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Greetings and may you all have a merry and festive new year!

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  • Greetings and may you all have a merry and festive new year!

    This is my first time here. I am a 47 yo male in PA and have had dry eye issues since I can remember. Perfumes and hair spray nearly did me in as a kid. Watching tv as a kid irritated my eyes...which was probably a good thing. Kept me outside and getting into trouble instead of inside and getting into trouble.

    In the last ten or so years, my eyes have gotten much worse. I have tried drops and lubes of all kinds. What I think works for a bit turns out to not work at all. I am eyes are happiest.. working outside. I have a humidifier for my house in the winter and I have vents turned in directions so I get no direct air. works pretty well. Also no AC in the summer. AC is very hard on me.

    Actually I have found the best thing for my eyes seems to be intense physical exercise. Maybe it is the sweat or something....but a good workout...usually working on my house, laying and cuttingn stone, constructing an addition, new roof.....stuff like that works like a charm. Short term though...within a day or two, they are back to terribly dry...2 or less on the shirmer test.

    I am really considering finding a property on some small caribbean island. The weather there is fantastic for my eyes. Lots of humidity and wicked good scenery.....great hiking and fishing areas too.

    Well, I rambled enough. It is very nice to finally find a place where people understand this condition. A very hard condition to understand....not like a broken leg, stitched up head or something readilly seen to others.

    So there is my intro. If anyone has any great suggestions or non-traditional methods that make life easier or just wants to say hhi, I'd love to hear from you.

  • #2
    First, Welcome!

    Second, Happy Holiday season to you!

    Third, I find that I feel best during my vigorous exercise (usually running, cycling, or rollerblading). Afterward, some of the environmental stuff sets in that, I suppose, the endorphins helped to overcome.

    Fourth, Make sure you have rental cabins on your Caribbean property. I'm there.

    Finally, I presume you're soliciting a list of home rehab projects from all of us, since--as you've said--they help to make your eyes feel better



    • #3
      Hello Twist

      Welcome Twist! You have found a great place to share your stories and your dry eye problem. First off, my husband and I are ready to move to Belize, (Ambergris Caye to be exact) basically because of the same reasons you mention. He has no dry eye problem, but is glad that mine might give him the excuse to escape this climate (Virginia) and move to the Caribbean. I am sorry you have to deal with this, but we could all be worse off than we are.
      AC/Heat/wind/someone's breath in my face - anything! - makes it all bad. I have had great results with the oil supplements and the drops from the Dry Eye Zone. Believe it or not, I have not yet had to use my humidifier this year so far, because of the DEZ drops. Hang in there! You will find some great ideas on this site that might work for you.


      • #4
        Hi Twist, and welcome!!

        You have been dealing with this for an awfully long time. It must be hard to see it getting worse over time. Out of curiosity is there any auto-immune condition causing or contributing to this? Have you ever been tested for Sjogrens Syndrome?

        Originally posted by twist
        If anyone has any great suggestions or non-traditional methods that make life easier or just wants to say hhi, I'd love to hear from you.
        My first suggestion given the severity of what you describe is protective eyewear if you're not already using it. As you'll see from some of my other posts I'm a big believer in this, either as a preventive measure or for those times when symptoms are already out of control. For years I knew people who wore them but never thought my dry eye was "bad enough". Then I tried them and - well, the quality of life improvement was definitely measureable. Check out the forum on wraparounds/moisture chamber glasses for more info.

        Next suggestion, scour the archives of this forum, and also have a look through our basic FAQ pages with lists of different types of treatments and symptom management. There's a lot of good information to be gleaned from past discussions. We file old discussions in the topical forum archives to make searching easier.

        Another thought... it's a long way to come, but we're having a series of dry eye workshops near Tampa in February with both medical and practical content. It'll be a great place to both get useful scoop on treatments and connect with other veteran dry eye patients. Details are here.
        Rebecca Petris
        The Dry Eye Zone


        • #5

          Hi Twist and welcome,

          We have a lot in common I think rehabbing my house takes my mind off the eye problem and accomplishes something worth while in the end also. I keep telling friends and family it is the unknown sport. I have always considered Mexico for retirement ( I am 47 also) and I love remodeling houses, cabins or any other type of dwelling. Maybe there is a business opportunity here we could call it the "Dry eye resort a place to rest your tired eyes"


          • #6
            by Jeff: we could call it the "Dry eye resort a place to rest your tired eyes"
            I would be very happy to give that name to my circa 1932 cottage and would love to have y'all renovate your hearts out. Your eyes could feel great for a very long time . For a treat I'll take you to the Harley Davidson Dealer in Ann Arbor to try on goggles and visit Chris.

