burning eye

Why are my eyes burning?

Burning eyes, it’s not just painful, it can also be a signal to your body that something is wrong.  Usually, this condition indicates underlying problems like pink eye, dry eye, allergies … These are some of the leading causes of burning eyes:

1. Dry eye

This is an eye condition caused by changes in the quality or quantity of your tears. Tear films are what keeps your eyes moisturized. There are three parts to it, a lipid (oily) layer, an aqueous layer, and a mucin layer. When an irritant affects any part of your tear film, your tears will evaporate quickly, causing your eyes to feel irritated and dry. If you are suffering from dry eye, you are unable to produce sufficient tears to keep your eyes comfortable. Consequently, you will experience burning eyes accompanied with a scratchy feeling. If left untreated, dry eye can cause considerable damage to the surface of your eyeball. You are advised to consult your optometrist if you experience this symptom.

Dry eye is a condition that can affect anyone although some people are more predisposed than others. Factors that make some people prone to dry eye condition include menopause, aging, medical conditions like arthritis, use of certain medications like antidepressants, oral contraceptives, antihistamines and beta blockers. Finding a pair of  dry eye eyewear can be a huge help in combating this problem.

 

2. Environmental factors

Burning eyes can stem from environmental irritants like smog, smoke, mold, dust, airborne chemical irritants, certain chemical irritants like chlorine in a swimming pool, pet dander, sun exposure, fragrances like perfume, cologne or burning incense, hair spray, and pollen. These elements will make your eyes burn if you are allergic to them. Even the weather can affect your eyes. Too hot, cold, dry, or windy and your eyes might be prone to burn.flowers

 

3. Eye strain

If you experience burning or itchy eyes, there are high chances you have eye strain. Eye strain is not a permanent condition. You can resolve eye strain by making a few adjustments to your routine. When using computer screens people tend to blink less frequently, thus exposing the eyes to strain. You can take regular breaks when using digital devices like computers or wear specialty computer glasses which block blue light.

4. Condition-related causes

Burning eyes, besides being an eye condition, it is also a symptom of other conditions like Wegener’s GranulomatosisRosacea, Pink Eye, Photophobia, Blepharitis, Meibomian gland dysfunction and Sjogren’s Syndrome.

5. Age

A symptom of ageing is that people’s bodies start producing less oil. This reduction in oil production affects the tear layer, making tears evaporate faster. This leads to the formation of dry spots on the eye. These dry spots cause various symptoms, burning eyes being one of them.middle aged woman with burning eyes

6. Medications

Intake of particular medications can cause various reactions. This is why it is important to report to your doctor any burning sensations in your eyes following the use of certain drugs. Your caregiver will then advise you what medication you should try next to that will not expose you to burning eyes as a side effect.

7. Bright Lights

Fluorescent light, incandescent light, and sunlight can cause blurry vision and discomfort to eyes. People who are sensitive to bright lights feel the urge to close or squint their eyes and may also experience headaches as well. You can use light filtering shields to protect yourself from bright lights if you experience any of these symptoms.

8. Contact Lenses

If contact lenses are not properly maintained, the wearer might experience burning eyes and other vision problems. Burning eyes after inserting contact lenses are attributed to physical irritation from lenses that are either damaged or do not fit properly. If contact lenses cause your eyes to have a burning sensation, you should consider leaving them out and using your backup glasses. Be sure to see an ophthalmologist. They will advise you which lubricating solution and/or rewetting drop that is compatible with your contact lenses.

Now that you know what might be causing your eyes to burn it’s time to take the necessary steps to ensure your eyes’ health.