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How do tears drain from the eye?

Tears are produced to keep your eyes moist. As new tears are produced, old tears drain from the eye through two small holes called the upper and lower puncta, located at the corner of your upper and lower eyelids near the nose. The tears then move through a passage called the canaliculus and into the lacrimal sac. From the sac, the tears drop down the tear duct (called nasolacrimal duct), which drains into the back of your nose and throat. That is why your nose runs when you cry.

In infants with tear duct obstruction, there is a membrane at the end (bottom) of the tear duct preventing tears from draining into the back of the nose and throat.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.