If you ask us, watering eyes are one of life’s greatest annoyances. Common in the middle of summer when the air conditioner is pumping, or in the middle of winter when the heater is on full blast, for some people, watery eyes occur often and can be completely distracting no matter what else is going on. Anyone who wears makeup or sunscreen will likely have experienced them when they’ve got some product in their eyes, and if you wear contacts, they may be a regular occurrence. But what does it mean when your eyes water for reasons other than contacts, dry air, or makeup?
According to the New Zealand Eye Institute, watering eyes occur when your body produces too many tears or there is a problem with your tear drainage. Though it is natural and healthy for your eyes to produce tears to keep themselves moist and clear of dirt and debris, excessive tears could be the result of something else.
Allergies are a common reason for watery eyes
Allergies are one of the most common reasons for watering eyes. “Your eyes are sensitive organs out in the air all day long, coming into contact with many different kinds of substances,” Dr. Joel Hunter, founder of Hunter Vision, told SELF. It could be an allergic reaction, or your eyes could simply be responding to something in the air that’s blocking the tear ducts, such as pollen or dust.
Another factor that could be making your eyes water is actually your computer screen. Mayo Clinic believes this is because you strain your eyes and blink less when you stare at a screen all day, which ultimately dries out your eyes and causes excess tear production.
Watering eyes could also be caused by an underlying medical condition
SELF lists sleep apnea as one of the main reasons your eyes may water so much as it is common that those who suffer sleepless nights also suffer floppy eyelid syndrome. Floppy eyelid syndrome basically means you sleep with your eyes partially or fully open. We can’t imagine how dry the eyes of those affected must be, and how many tears need to be produced to make up for it later. Healthline suggests that other medical conditions that lead to eyelid inflammation (such as pink eye and styes) could also be the root cause.
If you have watery eyes and can’t figure out and eliminate the cause, a visit to your healthcare provider is in order, as they can help you determine and fix the issue you’re having.
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