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Avatar universal

Burning Eyes, Aggressive blinking, very heavy around the eyes

Hi All,

I have scoured the internet to find a solution to my problem, many have had similar symptoms but nothing spot on to what I have... anyways here goes:

For the past say 7-10 years..cant remember exactly.. I am now 30, (no idea how it started) I have dry sore eyes (not so much red, just very sore and dry) that feel like they are burning, not just heavy blinking but full face blinking almost, I don't just blink I squeeze my eyes closed tightly, constantly and all around my eye (eyebrows and cheeks) constantly feel extremely heavy and droopy to the point where I feel constantly tired.

I have been to several doctors who always just give me eye drops like visine or similar (yes I have tried the ones with and without redness reduction) I have also been to see an optometrist thinking it may be just bad eyes (although I have 20/20 vision) I was given a pair of glasses as it was found I have a stigma, but this has not helped either.

It is really embarrassing, and I cant control it... I am honestly starting to think it may be a tick like some form of tourettes or something like that! but highly doubt it.  I find that if I am stressed it gets really bad, or if I have had a few drinks (booze) then it goes crazy and the symptoms just multiple by AT LEAST by 2.5.

I have tried stress reduction, but that did not work and we all know you cant completely eliminate stress. I have tried not drinking for a few weeks, that also did not work.  I also used to smoke and had the symptoms before and after I stopped.

I also thought it may be bacteria in the ducts (cant remember the medical name of this but the way to resolve it was to place hot towel on your eyes and massage to break it up in the ducts) this also did not work...

I have tried to force my eyes to stay open with my finders but I cant hold it more than 10 seconds before they really start to burn and water up and I do not get much weeping from the eyes either (at any time)

I also have sleep apeona, this often makes me tired but I do get some days where I sleep amazingly but still have the symptoms... I cant work out if it is just a habit I have formed or if there is something medically wrong with me... I just would like some direction on how to tackle it or if anyone may be able to shed some more light on this for me. even with all my concentration, I find that it just happens and I cant stop or control it.

I am really getting desperate now and cant afford to keep seeing doctor after doctor until one actually spends some time looking into it more, at least this way I can tell them what I think it may be (with your help) and let them know where to start.

Any help would be greatly appreciated and if more info is required, am happy to provide it.
Thank you
14 Responses
711220 tn?1251891127
I would recommend a cycloplegic refraction (check for glasses with dilation), if normal get a referral to a neuro-ophthalmologist.

Dr. O.
Avatar universal
Hello Rob.  My name is Roy and I came across your post today and it was like someone was describing my life.  I have the exact symptoms as you do.  All the way down to sleep apnea.  However, I've always assumed that the heavy eyes and blinking were due to being sleepy or fatigued, so I've been attacking it from that perspective.

I’m 5’10”, 175 lbs, so I didn’t fit the profile of a sleep apnea patient, but sleep studies showed mild sleep apnea.  Over the last 10 years or so, I've been to many doctors to address sleep.  Sleep doctors, of course, put me on CPAP, but that didn’t seem to help.  I’ve tried a dental appliance to pull my jaw forward and open the airway.  Also, I’ve visited with an endocrinologist to look for hormonal imbalances and diabetes as an explanation for fatigue (all normal).  I’ve taken numerous supplements (magnesium, coconut oil, B12, St John’s Wort, etc.), but so far to no avail.

I feel tired, but it’s difficult to tell whether sleepiness causes the heavy eyes, or maybe there is an eye problem that is making me feel sleepy.  At one point, it did occur to me that it may be an eye problem so I saw an ophthalmologist.  They also thought it might be the bacterial buildup (blefferitis, I think), so I tried the hot towels, but that didn’t help the symptoms.

In any case, it’s nice to meet someone who is going thru the same thing.  Like you, I keep searching the internet to find a new treatment … still searching. How are you treating your sleep apnea?  What are your next treatment plans?

