Dry eye is a common condition that occurs when your eyes don't produce enough tears to keep your eyes moisturized. It also happens if the tears that you create evaporate before they have a chance to lubricate your eyes. Fortunately, our optometry professionals at Vision Quest Eye Care Center in Dover and Milford can treat this condition.
Who Is At Risk For Dry Eye?
Anyone can develop dry eye, but certain factors can increase your chances of getting it. As you get older, your eyes produce fewer tears. Medical conditions such as diabetes, lupus, thyroid disorders, rheumatoid arthritis, and vitamin A deficiency all increase your risk. Certain medications list dry eye as a side effect. These include antihistamines, decongestants, birth control, acne medication, antidepressants, high blood pressure medication, and medicine for Parkinson's disease. Laser eye surgery can cause dry eye, but only temporary. Dry eye is common in people who have suffered tear gland damage due to radiation or inflammation.
What Are the Symptoms?
The symptoms of dry eye can affect your vision. They can also trigger the following symptoms:
- Feeling as if you have something in your eye
- Stinging, burning, or scratching sensation in the eyes
- Stringy mucus coming from the eyes
- Watery eyes
- Blurry vision
- Sensitivity to light
How Is Dry Eye Diagnosed?
Dry eye can be diagnosed during your annual eye exam. If you are experiencing the symptoms of dry eye, your optometrist may perform a Schirmer’s test. This test has your eye doctor place blotting strips under your lower lids. After a few minutes, your optometrist will check the quality of tears that were soaked up by the strip.
How Is it Treated?
The treatment that your optometry professional will choose for dry eye would depend on the severity of your condition.
- Artificial tears: In mild cases, your eye doctor will give you artificial tears to help lubricate your eyes when they start feeling dry.
- Eye inserts: Eye inserts work the same way as artificial tears. They are the size of a grain of rice, and it is placed under your lower lid. During the day, the insert will dissolve slowly, releasing artificial tears.
- Punctal plugs: Punctal plugs help close off tear ducts so that the tears that you do produce won't be wasted.
Stop Dry Eye At Its Tracks. Call Our Optometry Centers Today for Dry Eye Treatment.
If you are experiencing any of the dry eye symptoms listed above, schedule an appointment with Vision Quest Eye Care Center. Our doctors of optometry can diagnose your condition and create a treatment plan to relieve your symptoms. To schedule an appointment, call our Dover center at 302-678-3545 or our Milford center at 302-424-9424.