What is the Impact of Hormones on Dry Eyes?

What is the Impact of Hormones on Dry Eyes?

What is the Impact of Hormones on Dry Eyes?

What is the Impact of Hormones on Dry Eyes?

What is the Impact of Hormones on Dry Eyes?

February 28, 2024

Dry eye can be caused by a variety of factors, including age, certain medications, and environmental conditions. But what many people don't realize is that our body's hormones can also play a significant role in the development and severity of dry eye. This is particularly true for women, who are more susceptible to dry eye due to hormonal changes that occur throughout their lives.

The Role of Hormones in Our Body

Hormones are chemical messengers that travel through our bloodstream, influencing virtually every aspect of our body's functioning. They help regulate our metabolism, immune system, growth and development, and our mood and stress levels.

One key role of hormones is in regulating the body's hydration levels and the production of various bodily fluids – including the tears that keep our eyes lubricated. When our hormone levels are balanced, our eyes are typically able to produce a sufficient amount of tears and keep dry eye at bay. However, when our hormones are out of balance, it can disrupt this process and lead to dry eye.

How Hormones Can Cause Dry Eye

The lacrimal glands, which produce the majority of our tears, are sensitive to hormones. When hormone levels are balanced, these glands can function properly. However, when hormone levels become imbalanced, it can disrupt the functioning of the lacrimal glands and lead to a decrease in tear production.

Estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone all play a role in tear production. Imbalances in these hormones – such as those that occur during menopause – can lead to a decrease in tear production and result in dry eye.

Additionally, the meibomian glands, which produce the oil component of tears, are also influenced by hormones. An imbalance in androgens – a group of hormones that includes testosterone – can affect the functioning of these glands and lead to a decrease in oil production. This can cause the tears to evaporate too quickly, leading to dry eye.

Prevention and Lifestyle Changes to Mitigate Dry Eyes

While hormonal imbalances can contribute to dry eye, there are steps you can take to mitigate their impact. This includes lifestyle changes and preventative measures that can help maintain balanced hormone levels and promote eye health.

Firstly, maintaining a healthy diet can contribute to balanced hormone levels. Foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids, such as fish and flaxseed, can help support hormone production and decrease dry eye symptoms.

Secondly, regular exercise can help regulate hormone levels and improve overall health. Regular physical activity can also promote better circulation, which can help the eyes produce more tears.

Lastly, it's important to manage stress, as chronic stress can lead to hormonal imbalances. Techniques such as yoga, meditation, and deep breathing exercises can help reduce stress levels and promote overall well-being.

How East Main Vision Clinic Can Help

At East Main Vision Clinic, we understand the significant impact that hormonal imbalances can have on dry eye. We take a comprehensive approach to diagnosing and treating this condition. Our team of experts has extensive experience in managing dry eye. We work closely with each patient to develop a tailored treatment plan that addresses their specific needs and circumstances.


Hormones play a significant role in our body's functioning, including the production of tears. With a comprehensive understanding of the impact of hormones on dry eye, effective treatment options, and preventative measures, it is possible to manage this condition and maintain good eye health. 

If you're experiencing symptoms of dry eye, consult with our professionals at East Main Vision Clinic in our Puyallup, Washington office. Call (253) 780-0700 or text (253) 785-6580 to discuss dry eye treatment options or to schedule an appointment today.

East Main Vision Clinic