Most people experience dry eye at one point or another in their life. It’s rarely serious and can be corrected with simple holistic approach.
People who practice Natural Vision Improvement techniques get rid of their dry eyes naturally. How so? Believe it or not, some of the relaxation techniques we teach such as blinking, yawning, swinging, and palming help the brain (parasympathetic nervous system) to send messages to the tear gland to produce more tears. Read a testimonial at the end of this article.
Dry Eye Symptoms
- A stinging, burning, gritty, or scratchy sensation in eyes.
- Itching and redness
- excessive watering or tearing (The body attempts to solve the problem by making more tears. This results in more tears but not enough of other lubricating components, thus the dry eye problem remains.)
- Blurred vision
- Increased eye irritation or pain
- Difficulty reading for a long period
- A sense of a foreign substance in your eyes
- Stringy mucus discharge in or around your eyes
- Light sensitivity
Common Causes of Dry Eyes
The two primary causes of dry eyes are: (1) decrease in the amount of tears produced; (2) an imbalance in the components of the tear mixture – water, oils, and mucus. Other causes include:
- Long term use of contact lenses – Dry eyes are the leading cause of contact lens discomfort, because they can dramatically increase tear evaporation.
- Habitual eye strain –Staring at a computer screen or reading or absorbed in work that demands high concentration without blinking could cause dry eyes. (about 3-4 times per minute verses the normal about 10-15 times per minute)
- Lasik surgery – It temporarily disrupts the normal activity of the tear film mechanism, may cause many months of mild to severe dry eye symptoms.
- Eye surgery which holds the eyelids open can damage the conjunctiva and destroy goblet cells. This may be the reason so many people experience severe dry eyes after eye surgery.
- Environment – low humidity, high altitude, pollution, first and second hand smoke, dry windy conditions, the use of heaters and air conditioning, flying in an airplane.
- Nutrition – deficiency of vitamin A, Vitamin C, Vitamin B-6, Vitamin E, Magnesium, or Omega-3 fatty acids
- Toxic body – Toxins in the body cause inflammation and decrease in function of the delicate tear film that protects the eyes.
- Dehydration – Not drinking enough water and/or consuming too much coffee or overuse of refined sugar
- Diseases that may be connected to dry eyes are diabetes, migraine headaches, rheumatoid arthritis, thyroid disease, asthma, lupus, and often glaucoma.
- Medication – Some allopathic medications decrease the body’s ability to produce lubricating tears. These include
- Antihistamines, decongestants
- Blood pressure medications
- Appetite suppressants
- Ulcer medications
- Birth control pills
- Certain acne medications
- Visine (over-the-counter eye drop)
- Hormonal changes – Women’s hormonal changes triggered by menstruation, pregnancy, lactation, and especially post-menopausal hormonal changes can cause lowered tear production.
- Age – Tear production decreases as we age. Studies show that dry eyes are experienced by 75% of those over 65.
- Emotion – Your repressed feeling could cause dry eyes because the tear production is induced by your nervous system.
When to Call a Medical Eye Doctor for Dry Eye
You should call your eye doctor if your eyes are itchy, red, and irritated for a long period; if you experience blurred or sudden decreased vision; or if you have pain in your eyes.
How to Heal Dry Eye Holistically
- Blink frequently and softly, The normal eye blinks unconsciously every few seconds. Remember to blink when you are working on a computer or doing a work requiring high concentration. The action of blinking pumps tears onto and across the surface of the eye. Another reason that blinking is an essential part of eye comfort is because the tear film naturally begins to evaporate after about 10 seconds and needs renewal.
- Yawning is especially helpful as it helps the tear glands produce tear.
- Covering your eyes with your palm lightly and breathing deeply with your eyes closed (we call it palming) helps relax your eyes and your nervous system to produce more tear. Palm for 1-2 minutes every 30 minutes of computer work or reading.
- Just like any other body parts, the eye needs water, oxygen and nutrients to function. Drink plenty of water to lubricate your eyes, remove toxins and waste products that could be contributing to poor health and dry eye problem.
- Eat plenty of fresh organic red, yellow, and orange fruits and vegetables as well as dark green leafy vegetables such as kale, spinach, and chard. Organic raw fruits and vegetables are the best food source to achieve proper nutrition and all the essential vitamins necessary for healthy eyes.
- Eat cold-water fish such as salmon twice a week (or take Nutrex-Hawaii Astaxanthin) for Omega-3 fatty acids
- If your feeling is repressed, it could cause dry eyes. Learn to do simple emotional clearing method such as Emotional Freedom Technique.
- Avoid air blowing into your eyes, such as air from an air conditioner or fan.
- Regulate the humidity in your office or home if possible. (35-50% humidity is suggested.)
Testimonial from a 69 years old lady who had severe dry eye syndrome for many years: “Mimi, I want you to know that now my dry eye problem seems to be gone as well as old-age sight. Cannot pinpoint which helped me but I just practiced relaxation (blinking, yawning, palming) and the chart you told me to do for my closeup reading problem. Now I can read menus and smaller prints, and these also helped me to eliminate the need for the medicated eye drops for my dry eyes. I was still wiping off the tears coming down on my cheeks every 20 minutes or so. Then I remembered you telling me to apply YL’s Frankincense essential oil around the eyes. That must helped even more. I have no more tears coming down on my cheeks. Thanks for saving me from both of my eye problems so simply!”
If you need help on your natural healing of dry eyes, contact us at HappyEyesight.
Mimi Shekoski, PhD, Natural Vision Teacher | Holistic Natural Health & Nutrition Doctor