you can help prevent dry eye disease in some cases. At the very least, you'll have more energy and know that the cells in your body have what they need to function properly.
Studies have shown that omega-3 supplements may be beneficial for those with dry eye disease. More specifically, if you know you're deficient in omega-3 (many of us are!) you can up your intake of wild caught fatty fish such as salmon or anchovies. However, if you're not a fish eater, supplementing with a triglyceride based omega-3 supplement in the ratio of 3:1 EPA:DHA can be beneficial.
You may think I'm joking, but stress plays a large role in your body's ability to fight inflammation. Cortisol, the stress hormone, helps regulate inflammation in the body. But when you are chronically stressed and have a chronically high level of cortisol, your body will begin to ignore it. It will not longer use cortisol for fighting inflammation, and inflammation will increase. This is why we see so many people who suddenly notice dry eye symptoms after a stressful event in their lives. Make sure to incorporate things you love into each day. Meditation, yoga, long walks, and journaling can all be beneficial as well.
3 Best Eye Drops for Dry Eyes
We don't recommend eye drops often, but they can sometimes be beneficial. The following are a few we love.
This artificial tear is preservative free and is a true solution that keeps tears on the eye surface to relieve the irritation, gritty, sticky-lid sensation that is commonly experienced with dry eye disease. It comes in 30 vial packs and can be used day or night. Oasis is only available through eye doctors' offices nationwide.
This is a great lipid-based, preservative free artificial tear that we've recommended for years. It utilizes electrostatic attraction to stabilize the tear film and help protect against moisture loss. It's a great eye drop for those who suffer from meibomian gland dysfunction, and it also comes in 30 sterile vials per pack.
This non-preserved artificial tear is the first of its kind to include flaxseed oil in its formulation. Omega-3s have been shown to be beneficial for the eyes when ingested, but Refresh has taken it a step further and put omega-3s into their eye drops. Each pack comes with 30 individual vials.