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The eyes are the windows to the soul they say. They’re also windows into the world. We depend on them a little too much and rightfully so. Properly functioning eyes is how humankind has survived all these years.
We need our eyes to see the food we are about to eat, to walk the roads we are about to take, to see our loved ones, and to appreciate this world’s natural beauty. Strained vision can cause a lot of issues for us. In fact, one indicator that someone has a vision impairment is frequent and painful headaches that might resemble migraines.
So when it comes to the eye, issues must be taken with extreme caution and care. That’s why eye drops are an essential piece of medication to have in your household, and here are the reasons why.
Eye drops contain a saline base ingredient that acts as a sort of lubricant for your eyes and in some cases a replacement for natural tears. They help keep your eyes moist and to calm any redness you may have developed in the eyes.
There are many uses of eye drops other than the conventional usage of moistening your eyes and making sure that they are not dry from heavy screen use. Although this is one of the largest uses of eye drops it is not the only one.
Other uses of eye drops include using them to numb the area before a surgery, or even for when one has allergies that have started to act up. Allergic reactions can often cause irritation in the eyes and eye drops are used to help calm down the irritations and soothe any possible inflammation that might have occurred in the area.
Eye drops are also used as effective means of cleaning out the eyes. It is possible that a foreign object may have entered and made its way into the eye area. If this is the case there may be severe irritation and pain in the eye that doesn’t seem to go away.
The patient may have an urge to rub the eye, however, this would only increase the irritation. Examples of irritants include dust and broken eyelashes. Normally in these cases, the eyes' natural tears would help clean out the eye area. However, sometimes the tears are not enough, or there may be scratches that may have been created in the eye due to rubbing at the eye. In this scenario, the saline eye drops would work best to not only clean out the area but also to heal it.
Some infections may also require antibiotic drops, however, it is best to use them on a doctor’s recommendation. Eye drops are also used in eye exams for dilution purposes. Finally, eye drops can also be used as a means to treat glaucoma.
As the above examples have shown there are multiple uses for eye drops and you can use the eye drops that best alleviate your specific issue. Many of these eye drops can be used liberally and usually do not require the consultation of a doctor. However, if the irritation and discomfort do not go away then consult a doctor before you proceed further.
Sarwat Makkani, MD
Yanelquis Torres, MD
Fabiola Baptiste, NP
Raga Mohamed Ali Osman
Sipra Talvikki Autio