            Welcome to Dry Eye Talk, Twist!

            "People may not always remember exactly what you said or what you did, but they will always remember how you made them feel." ~ Unknown


            • #7
              Mexico retirement plans

              Now we're talking. I'm 51 and LOVE Mexico. Anywhere warm! I'll bet you could start building/renovating down there and make a nice little profit selling to retirees heading south.
              Any hot tips on where to go....I'm all ears!


              • #8
                Oh, and how gorgeous is Cindy's little "cottage?" My eyes always feel better there. I love visiting.

                For doing any work to rehab the cottage, you might consider climbing safety-type ropes because the house sits on a steeeeeeeep incline/hill. When shall this begin? I'll be the note taker and list maker.
                Don't trust any refractive surgeon with YOUR eyes.

                The Dry Eye Queen


                • #9
                  [QUOTE=Cindy]I would be very happy to give that name to my circa 1932 cottage and would love to have y'all renovate your hearts out. Your eyes could feel great for a very long time . For a treat I'll take you to the Harley Davidson Dealer in Ann Arbor to try on goggles and visit Chris.

                  Hi Cindy, I' m currently doing my little house in the woods(this is a MAJOR project) I bought it so I would have something to do. There were three college kids living there and none of them were self motivated apparently.

                  I am picturing a small cabin nestled in the woods high atop a mountain (thanks Lucy). Tiki torches are strategically placed out in the front yard beyond the huge wooden deck, Jimmy Buffet on the sattelite radio (great reception anywhere and they carry the Margarittaville station). Mexican food and somthing to drink. How am I doing? Is this what you had in mind?

                  Permission granted for the name change on your cottage.
                  I reserve the rights for a Mexican resort though.

                  jcorbett: I am currently on the phone trying to sort out the hurricane damage on the Riviera Maya. I am fond of a place called the Iberostar Tucan, white sandy beaches and excellent food and beverage top notch service and a shower on the beach to rinse the salt water off after a swim in the ocean, or a pool if you prefer. Kayaks, Catamarans, and SCUBA its Heaven on Earth.


                  • #10
                    Jeff, I'm going to keep Cindy's "cottage" well guarded from outsiders. Your description was good, although this is not a cabin, but a darling little cottage/house. It is lakefront and well---that's enough. I could live there with my hubby all year around with no problem.

                    I'm not sure if she has tiki torches out front, or is it back? There is a fairly large deck overlooking the lake. Looking down is not advised. (Cin, do you have tiki torches?) Is that like what they use on Survivor?

                    Jeff, now that all of our snow is gone, it's just a mud hole, huh? Three weeks ago, we had beautiful, fluffy, deep snow. Now we have rain, mud, and sloppy ground. Not sure if she has Jimmy Buffet, but I like old Jim. I went to Margaritaville a couple of years ago in Jamaica. He wasn't there, darn.
                    Actually, she has her own in-house band. Her hubby has a r&r band and is very good. He'smuch cuter and younger than Jimmy Buffet, too.

                    Are you just "looking" at this resort thing and calling------or are you going to spring from this winter and really go? Just had to ask. Sometimes we Michiganders just "think" about a vacation and that's enough. You know how it is when you look anxiously for your weekly mail delivery! Be watchful of sharks if you really go. I will have my own shark body guard when I go to Tampa.
                    Don't trust any refractive surgeon with YOUR eyes.

                    The Dry Eye Queen


                    • #11
                      Hi Lucy,
                      I'm sorry, the description I was giving for Cindy's cottage was what I was going to convert it to. When I am done it will be a quaint little cabin in the woods with a large enough deck for all of us here as DEZ to attend. Sirius is a brand of sattelite radio they recently signed Jimmy Buffets radio station called Margarittaville and they now broadcast that (24/7) for all to enjoy commercial free. I bet we can find some Tiki torches at a garage sale on the way down. The rest of us can provide the ambience just by being there.

