Dry Eye Syndrome and You
Everyone has experienced dry, uncomfortable eyes at some point in their lives. For some, this is more than a rare inconvenience. Certain people experience a chronic, uncomfortable condition known as dry eye syndrome. Sometimes, a few easy lifestyle fixes can greatly improve the symptoms of dry eye syndrome. Other times, you may need to come by Naples Eye Physicians in Naples, FL, for ophthalmology treatments.
What Is Dry Eye Syndrome?
Your eyes naturally have a fine film of tears over them. When you blink, these tears lubricate the eye and wash its surface. This keeps debris, dust, and potentially dangerous bacteria away from your eyes’ delicate tissues.
People with this syndrome don’t produce enough tears. This leads to a number of uncomfortable symptoms including:
- chronic irritation.
- reddened eyes.
- a gritty, scratchy, or sticky feeling in the eye.
- blurry vision.
- burning or stinging, especially when you blink.
- watery eyes.
- difficulty wearing contact lenses.
What Causes Dry Eye Syndrome?
There are quite a few potential causes of this syndrome. One of our Ophthalmologists will probably ask you for your detailed medical history to narrow down what’s triggering your dry eyes. Some common causes include:
- heavy use of electronic devices including computers, smartphones, and tablets.
- wearing contact lenses, particularly if you wear them daily.
- use of certain over the counter or prescription medications such as antidepressants, antihistamines, and birth control pills.
- changes in your hormonal levels after surgery or after menopause.
- exposure to outdoor irritants including dust, smoke, or low humidity air.
What Can Be Done about Dry Eye Syndrome?
Your ophthalmologist's goal is to reduce your symptoms, prevent damage to the eye, and improve your overall visual health. How this is accomplished depends on what’s causing your dry eyes.
If screen time is the reason behind your dry eye, try looking away from the screen at regular intervals for at least 20 seconds at a time. This reduces eyestrain and encourages more frequent blinking.
Switching to glasses every few days can help dry eye symptoms caused by contact lens use.
If medications or hormone changes are the cause of your dry eye, certain medications or the adjustment of the medication you're currently taking can help abate your symptoms.
Other common interventions include:
- using artificial tear drops.
- blocking the tear ducts with punctal plugs so your tears stay in your eyes longer.
- using prescription eye drop medications as needed.
The Best Care for Your Dry Eyes
Are you suffering from the symptoms of dry eyes? At Naples Eye Physicians, we can connect you to the latest treatments for this condition. If you’d like to learn more about our comprehensive ophthalmology services, contact us through our online form. You can also give us a call at (239) 262-6288.