How Dehydration Impacts Your Eyes


Intense summer heat takes its toll on even the strongest body. Sitting in the sun, standing in amusement park lines, exercising outdoors, or trying to catch an outdoor concert are all common places where people forget to compensate for the amount of fluids lost through sweating and can become dehydrated.

Did you know that dehydration can also impact your eyes year round?

It’s true. If you are going through a spell where your contact lenses are struggling to stay in place or are no longer comfortable because your eyes are so dry, a good question to stop and ask yourself is if you are getting enough fluids.

Dehydration Symptoms

I’m a fitness instructor and one thing I know about dehydration is that symptoms like thirst are not a sign that you may be on your way to dehydration, they indicate that you are already there. In fact, most of the population fails to drink the amount of water it needs to function well. So, commonly, a high proportion of people exist on the verge of partial dehydration every day.

If you feel like your skin is dry, your lips and mouth are dry, and you feel insatiably thirsty–these are some of the first symptoms. Remember, your eyes are just like all the other organs in your body and they will also show symptoms resulting from the lack of body fluids.

Effects of Dehydration

When you are dehydrated your eyes also lose the ability to make tears. It’s fairly obvious that your eyes need to use your body’s moisture in order to cry. But, it’s not just your inability to respond appropriately to that sad movie that is impacted when tears can’t be produced. You need your tear ducts to work properly to help you clear out your eyes from any debris, mucus, or dirt specs floating in the air that accidentally find there way into your eyes. Tears wash away the foreign objects in order to keep your eyeballs nice and clean.

How Much Water Do I Need?

So, how do you know if you are drinking enough water? Generally, the rule is that you want to drink eight glasses of water eight times a day. Although other studies show that you may need even more than that. If you are exercising, especially in hot conditions, the best rule is to replenish one ounce of fluid for every minute of your workout.

If more fluids still doesn’t help you beat your dry eye problem, talk to your optometrist at your closest America’s Best retailer and see if he can recommend some eye drops to help keep them moist.

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