Why do my tears burn my face? It is neither a very simple nor a frequently asked question. To know the solution to this problem, we need to dig deeply into the causes of such skin burns.
Researchers have found that crying is beneficial for your physical and mental health. Tears nourish the eyes and help us release stress — as the body releases toxic and stressful chemicals through tears. This is the reason we feel a bit relaxed after crying.
But crying is not always satisfying. Sometimes the person shedding tears experiences even more pain after weeping because the tears leave the sufferer with severe skin burns.
Is it because of the tears, or is there some hidden problem? And how can you get rid of this not-so-common issue?
Continue reading the article if you crave to answer the query, “Why do my tears burn my face? ”Because in this article, we shall hit this topic in detail.
Let’s get started.
Why do my tears burn my face? POSSIBLE REASONS
The answer to “Why do my tears burn my face” is already in the question.
We can broadly classify the possible reasons under two headings. These are:
- Acidic Tears
- Skin Problems
We will discuss each reason in detail one by one.
Why do my tears burn my face? One of the biggest reasons that you have got Acidic Tears.
Have you ever wondered what tears are composed of? Why and how tears become acidic? Is there any change in pH? Here is the answer.
Composition of Tears
Tears are made from the water in the body. They are composed of mucus, fatty oils, hormones(sometimes), and over 1500 different proteins. Moreover, tears contain electrolytes such as sodium, potassium, bicarbonate, chloride, and lower calcium and magnesium levels. Sialic acid is also present in tears.
The normal pH of tears is between 6.5 to 7.6, which means tears are almost neutral. Tears become acidic if the pH drops from 7—these very tears cause skin burns.
Causes of Acidic Tears
Here is a list of factors that boost the production of acidic tears.
- An acidic body
- Unhealthy eating habits
- Several eye diseases
- Stress issues
Each affects the composition of tears in one way or another.
- Acidic body
Acidosis is the condition in which the body fluids become highly acidic. Acidosis can either be respiratory or metabolic.
Naturally, kidneys and lungs regulate the body pH, which is slightly alkaline. But sometimes, kidneys fail to perform this function efficiently. This is where metabolic acidosis begins from.Gradually, the acidic deposition of the body rises. There can be a lot of reasons for acidity ranging from an unhealthy diet to serious diseases like diabetes.
The body gets rid of this excess acid deposition by excreting it through different body fluids such as blood, sweat, urine, and tears. Consequently, the tears produce burning sensations on the skin. And you wonder why do my tears burn my face.
- Unhealthy eating habits
People who consume acidic food ultimately suffer from acidity. Are you one of those people who do not care much about their diet? If you said yes, it might be the best answer to the question that why do my tears burn my face.
There is a difference between acid-containing food and acid-forming food.
Acid forming food includes;
- Soft drinks and alcohol
These are rich in phosphoric acid that adversely affects kidneys and bones.
- Red meat, chicken, and eggs
A high concentration of proteins and phosphorus is found in them.
- Processed food/grains such as fast food, baked items, and white bread.
- Cheese and other dairy products
They contain phosphorus and many other acid-forming substances.
Acidic food includes;
- Citric fruits
One must always avoid acid-forming food more than the actual acidic food asnaturally acidic foodis highly nutritious and it is necessary for a balanced diet as well.
Also add green vegetables, bananas, and yogurt to your diet.
Why do my tears burn my face? Because you are severely dehydrated.
Dehydration is the lack of enough water in the body that is necessary to carry out the life sustaining-functions. When the body is dehydrated, kidneys cannot function properly. Hence, the acidic content of the body increases.
There can be many reasons for dehydration such as diarrhea, vomiting, excessive sweating, or over peeing. Ultimately, it leads to the excretion of acidic tears — another possible cause of your skin burn.
- Several Eye Disease
Certain eye diseases/infections such as conjunctivitis(pink eye), Blepharitis, Dry Eye Syndrome, and Eye Strain produce a sense of itchiness around the eyes. It might be the reason you feel as if your skin is burning.
