Drinking Water to Help Your Eyes

Increased Hydration May Improve Your Dry Eye Symptoms

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Dry Eye Syndrome (DES) is a multi-factorial disease state with many possible symptoms and several causes. At Cavanaugh Eye Center in Overland Park, we see several patients a day with chronic dry eye. Whether the patient is here for LASIK, cataract surgery or general exam, DES can affect your vision and cause problems with ocular comfort.

Common symptoms of dry eye include:
Fluctuations in vision
Burning
Red eyes
Excessive tearing
Gritty or “foreign body” sensation
Light sensitivity
General eye discomfort and inflammation
While the current humid air typically helps patients who suffer from DES, current research suggests that hydration may also play an important role in ocular surface disease (dry eyes). With the heat index in the triple digits, it is very easy to become dehydrated by spending time outside.

Kahn and his colleagues from the Midwestern University Arizona College of Optometry found that patients who increased their intake of hydrating fluids for one week had improved tear layer health and a decrease in evaporation of tears. What does this mean? A more stable tear film and improved lubrication of the eyes.

This study facilitators admit that the sample size of the study was small and more subjects and a longer course of the study is needed, however we now have some supporting data that correlates what we already knew. Dehydration can affect your entire body!

So grab a glass and drink up. Cheers!

– Dr. Jaynes

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