The answer is yes, dry eyes can cause blurry vision. This is because when your eyes are dry, they result in an unstable ocular surface, which means that they are not properly lubricated, causing your vision to be blurry and making it difficult for you to see clearly.

Symptoms of dry eyes

The symptoms of dry eyes include watery eyes, irritated eyes, and a feeling of having a foreign body in your eyes. All of these symptoms can contribute to your symptom of also having blurred vision. However, it's important to understand that blurry vision can be caused by a variety of other eye conditions. In order to properly diagnose your symptoms of blurry vision and dry eyes and to determine what the best course of treatment is for you, you should schedule an appointment with our eye doctor. Following a diagnosis of the cause of your symptoms, our eye doctor will discuss different ways to prevent dry eyes and ensure a healthy tear film and ocular surface.

Can computers and phones cause blurred vision?

When we use a computer, phone or tablet we blink less frequently and less fully. Every time you blink fully or the more frequently you blink, the ocular surface is coated with a fresh layer of tear film. When you do not blink fully or frequently your tear film evaporates which can lead to your vision becoming blurry. If you actively blink and your vision becomes clearer again, this is a strong indication that your blurry vision is caused by evaporative dry eyes. If your vision changes even when you are not on a computer or phone for extended periods of time, then we recommend that you schedule an appointment right away to ensure that your symptoms are not related to anything more serious. If you have any of the other symptoms associated with dry eyes such as red, painful, tearing, gritty, or dryness, call your eye doctor so that they can properly diagnose, treat, and manage your condition.

The two are not necessarily connected

Blurred vision can be a symptom of dry eyes, but it can also signal other, potentially more serious, eye problems. Glaucoma, age-related macular degeneration, cataracts, and diabetic eye disease are among them.

Other conditions that can cause blurry vision include rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, and Sjogren's syndrome.

You should seek immediate help if you develop symptoms such as severe headaches, loss of muscle control on one side of your body, facial drooping, or difficulty speaking, in addition to blurry vision.

Can blurry vision lead to double vision?

In some cases blurry vision may lead to seeing double, especially when one eye is experiencing more blurring than the other. The way our vision works is that our brain takes the images of both eyes and combines them to create one image, when one eye has vision that is blurrier than the other eye the resulting image that our brain creates comes out double. In some cases people may mistake the symptom of blurred vision as double vision. Because there are many causes of double vision, we recommend scheduling a functional vision exam which is a more detailed evaluation that looks at the brain's control of the eyes, the ability of the eyes to work together, and the processing of visual information.

Take the double vision symptom assessment to better assess the cause of your symptoms.

Ways to prevent blurry vision

In order to prevent blurry vision and dry eyes, you can take a number of steps.

Among them are:

  • Keeping hydrated
  • Wearing sunglasses when out in the sun
  • Keeping away from smoke or dust
  • Installing a humidifier in your room
  • Limiting your screen time
  • Sleeping for seven to eight hours at night
  • Limiting the usage of AC or heaters
  • Making sure to take a break every 20 minutes from using a computer to focus on something 20 feet away for 20 seconds.
  • Making sure that you are blinking frequently and fully when using a computer or phone for extended periods of time.
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