I've had eye irritation for 14 years, which I've posted about in detail in previous posts. When I was younger I took antibiotics probably every time I got a cold, and took Accutane in 1996. I've learned in recent years that antibiotics kill off not just bad bacteria, but also good bacteria that the gut needs to function properly.
At exactly the same time my eyes became chronically irritated, I developed digestive problems, became lactose intolerant, developed joint pain, dry skin and a white coating on my tongue. Doctors say this is coincidental but I have become very self aware of how my entire body feels and their opinion is wrong.
I've come to believe that my eye irritation is the derivative problem of my gut not functioning properly, probably the result of taking so many antibiotics over a span of multiple years, and killing off the positive bacteria needed to create proper equilibrium.
Twice over the past five years, I've had strep throat. Both times, my throat was so sore that I could not eat. However, both times this happened, in the few days that I was waiting for the penicillin to kick in, I could not eat, and during this time, my eye pain completely disappeared. Once the medication kicked in and I could eat again, my eye pain returned with a vengeance.
There are a number of foods that I became sensitive to at the same point in time my eye pain started in 1997. If I eat one of these food items, such as raisins, my eyes become increasingly irritated within a few minutes.
I have seen eye specialists from Los Angeles to New York, Vancouver to Miami, and none can help me. I spent two weeks at the Mayo Clinic which put me through extensive tests, all of which show I am in great health (I eat well, exercise and do not smoke) even though I always feel awful. I have seen numerous natural health practitioners over the years (naturopaths, acupuncturists, Chinese medicine doctors) and all have promised me great results yet none have occurred after I try crazy programs, including a 100 day stint of consuming no sugar, gluten, caffeine or alcohol while eating all organic and cooking with coconut oil!
However, recently I found an old article on CNN's website that led me in a new direction. The article talks about antibiotic induced health problems and how one person experienced relief from a probiotic called Florastor. I was already taking a half packet in the morning of the probiotic HMF Replete and I bought the Florastor and started taking the package's recommended daily maximum of 6 pills (2 pills, 3x daily) in addition to the HMF Replete. Within a day of starting the Florastor, my eye pain had reduced about 50%, my joint pain disappeared, my skin was not as dry, my tongue was not nearly as coated and I no longer felt bloated.
I was feeling much better for 2.5 weeks but there was a problem: on day 2 and on day 16, I developed vertigo for the first time and became nauseous. I called the manufacturer of Florastor and was told that nausea is not a side effect but the daily maximum dose is 4 pills instead of the 6 stated on the packaging. I went to the internet and found third party sites that state 'severe dizziness' is a potential side effect. I have scaled the consumption back to 4 pills daily but I am not experiencing the same level of relief that I realized when taking 6 pills daily.
This past week I found an online article at Eyeworld that discusses how probiotics may benefit eye health; Dr. Latkany is even quoted in the article. That article is called Perspective on Probiotics and can be found at: http://www.eyeworld.org/article.php?sid=4964 .
Something else I find interesting is that last week a researcher at the University of Calgary announced that while working on a lubricant for joint pain, he discovered the remedy can also provide relief for dry eyes. That article is: http://www.calgaryherald.com/health/...841/story.html . I find this really interesting because when the 6 daily Florastor probiotic pills were providing relief for my eyes, my chronic joint pain disappeared. When I scaled back the number of Florastor pills I was consuming, my eye pain increased as did the joint pain; there is a strong positive correlation between the two.
It appears as though researchers are beginning to move in the proper direction to find a solution for all of us who have brutal, chronic eye pain. I am convinced that the solution for fixing the eyes lies in fixing the gut. I intend to take probiotics for an extended period to see what benefits may be achieved and I will post back if sustainable improvement is experienced.