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Thyroid and Dry Eyes: Exploring the Relationship

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The thyroid glands are responsible for producing and regulating hormones that help maintain metabolism and energy balance.

Imbalances in the functioning of the thyroid gland can lead to various symptoms such as weight gain, Anxiety, etc.

Some of these symptoms might also lead to eye discomfort.

Dry eyes, an eye condition, are considered to be a common symptom of thyroid disorders.

Some studies suggest that individuals with thyroid disorders are more likely to have dry eyes.

However, the exact relationship between dry eyes and thyroid is quite complex.

Let us proceed with this article and explore the relation between thyroid and dry eyes.

As we mentioned earlier, dry eyes are a common symptom of thyroid disorders.

This is because thyroid disorders can lead to certain autoimmune diseases, which might affect the eye cells. 

In autoimmune diseases, the immune system mistakenly targets and damages healthy body cells, sometimes including those in the eyes. 

According to a study published in Clinical Ophthalmology, there is an increased risk of dry eyes in thyroid patients.

Therefore, it is advised to undergo eye examinations at regular intervals to avoid Dry Eye Syndrome if you are diagnosed with thyroid disease.

If you are experiencing dry eyes, seek your eye doctor for effective dry eye treatments

They will prescribe effective dry eye medication, such as eye drops, for the management of the eye condition.

In some cases, doctors may also advise following home remedies or taking fish oil and vitamins to manage the eye conditions.

If you wish to learn about supplements for dry eyes, read Supplements for Dry Eyes: A Comprehensive Guide to Relief.

Relation Between Dry Eyes and Types of Thyroid Disorders

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Closeup of dry eyes

Both types of Thyroid disorders, Hypothyroidism and Hyperthyroidism, might also cause dry eyes.

Let us understand the relation between dry eyes and the types of thyroid disorders in brief..

Dry eyes caused due to thyroid disorders can be treated after consulting with an eye doctor.

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  • Hypothyroidism and Dry Eyes

    Hypothyroidism is the condition when the thyroid gland produces inadequate thyroid hormones. 

    This condition might also be caused due to Hashimoto’s disease.

    Muscle fatigue and weight gain are the common symptoms of Hashimoto’s disease.

    However, it might also lead to some eye-related issues due to the possible inflammation of tear-producing glands near the eyes.

    Hashimoto’s disease is also linked to Sjögren’s Syndrome, which is found to have dry eyes as its symptom.

    Apart from Sjögren’s Syndrome, people with other medical conditions, such as blindness, might have dry eyes as a symptom. 

    If you want to know more about the link between blindness and dry eyes, read Can Dry Eyes Cause Blindness: Potential Impact on Vision

    Sjögren’s Syndrome is a disorder that leads to a disruption of the salivary and lacrimal glands.Hashimoto’s disease is an autoimmune disease that blocks the thyroid gland, leading to less production of hormones.

    Hyperthyroidism and Dry Eyes

    Hyperthyroidism is the overproduction of thyroid hormones by the thyroid glands.

    The excess of hormones such as thyroxine in the body can disrupt the balance of tears in the eyes.

    Hyperthyroidism is also linked to Graves’ disease, an autoimmune disease that affects the thyroid gland.

    A possible complication of Graves’ disease is Thyroid Ophthalmology or Thyroid Eye Disease (TED).

    In this condition, the tissues around the eyes might get affected, leading to inflammation and swelling.

    This leads to Proptosis, which results in bulging of the eyes and pulled back eyelids.

    Proptosis causes improper blinking of the eyes, which is a vital process for keeping the eye clean and smooth.

    The disruption in blinking can lead to the development of dry eyes.

    Dry eye symptoms can worsen during airplane flights due to the low humidity in the cabin air.

    Thyroid Eye Disease Treatment

    Doctor approvedSource: Syda_Productions
    Consult a doctor

    Although Thyroid Eye Disease is the secondary symptom of thyroid disorder, the treatment of TED is not the same as thyroid treatment.

    Therefore, you need to seek specific treatment for TED from a trustworthy eye doctor.

    Most thyroid disorders cause mild eye symptoms, which can be treated using artificial tears and lifestyle modifications.

    However, in severe cases, your doctor may prescribe eye drops or oral pills to manage TED.

    If eye drops and pills are ineffective in managing TED, doctors might recommend laser therapies or surgeries.

    Avoid smoking, as is found to significantly worsen the progression of TED.


    Dry eyes are commonly associated with thyroid diseases.

    This is because thyroid imbalances lead to autoimmune diseases, which in turn affect the eye.

    The eye disorder caused by thyroid complications is called Thyroid Eye Disease (TED).

    However, the exact relationship between thyroid and dry eyes is still a matter of discussion among researchers.

    Both overproduction and underproduction of hormones may disrupt the normal balance of tears in the eyes.

    It is best to consult a licensed ophthalmologist for your eye condition.

    Depending on the severity of your condition, they may prescribe various treatments.

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    Frequently Asked Questions

    How do you know if your thyroid is affecting your eyes?

    If you experience symptoms such as dry, itchy, red eyes or any eye-related discomfort along with a pre-existing thyroid disease, it is possible that your thyroid is affecting your eyes. Consult a doctor for proper guidance and diagnosis.

    Will treating the thyroid also cure dry eyes?

    No, treating the thyroid does not necessarily treat dry eyes as well. Even though both these disorders are related, they have separate treatment options. It is required to take a doctor’s consultation to treat dry eyes

    Can thyroid medications cause dry eyes?

    No, thyroid medications do not directly cause dry eyes. However, some thyroid medications may cause side effects that may lead to certain dry eye symptoms.

    Are dry eyes hyper or hypo thyroid?

    Dry eyes can be a symptom of both Hypothyroidism and Hyperthyroidism. Both these types of thyroid disorders can lead to autoimmune disease, which affects the functioning of the eyes, leading to dry eyes.

    Can thyroid cause dry eyes and mouth?

    Yes, thyroid disease might lead to dry eyes and dry mouth. This is because the imbalance in hormone production affects a variety of functions in the body, which may also include the eyes and mouth.

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    Photo of author Janet Fudge
    Janet Fudge is a highly skilled and experienced pharmacologist who serves as a contributing writer for With a strong academic background from a premier US University and a passion for helping others, Janet has become a trusted voice in the pharmaceutical world. After completing her Doctor of Pharmacy degree, Janet embarked on a successful career in the pharmaceutical industry, working with various clients, including hospitals, retail pharmacies, and drug manufacturers. Her in-depth knowledge of pharmacology and dedication to patient-centered care has led her to excel in her field. As a writer for, Janet uses her wealth of expertise to provide readers with accurate, reliable, and up-to-date information on various topics related to medicine and healthcare. Her engaging writing style and ability to break down complex topics into easily digestible content make her a valuable resource for healthcare professionals and the general public.
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