What is Dry Eye?
Do your eyes ever feel scratchy? Like there is something in there? Do you find yourself blinking to try and clear up your vision? These could all be symptoms of dry eye. Dry eye is not only uncomfortable, it can damage your eyes.
Dry eye is a condition when your eyes don’t have enough of the moisture they need. receive the moisture they need. It could mean that you don’t produce enough tears or that they evaporate too quickly
Tears contain a complex mixture of water, oil, and mucus that nourish your eyes and protect them from infection. Inadequate tear production can lead to both short-term discomfort and long-term eye problems.
Signs and Symptoms of Dry Eye include:
What causes Dry Eye?
Stinging and burning
Redness and Irritation
Scratchiness and Grittiness
Blurred Vision Sensitivity to Light
There are conditions such as diabetes, contact lens use, and rheumatoid arthritis that may cause dry eye. Additionally, the increasing use of digital devices and screens can also contribute to these symptoms. Environmental factors and age can also play a role. Through a comprehensive evaluation we will make sure to address your symptoms and concerns and ensure that your eyes feel as comfortable as they can be.
What are the best eye drops to use?
Typically any over the counter artificial tear drop or rewetting drop will work. If you find yourself using tears more than 2-3x/day, it is a good idea to consider using preservative free tear drops. Try to avoid using drops that say "gets the red out".
Reliable brands include Refresh, Systane, Blink tears, Genteal, TheraTears.
What about prescription eye drops?
Do I have to use eye drops?
If you find it difficult to use eye drops, cannot remember to use eye drops, or only get temporary relief from eye drops, we can consider punctual plugs. Punctal plugs are placed in the tear duct in the eyelid. They allow your natural tears to stay on the surface of your eyes longer thus treating the dryness around the clock. You will not feel them. They are placed in the office pain-free.
Prescription eye drops like Restasis, Xiidra, and Cequa definitely have a role in the treatment of dry eye especially if you have an underlying cause for your dry eye such as an inflammatory condition like rheumatoid arthritis.
Call now to learn more about dry eye treatments!