Not having enough tears (dry eye) is caused by a lack of one or more of the substances that make up tears.
Symptoms of dry eyes include:
- Feeling like there is something in the eye.
- Tearing or burning (or both).
- Dryness in the eye (a hot, sandy feeling).
Symptoms may get worse at the end of the day and in drafty, dry, smoky, or dusty environments.
Dry eye symptoms can be especially bad in people who wear soft contact lenses. Soft lenses absorb water from the eye surface and make the eye dry. Dryness may lead to patchy loss of cells in the cornea. Trying a different type of lens may help the problem.