Dry eye is a condition that affects millions of people worldwide.
In fact, it’s one of the most common reasons that patients pay a visit to their eye doctor. We’ve all had those days where our eyes feel dry, tired and irritated. But what does it mean? And what if it persists?
What Is Dry Eye Disease?
Tears are essential for eye health and visual performance. They protect the eye from infections and lubricate the eye’s surface, keeping it moist and washing away dust and debris. When the eye fails to produce enough tears, or the tears are not of the correct consistency, dry eye can occur.
Dry eye is often a chronic problem–particularly in older adults–although it can occur among any age group. Some possible causes of dry eye are:
Aging, especially hormone changes caused by menopause
Certain medications such as antihistamines, birth control pills, antidepressants and some antibiotics
Infrequent blinking during high-focus activities such as working from a computer, reading, watching television or playing video games can lead to dry eye symptoms
Other illnesses are associated with dry eye, such as rheumatoid arthritis and Sjogren’s syndrome
Experiencing dry eye can be uncomfortable and bothersome. Symptoms vary from case to case, however some report blurred vision, light sensitivity, itching and redness and a gritty feeling in the eye. As ironic as it sounds, a common symptom of dry eyes is excessive tearing and watery eyes. This happens because when the eyes are dry, the body may overcompensate and produce too many tears.
Talk To Us About Dry Eye
If you feel that your eyes are dry throughout the day or on a regular basis, or if you experience any of the above symptoms, visit a Vision Source® member near you. Based on the underlying cause of your dry eye symptoms, they will be able to offer information on certain treatment options. If you have any questions, let us know! Your eye health is important to us. (eyegotcha is a Vision Source® member, call 412.331.9696 to discuss your dry eye or any vision care issues.)
Restasis now has competition in the battle with Dry Eye Disease from Eyelove or Xiidra, a new prescription medication (you may have seen the commercials with Jennifer Aniston as the spokesperson)
Top image by Flickr user Sarah Nichols used under Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 4.0 license. Image cropped and modified from original.
The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.
Author Vision Source — Published September 23, 2016