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Laser eye surgery (LASIK)

Some people have reported experiencing dry eyes after laser eye surgery. Don’t worry, most cases have been temporary dry eyes, however, a small percentage have caused permanent dry eyes. This is usually the result of damage to the corneal nerves, although nerves usually regenerate.

Drinking green tea

A study was created to test how tear production reacts when drinking green tea. Interestingly, tear product appeared to decrease after consumption and could have a significant effect on eye tear film quality. Are you drinking too much green tea?

Blepharitis

Blepharitis, pronounced bleh-fuh-rai-tuhs, is a condition that affects the inner eyelid and causes inflammation (red, swollen and itchy symptoms) around the base of the lashes. It is often associated with rosacea due to the red appearance. It can be caused due to many reasons, such as allergies, mites, bacterial infections, or even cancer. Makeup, such as eyeliner, mascara, eyelash extensions and other makeup used around the eyes can also cause blepharitis.

Ethnicity

There is an epidemic of DED in Asian countries and nobody is entirely sure what the reason is. Is it genetic? Environmental? Or is it a bit of both? Many studies have been done, comparing the eye health of Asians and countless non-Asians. Some experts claim that incomplete blinking due to eyelid anatomy and tension could be the main factor for poor eye health. It is clear that, for whatever reason, Asians have a higher risk of getting dry eye disease and other ocular problems than those who aren’t. African and Latino groups are also vulnerable.

Falling asleep with contacts lens

Closing our eyes for a long period with contact lens applied deprives our eyes of proper oxygen and nutrients needed to create healthy tears and vital airflow. The longer we have them in, the worse it gets and can even cause painful eye ulcers. Since contacts need to be stuck to the corneas (the front clear surface of the eye) to function, this can also use irritation and dryness. So make sure to avoid sleeping with contacts on. This includes taking naps!

Sun exposure

Obviously, everyone loves a bit of sun. We look forward to the holidays we can spend with our family or friends on the beach. Excessive exposure to the sun, whether in direct contact with the sun or not, the heat evaporates tears from our eyes at a faster rate and can leave us exposed. This can cause the corneal surface to become very dry for a temporary period and cause great discomfort. However, it can also turn into permanent damage, including harming our cornea, retina, lens, and conjunctiva. Always bring protective sunglasses and eye drops when planning to be in the summer for a long period. Without them, we are at risk of developing eye conditions such as photokeratitis.

Birth control pills

Long term used of birth control pills has been heavily linked to eye risks, from dry eye disease to glaucoma,  and it is recommended to check eye health regularly. It has been said that cells in the optic nerve contain estrogen receptors and contraceptive pills interfere with hormone levels. Hormone replacement therapy and pregnancy can affect eye health and cause dry eye, however experts are not completely sure how levels of hormones affect our eyes.

Living with smokers

Not only are smokers twice as likely to have dry eyes, non-smokers who share the same space as smokers are at risk of suffering from dry eyes due to secondhand smoke. Secondhand smoke has been linked to eye irritation, conjunctival and sub-epithelial stromal thinning, decreased microvilli and rhino-conjunctivitis. It is said to be also linked to cataract and uveitis, however, studies and reports are yet to surface.

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