Dry eye is a common condition that many people suffer with from time to time. It can be accompanied by many different symptoms, though the most common ones are scratchy eyes, itching or burning sensations and redness. But can dry eyes cause blurry vision?
In this article, we’re going to look at dry eyes and if they can cause blurry vision, as well as give some tips for alleviating any frustrating symptoms of dry eyes.
Why is my vision blurry?
Changes to your vision can be scary and disconcerting, especially if you don’t know why they’re happening.
If you notice that your vision has become blurry (whether this is sudden or gradual), then there could be multiple reasons why. Sometimes it can point to an uncorrected vision problem (such as needing new glasses) or an underlying eye condition like conjunctivitis, glaucoma or cataracts.
Other causes for blurry vision can be related to other health conditions — including anything from migraines to diabetes to multiple sclerosis (MS). If you notice blurry visions and it doesn’t go away or gets worse in a short space of time, it is best to seek medical advice to find out exactly what is causing it.
Blurry vision can also be a side effect of having dry eyes. If your blurry vision is caused by dry eyes, an ophthalmologist can help you to confirm and treat this.
Dry eyes and blurry vision
Sometimes, blurry vision can be caused by dry eyes. Dry eyes can happen when there are problems with the quality or production of your tears — which help to keep your eyes lubricated and are critical for good vision.
When your eyes dry out because of any problems with tear production, you’ll find it harder to focus your vision, which can lead to your eyesight becoming blurred.
Your dry eyes can be caused by a number of things such as too much digital screen time, harsh weather conditions, air conditioning and even certain medications.
How to get rid of blurry vision
The treatment for blurry vision will depend on the cause of it, so you may have to try a few different remedies before you find one that works for you. Below we’ve covered some of the ways you can alleviate blurry vision if it is the result of dry eyes.
Rest and screen breaks
Your eyes need rest, and sometimes a simple good night’s sleep can help solve your blurry vision.
You want to make sure you don’t spend too much time on digital screens too, as this can lead to blurry vision. If you find that your vision becomes blurred after being on the computer or on your phone, try blinking more, switching off the device to give your eyes a proper break and consider using eye drops to lubricate them.
Hydrate your eyes
If your blurry vision is caused by dry eyes, then hydrating them with artificial tears (eye drops) from the pharmacy could make a big difference.
Alternatively, you can also use a warm compress over your eyes for a few minutes, which can help with dryness.
When your blurred vision is caused by dry eyes, the indoor climate could be to blame. If you’re using your central heating a lot during winter or air conditioning in the summer and find that the air is particularly dry, using a humidifier could alleviate the dryness of your eyes.
Cigarette smoke can irritate your eyes, leading to dryness and blurred vision. If you currently smoke, try quitting — and if you’re around secondhand smoke, try to avoid it as much as you can.
Dry eyes can be caused by allergens such as dust or pollen, and this can lead to blurred vision. Try to eliminate the allergen that is causing the eye problems, and this should alleviate your blurred vision.
Protect your eyes
Finally, if you do go outside when your eyes are feeling sensitive, make sure you wear protective eyewear. Wraparound sunglasses can protect your eyes from hayfever-causing pollen and harsh light from the sun. This could help keep the blurriness of your vision to a minimum, and stop them from drying out too much.
How to protect your vision
When it comes to blurry vision and dry eyes, prevention is key. Taking good care of your vision may help prevent you from experiencing symptoms like blurred vision and dry eyes.
Here are some top tips for protecting your vision:
- Having regular eye exams – these will allow you to keep track of your eye health and catch any developing conditions before they get too bad.
- Wear sunglasses – the sun’s rays can be very damaging to your eyes, so it’s vital that you wear sunglasses when heading outside.
- Wear protective eyewear – keep your eyes protected when doing anything that could pose a risk to your vision, such as DIY or sports like tennis or archery.
- Eat a balanced diet – there are lots of vitamins and minerals that are essential for your eye health. Make sure you eat plenty of foods rich in omega-3s, vitamins A, E, and C.
- Give up smoking – smoking has been shown to increase the risk of eye conditions that affect your vision such as glaucoma and age-related macular degeneration. Quitting smoking is vital for the health of your eyes and for protecting your vision for as long as you can.
When to see an eye doctor
While blurry vision may seem like a simple inconvenience, you should never ignore unexplained, persistent blurriness of your vision or any vision problems that have other symptoms accompanying it.
To ensure your vision is cared for, book a consultation with an ophthalmologist at London Medical if you’re experiencing any eye health concerns at all. Based in the heart of London, our private eye clinic offers first-class care for patients with a wide range of eye symptoms and conditions.