The main signs and symptoms of dry eyes include:

  • Itchiness
  • Grittiness
  • Burning sensation
  • Transient blurring of vision
  • Red eyes
  • Watery eyes

You are more likely to suffer with dry eyes in certain environments (humid, dry rooms for example) and when doing certain tasks, most of which involve staring or concentrating (reading, computer use, driving).

Whilst it is entirely possible to relieve the symptoms of dry eye using over-the –counter lubricating comfort drops it is important to understand and assess if there is any underlying cause for this.

Possible causes for dry eye include age, contact lens wear and side-effects of medications. The most common cause is a condition caused blepharitis (meaning inflammation of the eyelids).

Blepharitis can rarely be ‘cured’ but it is possible to treat the condition in an ongoing manner to relieve the symptoms. In order to know which form of treatment is best it is recommended you seek advice from your optometrist.

Blepharitis and dry-eye treatments involve warm compresses, eyelid cleaning, ocular lubricants and in some cases a referral may be required to discuss topical steroids or antibiotics (eye drops) or in rare cases oral antibiotics.