Using drops on a daily basis is a common practice in the general population. There are a variety of over the counter drops.
1) Redness relieving drops have vasoconstrictive agents. Redness relieving drops, such as Visine or Murine, can be safely used once or twice a day. However, it is best to reserve redness relieving drops for only occasional use - less than once a day. Lumify is a new redness relieving drop by Bausch & Lomb that is effective for up to 8 hours after use.
2) Lubrication drops are for adding moisture to the surface of the eye. There are lubricating drops and lubricating gels. Either drops or gels are good to use during the day to relieve symptoms such as burning, grittiness, redness, blurred vision, and itching. Lubrication drops are safe to use as needed - even multiple times per day. If one is using lubrication drops as much as 4 times per day, a prescription drop for dry eyes might be warranted.
3) Antihistamine drops help relieve itching. Over the counter antihistamine drops are safe to use on a daily basis for extended periods of time to alleviate itching, redness and tearing secondary to allergies.
As you can see, there are different categories of over the counter drops that are safe to use daily.
Dr. A. E. Bishop
Headaches that are frequent, located across the brow and/or around your eyes, that are later in the day can be attributed to eye strain and an eyeglass prescription may alleviate them. The reasons that one can suffer with chronic headaches are vast. Investigative studies and a headache workup with your primary care physician or a neurologist can give you answers, if your glasses are not eliminating your headaches. I always tell my patients to call if the headaches are not better after two weeks of wearing their glasses full time. Prompt referral is in order if chronic headaches persist.
You ask a question that eye doctors hear quite often. I would like to know if you have always been photophobic (sensitive to light) or if it is a new symptom? If you have always been photophobic, that may just be normal for you. Some people are just more sensitive to light than others. That mandates the need for sunglasses outside which protects your eyes from UV damage over time. Wearing sunglasses when outdoors is protective against macular degeneration later in life and pterygiums (growths on the external eye which can extend onto the cornea) just to name a couple of pathologies which can be caused by overexposure to UV light. If this symptom is new, than having a comprehensive eye examination is important to rule out inflammation which might be causing the photophobia. Bottom line, if this is a new symptom - get an eye examination.
depending on the type of refractive error you have and your age. If you
are under the age of 22 years and if you are near sighted (myopic) (blurred
distance vision without glasses), this slight change each year is very
normal. Typically a myopic person's refractive error (glasses prescription)
will be fairly stable throughout your 20s and 30s. After age 40, a person's
eyes will go through changes requiring the need to add a bifocal to your
lenses. Again, this is completely normal. If a person if far sighted
(hyperopic) (blurred near vision without glasses and/or eye strain with
reading), a slight change each year is normal, even throughout your 20s and
30s. After 40, a bifocal will help you see optimally at distance and near.
If you have astigmatism (especially high astigmatism) it is not unusual to
find slight changes each year. An increase in astigmatism every year
throughout your 20s and 30s would trigger an investigation of the health of
your cornea to rule out corneal dystrophies such as keratoconus. No matter
what your age, large, frequent changes or fluctuations in your prescription
could possibly indicate systemic issues such as high blood glucose levels
or can occur with some medications such as oral steroids. Since you mention
slight change yearly, it is unlikely due to systemic issues or to a corneal
dystrophy. As you can see, the answer to your question can vary based on
your age and type of refractive error you have.
Keep getting your eyes checked annually and let me know if you have further