My Daily Routine with Thyroid Eye Disease

At this point in my journey with thyroid eye disease (TED), I've had 4 surgeries to help reverse some of the damage caused by TED. These surgeries certainly helped a great deal and made my life so much better, but my eyes are not the same as they were before TED. I have found that it is still necessary to alter my daily routine to help make managing symptoms a bit easier.

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My new morning routine with TED

In the morning, my eyes are dry and puffy when I wake up. Unfortunately, the dryness has been persistent throughout my experience with TED, and the puffiness is simply due to gravity/lying down for several hours.

Sleep position

I have found that sleeping with my head slightly more elevated can help with this problem, but I'm currently also navigating chronic neck pain, which requires its' own specific pillow setup.

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Soothing dry eyes

But once I wake up, I'll adjust my pillows to elevate my head and add my first eye drops of the day. I also place a warm compress over my eyes if I have time. While there are different methods and products, my favorite is simply a washcloth with warm water. The extra moisture is soothing for my dry eyes, and I can see a difference in the puffiness in just a minute or two.


Then it's time for makeup! While I love wearing makeup, I purposefully avoid doing it first thing in the morning. I want to give my eyes a chance to calm down and have the freedom to use eye drops throughout the morning without fear of messing up my carefully placed mascara and eyeliner.

I usually work from home or in my neighborhood in the mornings, so fortunately, I can be home to do my makeup around lunchtime. I pack my bag for the day and often bring eyeliner, concealer, and a small eye shadow palette to touch up my makeup in case my eyes get irritated.

Tools to support my eyes throughout the day

I also bring sunglasses because sunglasses can be a barrier between the wind and my eyes, even on cloudy days. I do my best to stay hydrated throughout the day, and it may sound silly, but I have to remember to take breaks to blink. I look at screens a lot for work and enjoy seeing theatre in my free time. I've noticed that screens and the bright stage lights irritate my eyes a bit, but I recognize that I also may be very focused and will naturally not blink as often. Taking a moment to intentionally take a break and close my eyes for a few seconds helps.

My evening routine

At the end of the day, I remove my makeup well. Then, it's time for more eye drops. I fill the small humidifier by my bed to help decrease dryness (if I forget to do this, I can certainly tell the difference by the morning), and I use gel eye drops right before falling asleep. These eye drops can make vision a bit blurry for a minute, but these are extra hydrating and soothing.

Do you have any tips that have helped you throughout the day?

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

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