Dry Eyes Are Manageable
Due to our climate, many Canadians will experience dry eyes at some point in their lives. Seasonal variations can exacerbate this common condition, so it’s pretty hard to avoid!
Here’s the good news: Dry eyes, even chronic ones, can be managed.
Pharmacological treatments and lifestyle modifications can alleviate symptoms of dry eyes, but the first step is determining the underlying cause of your condition.
Your optometrist will conduct a thorough examination of your eyes, and recommend suitable treatment options.
What Are Dry Eyes?
Dry eyes are precisely what the name suggests: An eye condition that causes increased dryness, resulting in various symptoms. Dry eyes cause redness and burning, propelled by a lack of tear production.
The tear film has 3 layers, and each layer has its own function for keeping eyes hydrated and bacteria-free.
- The outer oily lipid layer: This layer slows down evaporation, and keeps the eye’s surface smooth.
- The watery middle aqueous layer: This layer hydrates the eye, channelling nutrients to their correct positions.
- The inner mucous layer: This layer helps tears stick to the eyeball.
When tears are imbalanced and can’t provide enough lubrication to keep eyes comfortable, it can result in dry eyes.
Causes & Symptoms of Dry Eyes
Alberta’s arid climate is the main perpetrator for most dry eye sufferers in the Chestermere area, as dry air can affect moisture levels in the eyes. Other causes of dry eye can include:
- Side effects from medications
- Skin conditions of the eyelids
- Meibomian gland dysfunction
- Prolonged computer use
Symptoms of dry eyes can include:
- Blurred or hazy vision, intermittently
- A stinging or burning sensation in the eyes
- Grittiness in the eyes
- A stringy, sticky discharge from the eyes
- Excessive tearing
- Tired eyes at the computer
Relief For Dry Eyes
The treatment for dry eyes will vary depending on the cause and severity of your symptoms. There are various options available, and your optometrist will work with you to determine the best course of action for your vision.
- Mild dry eyes: Depending on the cause of your condition, your optometrist may recommend various types of artificial tears, omega-3 supplements, warm compresses, or eyelid cleansers.
- Moderate to severe dry eyes: Your optometrist may prescribe eye drops that induce tear production and reduce inflammation to improve lubrication, or recommend punctal plugs to seal off the eyelid’s drainage ducts, which can help retain the tears in your eyes.
You don’t need to suffer through the irritating symptoms of dry eyes!
At Chestermere Optometry, we’ve dedicated ourselves to providing Albertans with relief from dry eyes. We’ll tailor the solution to the cause and severity of your condition, so book a comprehensive eye exam today. Relief is waiting.