How Long Does It Take for Eye Drops to Work for Dry Eyes?

Jun 1, 2024

Avon Vision Associates 860-677-6444

New Hartford Eye Associates 860-379-7183

Dry eye is a frustrating and uncomfortable condition that many people experience at some point in their lives. It happens when your eyes don’t produce enough tears or the right kind of tears to keep your eyes lubricated. Whether it’s due to environmental factors, age, or certain medical conditions, finding relief for dry eyes is essential. One common solution recommended by eye doctors is eye drops. But how long does it take for these eye drops to work? In this blog post, we will explore some factors that can affect how well eye drops work for dry eyes. 

Type of eye drops 

The time it takes for eye drops to work for dry eyes can vary depending on the type of drops you are using. Artificial tears, which are over-the-counter lubricating drops, typically provide immediate relief by moisturizing and soothing the surface of the eye. You may start feeling better within minutes of using them. However, the effects are usually temporary and may wear off after a few hours, requiring frequent use. Additionally, while artificial tears can help in many cases, they won’t address the root causes of dry eyes.  

Prescription eye drops, on the other hand, are specifically formulated to target the underlying causes of dry eyes. If you are using prescription-strength eye drops, it may take a few days or even weeks before you notice a significant improvement in your symptoms. Our eye doctors in New Hartford and Avon can recommend the best type of eye drops for your specific needs and provide guidance on how long it may take for them to start working effectively. 

The underlying cause of your dry eyes 

It’s important to consider what’s causing your dry eyes when determining how long it will take for eye drops to work. For example, if your dry eyes are caused by environmental factors such as allergies or smoke exposure, simply using eye drops may not be enough to provide relief. In these cases, you may need to tackle the main issue behind your dry eyes while also using eye drops. 

Other factors 

Other factors can also affect how effective eye drops are for your dry eyes. Your overall health, age, the severity of your symptoms, and any existing medical issues can all impact how well eye drops work for you. If an underlying condition is causing your dry eyes, such as diabetes, it may take longer for the eye drops to provide significant relief. It’s important to follow your doctor’s recommendations regarding the frequency and dosage of your eye drops to get the best results. 

If non-prescription eye drops alone don’t provide sufficient relief, schedule an appointment with our dry eye specialists in New Hartford and Avon. Our experts provide a range of treatment options to help you relieve discomfort and improve your overall eye health. You may need to try several different treatments such as prescription medications, light therapy, or special contact lenses for dry eye. Book your exam today and let us help you find the right treatment for your needs.