Eye diseases can be caused by bacteria, viruses, irritants, fungi, or parasites. Their symptoms and treatments vary from person to person and from disease to disease.
These disorders are sometimes contagious, severely damaging, and demand proper medical treatment.
- Stress issues
Why do my tears burn my face? Because too much stress triggers certain brain centers that are responsible to manage pain.
It is said that under stressful conditions, the body’s defensive system operates. In such situations, the body becomes extra sensitive to different stimuli.
The tears now contain chemicals, irritants, and hormones. The skin turns slightly more sensitive. The whole body reacts differently to changes taking place inside and outside of it. This might be the reason for skin aches and rashes while you cry when you are stressed.
- Skin problems
Why do my tears burn my face? So, you haven’t got the answer yet. Well! Thereis always another side of the coin.
If the problem is not associated with your tears, you might have some skin issues that you are not paying attention to.
Read further to see the flip side of the coin.
Several skin issues make the skin allergic. This allergic skin when exposed to irritants(tears in our case) creates hives and rashes.
Causes behind skin issues
Following are some causes of skin discomfort.
- Hypersensitive skin
- Allergic to tears
- Facial (skin) injuries
- Side effects of medication
- Hypersensitive Skin
Hypersensitive skin is actually hyper-reactive skin. In this condition, the skin reacts immediately with the agents that are well-tolerated by the normal skin. The person experiences an unpleasant itchingin consequence.
It is a very common skin problem that affects people all around the world regardless of theirage, sex, and race.
But why do my tears burn my face?Are tears, skin burns, and hypersensitive skin all interlinked? Yes, they are.
We know that tears contain salts and sialic acid. Tears react with the skin when roll down through it. They leave no impression on normal healthy skin but affecthypersensitive skin badly. It becomes stinky and feels like a burn. In some other cases, the skin becomes extremely dry due to this sensitivity.
A few causes of hypersensitive skin are:
Psychological factors Negative emotions like anger, anxiety, stress increase skin sensitivity
- Environmental factors such as extremely hot or cold weather, wind, a high rate of pollutants in the air, too long exposure to the Sun
- Unhealthy diet
Alcohol consumption, eating spicy foods, etc.
- Application of excessive chemicals on the face
- Skin disorders
Skin becomes more sensitive due to various disorders such as eczema, rosacea, acne, and dermatitis.
- Genetic factors
Sometimesgenetic factors also affect skin sensitivity.
- Must have a skincare routine.
- Prefer using the products specifically designed for hypersensitive skin.
- Always keep your skin moisturized so it does not get too dry.
- Use a cleanser to get rid of pollutants absorbed in your skin.
For more guidelines, consult a dermatologist.
- Allergic to Tears
Why do my tears burn my face? The rarest answer to this question is that your face burns because you are suffering from AQUAGENIC URTICARIA.
Aquagenicurticaria is a condition in which the body shows severe allergic reactions when it comes in contact with water. In other words, the person suffering from this disease is allergic to water. This water can be in any form, for instance, sweat/tears/rain/snow/others.
Tears have 3 layers :, aqueous layer, and oily layer, and mucous layer. The thickest among the three is the aqueous layer which means tears are chiefly water.
So the person with aquagenicurticariais allergic to tears also. And whenever he cries, he experiences severe skin burns.
The water triggers certain reactions and immediately, the person develops itchy, burning rashes or urticaria (hives) on the affected area. Althoughhives can appear anywhere from head to toe, these are most common on the neck, arms, chest, and back.
Causes of Aquagenicurticaria
It is such a rare allergy that only one in 230 million people is affected.Less than 100 cases are reported. The researchers are still trying to figure out the actual cause behind this disease.
- Some assume that the chemicals present in the water (like chlorine) trigger an allergic reaction in the skin.
