Waking Up With Dry Eyes

What Causes Waking Up With Dry Eyes?

Waking up with dry eyes can have various causes, ranging in severity from 'troubling' to 'needs attention'.  Finding the true cause means ruling out or confirming each possibility – in other words, diagnosis.

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Diagnosis is usually a complex process due to the sheer number of possible causes and related symptoms.  In order to diagnose waking up with dry eyes, we could:

  • Research the topic
  • Find a doctor with the time
  • Use a diagnostic computer system.
The process is the same, whichever method is used.

Step 1: List all Possible Causes

We begin by identifying the disease conditions which have "waking up with dry eyes" as a symptom.  Here are four possibilities:
  • Dry Eye
  • Drug Side-Effects
  • Premature Aging
  • Blepharitis

Step 2: Build a Symptom Checklist

We then identify all possible symptoms and risk factors of each possible cause, and check the ones that apply:
occasionally feeling unusually cold
severe eye discharge
bloodshot eyes
slow reaction time
dry eyes
blue/bluish fingernails
slight abdominal distension
high sensitivity to bright light
regular episodes of diarrhea
increased skin wrinkling
having elevated melatonin levels
loss of interest in activities
... and more than 20 others

Step 3: Rule Out or Confirm each Possible Cause

A differential diagnosis of your symptoms and risk factors finds the likely cause of waking up with dry eyes:
Cause Probability Status
Dry Eye 96% Confirm
Blepharitis 18% Unlikely
Premature Aging 4% Ruled out
Drug Side-Effects 1% Ruled out
* This is a simple example to illustrate the process

Arriving at a Correct Diagnosis

The Analyst™ is our online diagnosis tool that learns all about you through a straightforward process of multi-level questioning, providing diagnosis at the end.

If you indicate sleeping-related problems, The Analyst™ will ask further questions including this one:
How often do you wake up with dry eyes? Do not include dry eyes that are caused by sleeping with your eyes open or partially open (a condition known as Nocturnal Lagophthalmos).
Possible responses:
→ Never / almost never / don't know
→ I sleep with my eyes (partially) open
→ Occasionally - once a month or less
→ Regularly - a few times a month
→ Usually or always
Based on your response to this question, which may indicate eyes (partially) open while sleeping, waking up with dry eyes or often waking up with dry eyes, The Analyst™ will consider possibilities such as:
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Symptom Entry
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