Why We Need Tears

A young woman is crying and wiping her tears away with a tissue and her hand

We usually only think about tears when we are crying as part of our body’s emotional response to a certain situation or laughing so hard that our eyes begin to water. While tears might typically be far from our minds, the truth is that they are actually a vital part of our eye health. In fact, there are several types of tears and various reasons that we need them to maintain healthy eyesight throughout life.

Tears Protect Our Eyes On A Daily Basis

Did you know that tears protect our eyes on a daily basis? Each eye has a special tear film that creates a barrier between the eye’s vulnerable surface and outside irritants, allergens, and germs. This protective film consists of three different layers. The mucous layer sits directly on top of the cornea, the aqueous layer consists of saltwater and is the basis for our tears, while the outer layer is oily. Together, all three layers help our eyes stay lubricated and clean throughout the day. In fact, with every blink, the protective film creates tears that wash microscopic debris and irritants from our eyes, keep our vision clear, and help our eyes stay comfortable in a wide variety of conditions.

Tears Keep Our Eyes Comfortable And Offer Emotional Benefits

The aqueous layer of the protective tear film creates both reflex and emotional tears. These two types of tears have numerous benefits. As their name suggests, reflex tears are our eyes’ natural response when they need to flush out debris and other irritants. Emotional tears help to clear out stress-causing chemicals. In fact, this is why we often cry when we are faced with emotional situations. Together, reflex and emotional tears help our eyes and bodies find relief in a wide variety of circumstances.

Too Many Tears or Dry Eyes? The Florida Eye Specialists Are Here To Help

Are your eyes constantly wet or overflowing with tears? Or perhaps you have the opposite problem and dry eyes are causing you discomfort. Dry eyes can occur from allergens, abnormal tear production, as a response to medication, with age, and for other reasons. Dry eyes can not only be uncomfortable, but they can lead to other eye issues. The good news is that Florida Eye Specialists are here to help. To cure your dry eyes, and ensure that your vision is healthy, be sure to schedule an eye appointment with the Florida Eye Specialists at one of their eight conveniently located locations throughout Jacksonville, Saint Augustine, and Palatka.