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Eye Irritation

Itchiness, redness and the inability to withstand too much light occur when your eye becomes dry and sore, and this causes irritation. The tiniest speck of dust that enters your eye can make it extremely uncomfortable. As it normally happens on such occasions, tears automatically start flowing, the eye’s self-defence mechanism comes to its own rescue, but if this doesn’t happen and the organ becomes dry, which happens more and more frequently as you grow older, it can cause so much irritation that you can hardly focus on anything else, nay, you can scarcely open your eye. The irritation can also be caused by allergies.

Get the dust out

  • If a dust particle gets into your eye, you need to get it out immediately. First thing you ought to do is to gently pull the eyelashes upward to lift your eyelid slightly away from the eyeball, then try rolling your eyeball around to produce some tears.
  • You can alternately use a sterile eyewash, or gently splash it with water cupped in your hand, or dip it in your water-filled cupped palm and roll your eyeball in it to get the dust out.
  • If you can’t get the above procedures to work, you may buy an eye-bath to clean the dust. It is easily available at medical stores.
  • If you happen to wear contact lenses, quickly remove them and clean them with the normal technique you use, and examine them carefully to make sure that no dust particle is stuck to them before you put them on again.

Soothing the itchiness

  • Place a face-washer soaked in cool water over your closed eye till it feels adequately soothed. This is significantly effective if the redness or itchiness is caused by allergies.
  • Instead of a face-washer, you could even use tea-bags, even it they are used ones. Just soak them in cold water and place them over your closed eyelids for 15 minutes.

Prevention, as always, is the best cure

  • Get enough sleep. Insufficient sleep can cause redness and dryness of the eye, and also lead to swelling of its blood vessels.
  • Having a banana daily can help relieve dry eyes. The fruit is rich in potassium, which helps in balancing sodium content and the release of fluids in the cells.
  • Mix a tablespoon of flaxseed oil to your juice or cereal, which is a reliable source of omega-3 fatty acids and is essential to keep the organ well-lubricated and protect it from dust.
  • If you find your eyes drying up too often, re-examine your medications. The common medicines that cause it are antihistamines, antidepressants, blood pressure pills and tranquillisers.
  • Wear some sort of protectors while doing household chores which raise a lot of dust, like sweeping or dusting.
  • Wear water-proof swimming goggles in a pool with chlorinated water, especially if it is a public pool.
  • Wear sunglasses to protect them from ultraviolet radiation as well as to prevent them from drying up due to the wind, as much as to keep the dust off.
  • Keep away from tobacco smoke, and if you are a smoker yourself, you will find your eyes feeling much better if you kick the habit.

By the age of 60 years, around 60% of men and 40% of women start snoring