Having dry eyes can be uncomfortable and painful, and it can affect people of all ages. Dry eyes can impact a person’s ability to see clearly, influencing their quality of life. Fortunately, our optometrist Andrew Bowden of Envision Optical, can provide you with the treatment you need to enjoy clearer, more comfortable vision.
What Is Dry Eye Syndrome?
Dry eye syndrome (DES) is a chronic lack of moisture and lubrication in the eyes. Untreated DES can cause persistent irritation, inflammation, and other uncomfortable conditions. It can even lead to corneal scarring and impaired vision.
Having a consistent layer of tears keeps the eyes healthy, functional, and clean. Tears and the lipid layer moisturize the eye and wash away dust and debris that could damage the cornea or lead to an eye infection.
What Causes Dry Eye Syndrome?
Many factors can cause DES:
- Computer use
- Contact lenses
- Dry climates, high altitudes, dry, sunny or windy weather
- Air conditioning or forced heating systems that reduce humidity
- Certain medications, like antihistamines and antidepressants)
- Health conditions like lupus and Sjogren's syndrome
Common Symptoms of Dry Eye Syndrome
Dry eyes can become irritated and inflamed, causing tremendous discomfort. Some common dry eye symptoms include:
- Burning or itching eyes
- Aching or sore eyes
- Heavy or tired eyes
- Red eyes
- Blurred vision
- Sensitivity to light (photophobia)
- Mucus in or around the eyes
As strange as it may sound, another symptom of DES is watery eyes.
How to Treat and Prevent Dry Eyes
There are many ways to treat and prevent dry eyes, some of which include:
1. Artificial Tears
One of the main treatments for dry eyes is artificial tears or eye drops. Eye drops moisten the eye and are available over-the-counter.
Humidifiers put moisture in the air, and tears evaporate more slowly. Placing humidifiers throughout your home or in your workspace can help alleviate DES symptoms.
3. Outdoor Eye Protection
Wearing glasses or goggles that wrap around the eyes can help reduce the effects of dry weather or environmental allergies.
4. Punctal Plugs
For those with more severe cases of DES, punctal plugs can permanently or temporarily block the openings where tears drain from the eye (eyelid puncta).
5. Topical Cyclosporine Therapy
Topical cyclosporine therapy can increase tear production and relieve discomfort from DES.
6. IPL Therapy for Dry Eyes
Intense pulsed light rids the eye of demodex mites and can relieve clogged tear ducts.
We Welcome Your Call to our Gold Coast clinics!
Envision Optical provides comprehensive eye care to Gold Coast patients and their families. We offer various personalized treatment options to help patients with their dry eyes so you can see with more comfort and ease.
Trusted family optometrist Andrew Bowden and our friendly team serve patients at our Burleigh Waters and Tweed Heads eye clinics for your convenience.
We invite you to contact us today to arrange an eye exam.