- Still others believe that allergic reactions stimulate the production of HISTAMINE. It is released by the immune system of the body and produces allergic symptoms including rashes, hives, and burns on the skin
The symptoms of Aquagenicurticariaare:
- Erythema; the reddening of the skin due to rashes as it is exposed to water.
- Lesions; the damage of certain tissues as a result of a rash or trauma.
- Urticaria (welts or hives); the itchy red bumps on the skin that sometimes cause pain.
- Inflammationof the affected area
- In severe cases, there occur rashes around the mouth. Swallowing and breathing become difficult. Patient wheezeswhile breathing.
As the disease is quite rare, there is very limited research on it. At present, there is no exclusive treatment for this disease.
- Anti-histamine medicines are used to reduce the severity of the symptoms produced by allergic reactions.
- In severe cases, the person cannot breathe properly. Epipens are used in such cases. These are epinephrine (also called adrenaline). They help the lungs, increase blood pressure and in turn reduce hives.
- Phototherapy; therapy by using specific light (not sunlight)
- Omalizumab, it’s an injectable medication that limits the severe symptoms of allergic asthma and hives.
They say prevention is better than cure. To avoid frequent allergic reactions, it is better to adopt a certain lifestyle that better suits you.
Some preventions are:
- Avoid taking long showers. Take quick and brief showers instead.
- In harsh weather such as extreme hot/cold, take extra care of your skin.
- Apply barrier cream before taking shower. It minimizes the direct exposure of your body to water.
- Avoid foods having a higher proportion of liquids.
- Facial (Skin) injuries
Skin injuries include cuts, open wounds, bruises, stitches, etc. Injuries can occur as a result of the piercing of something sharp in the skin, accidents, or surgeries.
Do you have facial/skin injuries? If yes then the reason of why my tears burn my face should be very clear to you. It is because the salty or acidic tears penetrate deep into the skin. The reaction promotes rashes, itching, and skin burn.
Therefore, to heal the burnt skin, it is very important to treat the open wounds/injuries as soon as possible.
- Apply the antibiotic ointment as prescribed by your dermatologist.
- Use a bandage to cover the wound.
- Take medicine (painkillers) to relieve pain.
- Cold compressors reduce the itching.
- Wash the wound gently to clean it. Don’t leave the wound dirty or it will increase the chance of bacterial attack that may worsen the problem.
- Side effects of medication
Why do my tears burn my face? It can be a side effect of a medicine.
Almost all drugs have side effects on our bodies. Some drugs leave allergic side effects on the skin. If the side effect is in the form of a rash, it is called a drug rash.
Tears when interact with such skin lead to skin burns.
There are a few drugs that cause skin allergies. Some of them are antibiotics, penicillin, sulfa drugs, aspirin, tetracycline, and iodine.
Avoid using such drugs if you notice allergic symptoms.
An Antidote to why do my tears burn my face
We have discussed almost all the possible causes behind why do my tears burn my face? But how will you get rid of this problem? Here’s the solution.
- Replace the acidic food with alkaline food. Avoid alcohol consumption, carbonated beverages, and spicy food and increase the intake of spinach, broccoli, green drinks, cucumber, etc.
- Stay hydrated.
- Use a high quality non-perfumed moisturizer.
- Never use the medicine that you are allergic to.
- Use anti-itching cream to relieve skin discomfort.
- Use cold compressors or ice packs. It is very effective for rashes.
- Limit the use of chemical/makeup products on the skin. Always remove makeup before sleeping.
- Avoid wearing wool and metal jewelry.
- Last but not least, do not ever scratch the wounds. It damages the skin badly.
Tears no doubt relieve pain but not always. There are many reasons behind this discomfort. Either the tears are acidic, or the skin is not healthy. Whatever the case, always seek medical help in case of such issues.
Follow the guidelines we have shared and don’t ignore even minor health issues.
Take conscious care of your health, physical fitness, and mind so that next time you don’t have to ask the question why do my tears burn my face and the questions alike.