A water droplet

If tears are running from your eyes but you’re not crying, you have watery eyes. What might be making this happen? Join us today as we discuss this ocular issue.

What is causing my watery eyes?

Watery eyes can be triggered by any number of issues. You might have something in your eye, like an eyelash or a small piece of dirt. Or your eyes may be dry and creating excessive tears to treat them. You could also have an outwardly- or inwardly-turned eyelid, or an ingrown eyelash.

You may have allergies that irritate your eyes. You may also have a blocked tear duct, an eye infection, a stye, chronic sinusitis, a cold, or a corneal scratch. More seriously, you may have an eye injury, may have been exposed to chemicals, or are reacting to medication you are taking.

How do I treat watery eyes?

To stop the wateriness, you must first treat the underlying cause. If you have allergies, try avoiding the allergen in question. If that isn’t sufficient, eye drops with decongestants and antihistamines could help. If you have a cold, over-the-counter medicine may help with the symptoms while your body heals.

If you have dry eyes, artificial tears might help lubricate your eyes and stop the flow of tears. If your tear ducts are blocked, your doctor can help unblock them. If you have a stye or chalazion, apply a hot compress to your eye to try and get it to go away on its own. If it doesn’t, see a doctor for more treatment options. If you have a corneal scratch, an eye doctor can determine if it will heal on its own or if you need additional treatment. An eye infection also warrants a visit to the doctor, since they will determine what treatment you need and prescribe medicine if you need it.

Brent Warren, MD

Eye irritation may just mean a stray lash is in your eye, so rinsing out your eyes may help. However, it could also mean something larger or potentially more serious is stuck in your eye and needs removal by a doctor, CEENTA Ophthalmologist Brent Warren, MD, said. It could also mean an ingrown eyelash is rubbing against your cornea. A doctor can treat an ingrown eyelash.

Similarly, if your eyelid is improperly turned, a doctor can treat that, too.

If you hurt your eye or it’s been exposed to chemicals, or you think you’re reacting to medicine, see a doctor immediately.

Regardless of what is making your eyes water, remove your contact lenses if you wear them. Contact lenses can aggravate your eyes.

There may be a wide variety of potential causes for watery eyes, but an eye doctor can help find the exact issue. If you have any concerns about your eyes, don’t hesitate to make an appointment at CEENTA.

This blog is for informational purposes only. For specific medical questions, please consult your physician. Dr. Warren practices in our Statesville office. To make an appointment with him or any of CEENTA’s eye doctors, call 704-295-3000. You can also schedule an appointment online or through myCEENTAchart.


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January 04, 2020

I have what looks like tiny warts on my eyelids. From what I have read I cannot have a wart (unless it is a pap something wart or it would be a stye). They are NOT pimple-like protruding warts. They are not on the part of my eyelid I would get a stud from either. They are just tiny bumps that do not itch or hurt...they are just ugly as I seem to be getting more as time goes on. Is there anything I can do or is this just “aging bumps” with no treatment???
- Joy Herb

January 06, 2020

Good morning. We cannot diagnose specific medical cases without seeing the patient. If you live in the Charlotte area and would like an appointment with a CEENTA doctor, call 704-295-3000. Thank you.
Reply From: CEENTA

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