Medications to Avoid
Antihistamines provide much-needed relief of allergy and cold symptoms, like sneezing, itchy, watery eyes, and a runny nose, by blocking the effect of the chemical histamine. Including over-the-counter brands like Allegra, Claritin, Zyrtec, and Benadryl they also reduce the watery tear film that keeps eyes moist.
Nasal Decongestants may be the go-to for easing a backed up nasal cavity, allowing you to breathe easily. But, much like antihistamines, brand names containing ingredients like phenylephrine, pseudoephedrine and oxymetazoline, decrease tear production. In fact, some over-the-counter products contain both an antihistamine and a decongestant—a double whammy!
Antidepressants believe it or not, can interrupt messages meant to signal the eyes and release tears after sensing eye dryness.
Hormone replacements like estrogen have a greater likelihood of developing dry eye, says a study involving more than 25,000 post-menopausal women. According to researchers, participants taking the hormone replacement alone, showed a 69% increased risk of dry eye while those taking estrogen plus progesterone had a 29% greater risk of dry eye than women not taking hormones.