Look forward to hearing from you,
San Antonio, TX
Avatar universal

It may sound crazy but try changing your diet.

To get specific with this, I am referring to switching to a completely 100% ORGANIC diet. Dramatically reduce how much meat you eat, and when you do eat Organic Grass fed meats if you have to.

Get more omega 3 / krill oil tablets + fish with you. Beware though that a lot of fish have a high mercury content so look into the fish that are generally low in mercury.

Rid your house of all of the toxic household products and have it replaced with 100% plant based natural products. I am referring to items like your soaps, hand washes, dish washing liquid, laundry detergent, house perfumes.

Stop drinking fluoridated water, buy PUREAU water if you can, or invest in a reverse osmosis filter that get rids of fluoride and all other toxic chemicals in the water.

Also exercise everyday, do interval exercise drills, do strength training and stretching.

Finally try be under the "sun" as much as possible to increase your vitamin D levels. Head to a park, the beach, or a bench, anywhere with natural sunlight where you can read a book or just relax.

If you do the all of the above, and follow it as a law; I guarantee your symptoms will improve.
Avatar universal
Hi all,
I too have the same symptoms and it is nice to know that I'm not the only one.  The doctors seem to change diagnosis everytime I go.
Just wondering whether "theuglytruth" has actually had this condition before?
I don't eat processed foods, I hunt my own meet (so yes definitely grass fed) exercise moderate to hard five times a week and live in the country.  I don't drink or smoke and  I grow and eat my own vegetables (no insecticides or introduced chemicals) yet I still have this problem.
For me it seems an accumulation of factors:
Sleep (no Apnea though just can't get back to sleep once woken); and

If I close one eye it seems to help for an extra couple of seconds and that is it.  I'm so sick of blinking
Blinkey Bill
Avatar universal
I started having these same symtoms about 2 month ago. It is so aggrivating. I feel as if its a nervous tic or something. I cant control it, so now i tried to avoid talking to too people or go out in public. When i blink and roll my eyes i notice i also hold my breath and push on the back of my throat. I too have been to the doctors and have had all kinds of blood work done. I have been given anxiety medicine and that doesnt help either. I do have sleep apnea and have had it for years, these symptons just started. I thought maybe it was a reaction to medication. I have takend Monofinil, Adderall and Xanax. Not for very long, since it turns out i am unable to take these medications in my line of work.

I have actually started to record myself when they get really bad so i am able to show the doctors next time i visit. I cannot believe there isn't a thing on the internet about this condition. In the next couple months i am suppose to look for work, how the heck am i to get through an interview acting like this.
Your symptoms sound just like mine, especially the holding the breath/pushing on the back of the throat thing. I'm on similar meds, Dexadrine (close to Adderall) and Celexa (similar to Xanax) so I wonder if that could be a cause. I typically get the hard blinking for a month or 2 at a time, right when the seasons change as another poster commented, so maybe it is allergy related? My eye doctor has recommended Restasis to me, but my insurance doesn't cover it and I don't like the idea that it's a lifelong commitment to yet another medication. Has anyone found any other treatments or solutions?
Restasis doesn't have to be expensive if you use up all of one dropper before opening the next. that will reduce the cost by about 75%.   Restasis is fabulous for moderate or severe dry eyes. My wife has been on it about 7 years and me 2 with spectacular results. Long term problems are not been identified.
Avatar universal
Lurschel, i have the same exact problem, seemed to occur mostly during seasonal change, at first i thought it was allergy related and i tried every remedy out there for allergies but nothing worked, im currently dealing with this issue and im still looking for a cure, if anyone here finds out anything to fix this please be sure to post..
Avatar universal
I have the same problem as all you guys and Im desperate.
Ive tried every drop, got glasses, told I am dehydrated which I think is partly responsible but Im just exhausted by all this blinking. Driving is a hassle as I blink even more as big deep blinks could result in an accident.

