If you have a problem with constantly watering eyes it is usually because of excessive tear production or poor tear drainage.
Our bodies produce tears to keep the eyes lubricated and to help remove any foreign bodies. However, when the body produces too many tears or tear drainage is affected, the result is excessively watery eyes. While not necessarily harmful, watery eyes can be an irritation. Thankfully, they can be treated quickly and easily.
Watering eye symptoms
Watery eyes are characterised by an excess of tears, which can give the eyes a glassy look and may result in tears running or dripping from the eyes. Some excessive tear production is natural in cold or windy environments or if a foreign body gets into the eye. However, excessive and constant watering is not normal and may occur for a number of reasons.
Causes of watery eyes
There are two main causes of watery eyes: excessive tear production and poor tear drainage.
Excessive tear production
Tear over-secretion is usually caused by irritation or inflammation of the surface of the eye. This can occur for a number of reasons, including eyelash and eyelid problems or allergies. Ironically a dry eye problem can sometimes cause watery eyes because the eye produces excess tears to combat the irritation and dryness.
Poor tear drainage
Watery eyes can also occur when the eye’s tear drainage channels are unable to drain a normal volume of tears. This can be caused by a blocked tear drainage duct, narrow or displaced tear drainage openings (puncta), or lax eyelids causing the normal tear drainage ‘pump’ (usually activated by blinking) to fail.
Treatments for watery eyes
In the case of excessive tear production, watery eyes can often be treated very simply with eye drops, warm compresses or sometimes medication. Treatment for tear drainage problems is usually surgical, with most being quick and highly effective.