                      As for the Resort thing Yes, I am quite serious about that. I enjoy Mexico more than snow and my last vaction was spent in the hospital. I am long overdue and I think I am deserving. As for sharks you are lucky if you see one, the rule is simple don't wear "yum-yum yellow" and the sharks won't eat you (they say wearing yellow makes you taste like chicken). We have a loose agreement on that.


                      • #12
                        many thanks

                        to what seems like a great group! It's finally good to find people who can actually appreciate the trying times such an odd condition can produce.

                        Well, kinda burned out after a long day at work. Gotta go cook up some grub.

                        I'll be back with lots of inquisitive thoughts some time.



                        • #13
                          Iberostar Tucan

                          Jeff - Last place we went to on Riveria Maya was the Barcelo Maya. Boys (ages 13 & 14) loved this place, particularly because of the water basketball hoops and water soccer nets. This occupied them for HOURS and HOURS. Do you happen to remember if the iberostar had basketball hoops?? Such a little thing....but I cannot consider a place without them!
                          The downside to B.M. was it is about an hour plus from Cancun and my husband gets very sick of being stuck in a resort. The nightlife really sucked. Not that I cared, but we must be respectful of others wishes

                          And a cottage by the lake in the summer doesn't sound too shabby either. Don't forget me!! Wisconsin isn't THAT far away!!


                          • #14
                            Welcome Twist

                            I just wanted to welcome you to the site and hope you find some relief, all I can offer is to read the posts and try as many different kinds of drops and methods you can until something works for you. You may not find complete relief but if it helps a bit then do it. I do warm compressed day in and day out, I use a variety of drops from GenTeal, Restasis, ReFresh Plus and other artificial tears. Dry eye sucks and its difficult to deal with especially when you have other eye trouble a long with the dry eye, like this FK I've been dealing with, never knew what it was until Dr. G told me it was FK, its where you have these stringy mucus things coming out of your eyes all the time and its gross and hard to deal with. Anyway's welcome and Happy New Year. Ciao D


                            • #15
                              things that make me go ouch

                              Ok.... I have been observing what has a negative effect on my eyes for at least 40 years. I have really been ovserving for the past 15 years and would like to share and receive input from others to see if they have similar scenerios and if they do, what works for them.

                              1. I notice my eyes getting very dry and irritated if my blood pressure rises. I do not have high blood pressure. But...if I become anxious or tense, I can feel my blood pressure rise and a corresponding increase in dry eyeness...or I guess that would be eye dryness. This has been confirmed with blood pressure checks a few times.

                              2. VOC's. Any volitile organic compund such as paint stripper, hair spray, most perfume.....hydrochloric acid.(not a voc)......the minute I come anywhere within scent of such a thing, my eyes dry up. Actually, my eyes usually dry up before I can smell it.

                              3. Driving. Now this one seems odd. I keep heat off, ac off and windows up. I can drive about 1 hour...maybe 1.5 hours and my eyes become so dry I can hardly stand it. I can't tell if it is because there are so many focus changing events.....anyone else experience such an odd thing?

                              4. Trains......If I watch a train go by my eyes go dry instantly. Now that seems very strange....but is very true. It may go along with the driving thing.

                              5. The conditioned air seems to do me well as ceiling fans. I hate the little buggers!

                              6. And here is the odd thing. I can be outside all day in all kinds of weather...wind...rain...sleet....snow....blisterin g heat....and at worst my eyes feel slightly irritated. Unless there is a lot of dust in the air. Exception is if I go to the desert......Very dry and hard on my eyes.

                              I can control my environment most of the time so for now I am ok....but degrading each year. Very frustrating. Most drops do next to nothing....some actually seem to dry my eyes out more.

                              I do not have dry skin is dry in the winter and my lips chap easilly. Once my eyes get very dry, that's it. I get foggy feeling....can't think clearly....and have to basically go somewhere humid, close my eyes and sleep for an hour or two. That is it. The rest of me seems in stellar health. I don't get it.

                              The eye drs don't either. very frustrating.

                              Sooooooooo.....anyone have similar stories...scenerios? Please share them if you do. If so, any products, practices or remedies you have tried that work or ease the pain.

                              Thanks very much. It is so hard to get a handle on this and each year it gets more difficult to keep myself in good spirits.


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