What Is Dry Eye Syndrome?
A person's inability to produce a sufficient amount of tears to properly lubricate the eye is a condition known as dry eye syndrome. This common, and often chronic, condition affects older adults and heavy computer users. When a person blinks, tears are spread across the cornea which helps to lubricate and help protect the eyes from dust, debris, and possible infection by washing over the surface of the eye and keeping it clear. When normal tear drainage and production fall out of balance, dry eye syndrome occurs. As a result, the following symptoms may occur:
- Inability to wear contact lenses due to irritation
- The overproduction of tears
- Red or irritated eyes
- The feeling of grittiness or scratchiness in/around the eye
- Blurry vision
- A burning or stinging sensation
Experiencing chronic dry eyes can not only be a burden, but can negatively affect your vision. Seeking dry eye syndrome treatment at a facility like Naples Eye Physicians in Naples, FL, is imperative. Our board certified Ophthalmologist is highly educated and trained and will discuss your symptoms and create a treatment plan that will address your dry eye symptoms.
What Causes Dry Eye?
There are a number of factors that can cause an increase in eye dryness such as:
- Wearing contact lenses — experiencing dry eyes during contact wear is a popular reason why many individuals cease wearing their prescription contact lenses.
- Heavy computer use — the daily use of electronic and digital devices like smartphones or computers can often result in infrequent blinking which often results in the increased evaporation of tears and can lead to dry eyes.
- Outdoor irritants — outdoor conditions such as low humidity, dustiness, or smoke can increase the risk of dry eyes.
- Hormones and menopause — women in their post-menopausal years experience a reduction in the production of progesterone and estrogen which can also result in dry eyes.
- Over-the-counter and prescription medications — Dry eyes are often a symptom experienced when taking certain over-the-counter or prescription medications such as birth control pills, antidepressants, or antihistamines.
How Is Dry Eye Syndrome Treated?
The goal of an Ophthalmologist is to reduce the symptoms of dry eye, prevent damage to the cornea, and improve the overall function of the eyes. One of the most common treatments is the use of artificial tears. Another recommendation may be to block the tear ducts with punctal plugs which are inserted into the tear ducts. As a last resort, a prescription eye drop medication may be recommended.
If you are experiencing dry eye symptoms, visit the Naples Eye Physicians in Naples where our Ophthalmologist can create a dry eye treatment plan today.