When you're young, you really worry about getting older. "Oh, I'll be so wrinkly!" or "I'll have to go to the bathroom ten times a night." I'm here to tell you, though, that it's not really as bad as all that. Sure, I have my share of wrinkles, but I feel like I've earned them. My knees get tired a little sooner than they used to, and I occasionally have to ask my friends to speak up, but really, I didn't have anything to complain of...
...until dry eye kicked in.
I'm retired now, and I looked forward to finally being able to spend every single day exactly the way I wanted. Travel with my husband, maybe do a little painting, putter around the garden, whatever I pleased.
Actually, it was while gardening that this whole mess started. I was planting some begonias when my eyes started bothering me. Burning, stinging, uncomfortable – I'd never been one for allergies before, but I had no idea what else it could be. I took some of my husband's over-the-counter allergy medicine (his allergies have always been awful!), but to no avail. If anything, they seemed worse!
I went to bed that night, assuming – hoping! – my eyes would feel better in the morning, that whatever had been bothering them would pass. And indeed, they did feel a little better the next day. But, the day after that, that same uncomfortable feeling came back.
Over the coming weeks, the uncomfortable feeling in my eyes would return time and time again. Worse, it actually began to grow more painful. What started as a mild annoyance soon became severe irritation. My eyes felt horrible – stinging, gritty – and they looked even worse – all tired and red.
Worst of all, I could hardly focus on all the fun things I wanted to do. My flowers, my paintings – my eyes were so uncomfortable that it was hard to focus. My vision even seemed less clear than usual.
Eventually, I did a little research online, and based upon my symptoms, it seemed like I might have Dry Eye Syndrome. I read artificial tear eye drops were supposed to help replenish the eye moisture I so badly needed.
Unfortunately, it seemed like none of the drops I tried lasted as long as I needed them to. I'd put them in, and my eyes would feel fine for a while. Before long, though, the extra eye moisture would be gone, and I'd be running back for another dose. Again and again, I'd have to add more. It got to be a big waste of my day, and they still weren't helping as much as I needed them to.
Finally, in desperation, I made an appointment with my eye doctor. A few tests, and he was able to confirm that I did in fact have dry eye. I asked him what could have caused it. He explained that, as we get older, our tears change, drying up faster than usual. Without tears to keep my eyes moist and protected, he said, my eyes were developing painful dry spots. These dry spots were actually causing my tears to dissipate even faster, making the problem worse still.
I told the doctor about my attempts to relieve my symptoms with eye drops, and how nothing I'd tried had lasted long enough. He suggested I try SYSTANE® ULTRA Lubricant Eye Drops. He said that SYSTANE® ULTRA helps provide the eye moisture I needed for comfort and protection, but with a new formula that's long-lasting!
I tried SYSTANE® ULTRA, and to my surprise, they really did provide much longer-lasting relief. For a while, I used SYSTANE® ULTRA a few times daily, until the dry spots healed. Now, I only use it occasionally, those times when my eyes start to feel dry or irritated again. I'll never be rid of dry eye, but at least now I can keep it in check and get back to the things I love.
This is only my story. SYSTANE® ULTRA may not work for everyone, but it helped me, and it may help you.
*Inspired by real-life experiences.Back to the Top