Please guys if you find a solution, please share with me.

Avatar universal
Just read your problem on your sore,tired and hurting eyes. I have the same exact same problem with my eyes, it really hurts especially when I drive day or night. I had this problem form over 25 years now I've been to eye doctors and they told me it was chronic dry eyes. They gave me eye drops and all, didn't help at all. I wish there was a remedy or something to relieve the burning in my eyes.
177275 tn?1511755244
To everyone posting on this thread:  If you have a diagnosis of chronic dry eyes and you've used multiple eye drops and been to multiple eye doctors without success read this article:


Almost all of you should be on Restasis. It is the definitive treatment for moderate or severe dry eyes. Go to their website and read about. You use it twice/day for the rest of your life and it takes 6 months to work. HOWEVER it is a miracle type eyedrop. Both my wife and I have dry eyes and we are both on it: her for 7 years and me for one and a half years.  It took us 6 months to see the improvement. Now we never use artificial tears.  It is not expensive since you can use all the medications in a single ampule and it will last 2 days. That will reduce the cost by 75%.   Note also all oral medications for anxiety and depression may cause or aggravate dry eyes.

Avatar universal
Hi everyone, I have the exact same problem, which started a couple of month ago. I'm 33 year old now and in peak of business and it has completely changed my life and is effecting my work. it all started for me when I stared really paying attention to how often I was blinking which I read could be caused by OCD; and shortly after I started e peri ending constant dry eyes, burning of my eyes, aggressive blinking and twitching and getting really tired to the point of wanting to pass out at 4:00pm.

I don't feel it as much when I'm distracted by other focuse requiring tasks and when I distract myself from thinking about it!! but that my mind goes right back to thinking about it In just a few seconds again.

I really don't know what to do, I'm just so desperate also as many of you are based on what I've read. good to also know I am not the only one around experiencing this. I would really appreciate any advise or update any of you may have.

Avatar universal
Just made an account to write up this as this problem has been killing my life for so many months already.

I've had a very similar problem since Mar 16. It started when I went to get an eye test and got new glasses at an Optometrist.

I wore the new glasses for a week and rang back to advise of the pain my eyes were in that made me blink constantly. I was then advised to persist in wearing the frames 'as my eyes were still in the adjustment period'.

A week later I went overseas with the glasses and was having all the symptoms said:

- Heavy eyes
- Eyes always feeling sore and burning
- Constant/aggressive blinking because of the above
- Long and sometimes squeezed blinks
- Etc.

In the foreign country I got another eye test because I believed the new glasses I got had the wrong prescription in it giving me all these problems.

It turned out that they added Astigmatism in my glasses at a power of 2.5 (I never had this before in my previous glasses).

Got new glasses with Astigmatism at 0 and eyes almost immediately felt better from wearing the new glasses, and less strained.

However, a few weeks later after I came back home from the holiday the symptoms came back again.

I went to a specialist and was advised I had Blepharitis (currently on Doxy at 50mg a day – it’s been a week so far and it’s not doing anything) and Dry Eyes.

I was also instructed to use eye drops 3 times per day and daily eyelid cleans (baby shampoo on eyelids during shower etc.) but it doesn’t seem to help my symptoms at all one bit.

I’m at a loss on what to do now as it is affecting my daily life – can’t drive properly (as long blinks could cause an accident as mentioned above), can’t work properly as cannot open eyes properly to see computer monitor, harder to go through interviews when I’m constantly blinking etc.

However, one thing I’ve noticed is that when I’m in the gym exercising – my eyes feel almost normal, I don’t blink a lot and am able to train normally without looking like Blinky Bill. Not sure if this is to do with the air in the gym, the sweating or whatever.

