The Dry Eye Zone    
FAQ News Dry Eye Encyclopedia About The Dry Eye Zone Contact
Reflex tears

Watery tears that flood the eye in response to irritation.


Reflex tears are of a different consistency and quantity than the basal tears which normally coat the corneal epithelium. They do not have the balanced components that basal tears do and their purpose is to flood the eye in response to a foreign body or irritant.

Severe surface dryness can stimulate reflex tears, which is why watery eyes can be a symptom of dry eye (paradoxical though it sounds). The reflex tears do not have the ability to properly lubricate the surface of the eye - which requires tear components that help adhesion of tears to the eye - so merely having lots of reflex tears does not improve the dry condition of the eye.



links and references

ZONE LINK: Dry Eye FAQ: My eyes are watery. How can they be dry?

ABSTRACT: Basal and stimulated human tear analysis. II. Chemical analysis: lactoferrin and lysozyme. Stuchell RN, Farris RL, Mandel ID. Ophthalmology. 1981 Aug;88(8):858-61

DryEyeZone    Web

The Dry Eye Shop

The Dry Eye Shop

Owned and operated by The Dry Eye Company





The Dry Eye Zone home page The Dry Eye Zone home page