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  • Writer's pictureDr. Anna Lunaria, Doctor of Acupuncture & Integrative Medicine

Dry Eyes & Acupuncture

Do you have dry eyes? Currently 5-15% Americans have dry eyes (16-49 million people). Dry eyes can feel sensitive to light, itchy, burning or scratchy; they make you feel uncomfortable. Dry eyes can make it more challenging to drive at night. Dry eyes can cause eye fatigue and blurred vision. Dry eyes may also lead to watery eyes. When we don't make enough tears, eyes become inflamed and damage occurs to the eye. Dry eye cost are estimated to be $55.4 billion annually. The reason why your eyes are dry can range from a clogged tear duct, gland dysfunction, tear film dysfunction, hormonal shifts, allergies, inflamed eyelids, decreased tear production, Vitamin A deficiency, external conditions (wind, smoke, dry air) or autoimmune conditions. Aging also contributes to dry eyes. Certain medications side effects include dry eyes. Dry eyes are more prone to infection and damage to the eye. Dry eyes can decrease quality of life. Using artificial tears is the primary Western medicine treatment strategy for dry eyes.

A systemic review of Acupuncture for dry eyes found good evidence for Acupuncture and dry eyes; it also provided insights for optimizing acupuncture treatment for dry eye syndrome (Kim, 2018). @ Yin Rising Acupuncture and Integrative Medicine we integrate research into your acupuncture treatment. This review made several worthwhile observations for the clinical acupuncture treatment application for dry eyes. Acupuncture was found to be more effective than artificial tears and acupuncture with artificial tears had synergistically better results than both alone. Most of the studies included local acupuncture points around periorbital ridge: YuYao, Tai Yang, St2, SJ23.

Importantly, the authors noted that studies that used UB2 and St1 were less effective. (Kim, 2018). A common indication of the less effective points (UB2, St1 and GB14) is lacrimation (CA, 2010). These points decrease tear production and should be omitted in a dry eye treatment (Kim, 2018). The research confirms traditional point indictions.

The research authors also noted the ideal acupuncture ‘dose’ of treatment was 6 weeks with 2-3 treatments per week. Less than a month and more that 3 treatments per week and less than 2-3 treatments per week were less effective.

At Yin Rising Acupuncture and Integrative Medicine your treatment plan is designed with your health goals, preferences and values: your Acupuncture treatment may include meditation, breathing exercises, manual therapy (bodywork, massage/Cupping/GuaSha), Yoga Therapy, nutrition, supplements and/or herbal medicine to holistically support healing your dry eyes and cultivating overall wellbeing.

Get started on treating your dry eyes naturally with Acupuncture and Integrative Medicine with Dr. Anna Lunaria! Call/Text (480) 206-6199 or book on-line @


Kim, B. H., Kim, M. H., Kang, S. H., & Nam, H. J. (2018). Optimizing acupuncture treatment for dry eye syndrome: a systematic review. BMC complementary and alternative medicine, 18(1), 145.

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