What is Dry Eye?
Dry eye is a condition in which an individual can’t provide enough lubrication and nourish their eyes for manifold reasons. Tears are necessary to maintain the health of the eye’s front surface and vision, and an inadequate amount could lead to inflammation, redness, itchiness, and dry eyes.
An excessive eye watering or poor quality of tears could also cause dry eyes which are of two types—Evaporative Dry Eye and Aqueous Dry Eye. While the former accounts for 86% of all dry eye cases and is caused by blockage to the eyelid glands (meibomian glands), leading to a shortage of oil on the surface of the tears and quicker-than-normal tear evaporation. The latter accounts for 14% of all dry eye cases and occurs when the lacrimal glands do not produce enough tears.
The condition can develop for many reasons, including—age, gender, medical and environmental conditions, and other factors. People above the age of 65 can experience dry eyes. Women are more prone to develop dry eyes due to hormonal changes caused by pregnancy, use of oral contraceptives, and menopause.
People with rheumatoid arthritis, diabetes, and thyroid are more likely to get this condition. Inevitable exposure to smoke, wind, and dry climates can increase the chances of tear evaporation resulting in dry eye. Long-term use of contact lenses could also play a role in developing this condition.
Symptoms of Dry Eye
- Watery eyes or excessive tears (body’s response to the irritation of dry eyes)
- Itchiness or redness
- Stinging, burning, or scratchy sensation
- Light sensitivity
- Eye fatigue
- Blurry vision
- A sense of having something in your eyes
- Difficulty wearing contact lenses and driving during the night
Inadequate tears can make daily activities frustrating, affecting your personal and professional life, affecting—reading, watching TV, driving, or working on the computer.
Over-the-counter or prescription eye drops will relieve Dry Eye symptoms in some patients. However, if those mentioned above are ineffective, you may need to visit a dry eye specialist near you to determine the root cause. Our Arizona eye specialists may recommend:
- Punctal plugs to prevent tear drainage from the eyes.
- RESTASIS® eye drops to increase tear production.
We are now offering LipiFlow treatment for dry eyes. LipiFlow treats the cause, not just the symptoms.
LipiFlow is a treatment performed in a doctor’s office designed to remove blockages from the Meibomian glands, allowing them to properly function and produce the oils that make up the top protective lipid layer of the tear film.
The treatment is supported by more than 30 patients, with studies demonstrating its safe and effective results. It is designed to minimize patient discomfort during a 12-minute treatment that gently massages the eyelids. Once the gland blockages are removed, the glands can resume regular oil or lipid production, which is essential for a healthy tear film, providing stable vision and ocular comfort.
It is the only FDA-approved device for treating meibomian gland dysfunction (MGD), affecting almost 90% of those who suffer from dry eye disease. The treatment is offered in our S. Scottsdale location only.
Book an appointment to see if you are a candidate for LipiFlow.
If you are suffering from dry eye symptoms, contact us today or schedule an eye exam and learn about your options for relief from dry eyes, for only treatment can help you control the condition and symptoms.