Tips for Choosing the Best Artificial Tears

December 1, 2014 -- "Dry Eye" symptoms are actually quite common in the general population. They increase with age and are generally worse in women. The Foundation has reported on the incidence of these symptoms in people after LASIK, wearing contact lenses or just wearing glasses. 

When selecting drops, a good rule of thumb is if you only need them once or twice a day, select a multi-use preserved drop with a top which comes off and on so it can be reused over a few weeks.


If you routinely need drops 3 to 4 times a day, a non-preserved drop in single dose vials would be best. This is because the preservatives are actually toxic chemicals placed in the bottles to kill bacteria and fungus so the drops can be safely reused. However, as the eye gets more dry, the toxic chemicals are not washed away effectively causing irritation or damage to the ocular surface. Neither single use or preserved drops should be used more than 4 times per day, as they actually wash away some of the good things around the eyes.


If non-preserved drops do not provide relief when used 4 times a day, a prescription medication may be helpful. With severe dry eyes other treatments can help. A future article will cover these treatments.

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