Why Your Eyes Feel Gritty and Itchy

Dec 1, 2023 | Dry Eye Syndrome

Are your eyes feeling itchier lately? Do you keep rubbing your eyes or using eye drops? Itchy eyes are a common issue, and while they could be caused by allergies or an infection, the biggest culprit is dry eye syndrome. The good news is that dry eye syndrome can be managed with the right treatment. In this blog, we’ll talk about this condition, its symptoms, causes, and ways you can find relief.  

What is dry eye syndrome?  

Our eyes need tears to stay healthy and comfortable. Dry eye syndrome happens when your eyes don’t produce enough tears or when the tears evaporate too quickly. As a result, your eyes might get red, swollen, and itchy.  

Other symptoms of dry eye syndrome include sensitivity to light, blurry vision, watery eyes, and a burning, stinging sensation in your eyes. Some people with dry eye may also feel like there’s something stuck in their eyes or have trouble wearing contact lenses. Over time, this condition can lead to inflammation on the surface of your eyes. If left untreated, severe dry eye can damage your cornea and lead to permanent scarring or even vision loss.  

What causes dry eye syndrome?  

There are many causes of dry eye syndrome such as aging, hormonal changes, certain medical conditions like diabetes and thyroid disorders, and some medications. If you’re taking medications for allergies, depression, or high blood pressure, you may be at a higher risk of developing dry eye syndrome. Environmental factors such as smoking, air conditioning, and wind can also contribute to dry eye syndrome. 

How to treat dry eye syndrome 

Treatment for dry eye will vary depending on the severity and cause. For mild cases, lifestyle changes may be enough to provide relief. These may include using a humidifier to add moisture to the air, taking regular breaks from screens, avoiding smoke and windy areas, and staying hydrated. You can also use over-the-counter eye drops to help lubricate and soothe your eyes. 

If your symptoms persist or worsen, it’s important to schedule an appointment with your eye doctor. They can perform an eye exam to figure out what’s causing your dry eye symptoms and suggest the best treatment plan for you. Our eye doctor, Dr. Nicole Lemoncelli, at Lemoncelli Eyecare in Nashville specializes in diagnosing and treating dry eye syndrome. If you’re diagnosed with dry eye, she’ll develop a personalized treatment plan, which may include prescription eye drops to reduce inflammation, blinking exercises, or treating oil glands.   

If you’re tired of dealing with dry, itchy eyes, reach out to us today to schedule an appointment.