Dry eye syndrome is a common condition that occurs when tears aren’t able to provide adequate moisture. This keeps the exterior of the eye from being adequately lubricated. Effects span from a little aggravation to the prevention of contacts lens wear and an inflated danger of eye infections and inflaming of the cornea.
Indications and Effects of Dry Eye
Dry eye causes a scratchy, uncomfortably hot, or stinging sensation or the feeling that something is in the eye. Excess prolonged dryness is a quite obvious indication as well. If you show any of these signs, then your ophthalmologist will most likely want to calculate your eyes’ quantity of stored water. A Schirmer test is often used where a slim piece of filter paper is position at the eye’s corner.
Oddly enough, dry eye can also lead to watery eyes since the absence of hydration can force your eyes to overproduce the watery part of your tears.
Dry eye can occur when basal tear production decreases, tear evaporation increases, or tear composition is imbalanced.
It can happen as part of aging, even more present in women over forty. It can take place as an unintended effect of medications, pills, or medicines. Or it can caused by a dry environment where you live that has a low amount of water in the air, similar to a desert region.
Interior air or heat systems can also dry out eyes. If you’re not blinking enough, like when you stare at a device all day then this can also lead to dry eye since blinking rehydrates it’s surface.
Dry eye is also affiliated with some specific diseases such as Sjögren’s syndrome, lupus, scleroderma, blepharitis, and rheumatoid arthritis.
Wearing contacts for extended periods of time, not fully closing your eyelids, eyelid sickness or inflammation and a defect in the glands that produce tears serve as other various causes.
Dry eye is proven to be more present in females, potentially as a result of hormonal swings. Studies done recently also offer the suggestion that smoking can inflate your chance. The cosmetic surgery of blepharoplasty used to treat sagging eyelids, also has a correlation with dry eye since there are a lack of full eye closures after the procedure.
While dry eye can sometimes be incurable, it’s symptoms can be controlled. Consult an eye care professional to help determine the cause and then treatment can be decided on.
Some may suggest artificial tears and other over-the-counter (OTC) topical medications for mild dry eye symptoms. The liquid can relieve your eyes of their dry or scratchy feeling, as well as the feeling of something being in your eye. These eye drops can also be formed with a certain power prescribed specifically for you to elevate your tear production. Less frequently, a doctor may also advise a steroid for quicker temporary pain removal.
Other choices for treatment include a miniature insert with lubricating material inside. These are positioned underneath the bottom eyelid, and consistently gives out lubrication during the day.
Most artificial tears can’t be used simultaneously with contact lens wear so you’ll probably need to take them out first. Wait at least a quarter of an hour, or however long the label advises, before putting them back on. For less intense forms of dry eye, rewetting drops for contacts could be enough to soothe your eyes, though this relief only lasts for a little while. Swapping the company who manufactures your lens to another may assist as well.
Always take the precaution of consulting your doctor or at least looking over the label prior to purchasing over-the-counter eye drops. Your ophthalmologist has experience in understanding which substances work and work for a long time, along with which will cooperate with your lens.
Environmental factors, such as sunlight, air currents, and dust can also be controlled by sunglass wear. Designs that wrap around the head are ideal.
If your dry eye is a bit more severe, your ophthalmologist may suggest punctal plugs. These miniature tools are placed into your lids’ ducts to decelerate how fast tears leave your eyes. They effectively keep eyes hydrated and moistened.
Meibomian gland dysfunction causes tears to evaporate too quickly so if your dry eye is caused by this, then your doctor may suggest heated compresses or a procedure be done to prevent the glands’ blockage and mend any abnormalities.
Supplements for nutrition may also be recommended since these have specific fatty acids that lessen symptoms. Consuming water more frequently can also aid any discomfort.
Sometimes, medicines or other pharmaceutical drugs can dry eyes, so stopping use normally amends the issue. Though the advantages and helpful effects of the drug should be considered against dry eyes as a side effect. Swapping the kind of medicine to another one can help symptoms as well as ensuring necessary treatment. Nonetheless, only ever trade or stop using medications after talking to your doctor.
Dealing with any repressed diseases can serve as additional help. This could lead to the use of antibiotics or steroid drops, as well as recurring scrubbing of the eyelids with a shampoo that fights against bacteria.
If you’re thinking about laser eye surgery, keep in mind that your eyes have to qualify for the procedure, and your dry eyes will probably have to be mended first. Your eyes may not recover well post-surgery if you have dry eyes so most professionals will mend the condition prior to treatment for the best results. This will apply to most forms of eyesight repairment surgery.
Dr. Joseph Cohen O.D.
Woodland Hills Optometrist
Receive an Excellent Service and Comprehensive Eye Care
Providing service in English and Farsi
19737 Ventura Blvd., Suite 201, Woodland Hills, CA 91364