The causes of dry eye can be multifaceted, however, it is known that people tend to produce fewer tears as they age due to hormonal changes. It is possible for both men and women to get dry eye. However, it is more common in women—especially those who have gone through menopause as a result of the hormone changes.
Here are some other causes of dry eye:
- Certain diseases (e.g. Rheumatoid Arthritis, Sjögren’s syndrome, thyroid disease)
- Entropion (when eyelids turn inward) or ectropion (eyelids turn outward)
- Being in smoke, wind or a very dry climate
- Looking at a computer screen for a prolonged time (reduced blinking occurs)
- Prolonged contact lenses wear
- Having refractive eye surgery (e.g. LASIK)
- Taking certain medicines, such as:
- Diuretics (water pills) for high blood pressure
- Beta-blockers, for heart problems or high blood pressure
- Allergy medicines (antihistamines)
- Sleeping pills
- Anxiety medicines
It is important to discuss your medication with your ophthalmologist as it can effect your eyes.