If anyone has found a solution for this problem – please let us know!
I have the same exact problem. It’s so embarrassing!! I work in a bank and have members asking me all the time if my eyes are okay. I’ve had this happen before but this time it is way worse and persisted way longer. I have made up my mind now that I need to see a doctor. When I was young, I was told that my tear ducts wer or something along those lines. I asked my mom but she doesn’t remember. I don’t know if it’s an intermittent problem and I am symptomatic to it or if my symptoms are caused by something else but I just know that I can’t tolerate this pain or humiliation much longer. Oh, and I feel like I’ve aged 10 years from the blinking. Haha. Thank you guys for sharing your situations with us because I have hope that I’m not just going crazy. Haha.
When I was young,I was told that my tear ducts were clogged*
Be sure you read this: http://www.medhelp.org/user_journals/show/143745/General-information-on-dry-eyes-tears-dysfunction-syndrome  ;; Also  there is a new dry eye medication Xiidra.
177275 tn?1511755244
Read the above link on dry eyes. See a Eye MD ophthalmologist that specializes in cornea and external diseases.  Ask for some tests to rule out severe dry eyes. If you are seeing an eye MD and not getting better ask about going on Restasis (my wife and I have dry eyes and have been on restasis for years with spectacular results) or the just out Xiidra eye drops. For your blepharitis try Ocusoft Foam Eyelid cleaner PLUS PLATINUM.  You may need to order on the internet as most stores only have the ORIGINAL or PLUS.    If that not help ask your Eye MD about the prescription only Avenova Eyelid Cleaner. See http://avenova.com/
Thanks John - I will check out the above.
good luck
Avatar universal
I don't have an answer to this, but as I read through all of this, I feel connected to each and everyone of you.  The irritation and annoyance of this condition affects my daily life.  I hope that we can all find something that can help us!
Avatar universal
TLDR: Take the advice of Dr. John Hagan above. I got diagnosed w/severe dry eyes and my life has changed for the better.

My suggestion is to get a dry eye test done by an optician/optometrist called the 'phenol red thread test'. I have suffered from the same symptoms described by most here, intense burning, heaviness of my lids, a feeling of persistent dryness and irritation in the eyes and it tends to get worse depending on my stress levels/environment. When it gets really bad, like on a windy day, my eyes begin to water uncontrollably and I have to blink a thousand times a minute. Store bought eyedrops have never helped, no matter how expensive they are. I got my eyes examined and tested and it turns out I have severe dry eye syndrome. Apparently the dryness has been so bad for so long (I'm 24 now) that I have microscopic scratches on my corneas from my eyelids scraping against them :(
I have to say it was kind of a relief that my optometrist could actually see the damage and inflammation of my eyes, like okay cool so this problem isn't just imagined.

Dry eye syndrome is different from dry eyes caused by allergies, and because of this, antihistamines and allergy eyedrops did nothing to sooth my symptoms. The only way I found relief was by using prescription steroid eyedrops (prednisolone) everyday for a month - and wow, after using them a few times the relief was immediate and absolute bliss, my eyes felt 'normal' for the first time in my memory. Once the dryness was under control I switched to an everyday prescription eyedrop that helps increase tear production called Restasis (since long term steroid use can adversely affect your health). Unfortunately there is no generic brand alternative to Restasis, so a three month supply costs me $130 - and that's just the portion not covered by my insurance. To some this might not seem like a lot of money, but to me it is. They come in individual one-use plastic vials and I use each vial twice rather than once. I was told by my optometrist to discard each vial after 24 hours since the open vial is susceptible to bacteria growth. Despite the stupid high cost of them thanks to pharmaceutical companies taking advantage and screwing us over, I really only have high praise since using them consistently every day has given me about 70% - 80% relief. This is fantastic for me since a year ago before getting diagnosed my eyes were SEVERELY negatively impacting my life from morning until night.

I hope this can help move someone in the direction of comfortable eyes. Trust me, I know how frustrating this is, and it's worth seeking medical help for. Good luck.
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177275 tn?1511755244
Kansas City, MO
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Grand Prairie, TX
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