The treatment of dry eye has come a long way over the years. The condition has several variables and management options that sometimes make it overwhelming to treat. The first step in treating dry eye involves identifying the root cause.
Prescription medication can be ideal in treating moderate or severe symptoms of dry eye. Depending on the cause, your doctor may prescribe eye drops. These can either decrease the inflammation around the eyes or increase the production of tears. Some drops escalate tear creation by reducing the damage to your cornea, fighting dry eye symptoms. To get positive results, you may need to put the medicine at least twice a day for around 3 to 6 months.
These forms of medication are ideal when eye drops do not work. They are clear and small rice-like grains of medicine that you place inside your eyes like contacts. The pellets need to fit between the lower eyelid and your eyeball. Doing this ensures the release of medicine in small doses throughout the day, moistening your eyes.
OTC medication is the most common and often the first option when treating dry eye. There are several forms of the treatment, including gel inserts, ointments, gels, and artificial tears. Over-the-counter means medication that you can purchase without a doctor’s prescription. They offer temporary relief and replace natural tears for aqueous tear-deficient dry eyes.
When using OTC artificial tears, it is advisable to opt for preservative-free solutions. They have lesser additives that irritate your eyes, unlike solutions with preservatives. Over-the-counter eye medications are ideal for mild dry eye cases. Ensure you follow the usage safety guidelines on the packaging material. Improper use or overuse of these eye drops can exacerbate your current predicament.
While selecting OTC eye medications, avoid products that purport to clear red eyes. They may whiten your eyes by constricting blood vessels, which is a risky solution.
If you suffer from dry eye syndrome, wearing scleral or bandage contact lenses may be helpful. These devices help conserve moisture while also protecting the surface of your eyes. They are particularly beneficial to people suffering from dry eyes stemming from tears evaporating too quickly.
Scleral lenses cover the corneal surface entirely, protecting it from debris like dust, smoke, and wind. The design makes it comfortable to wear throughout the day, negating the need for eye drops. Studies show that these lenses help relieve the symptoms of chronic dry eye syndrome when other avenues fail. In addition to this, they help your eyes regain their healthier outlook.
As you can see, there are many options for how to relieve the symptoms of dry eye temporarily or permanently. To find out which is best for you, speak with our doctors at Westchester Eyes.
For more about which dry eye treatment methods are most effective or to schedule an appointment, contact Westchester Eyes & Aesthetics at our Yonkers, New York office. Call 914-586-EYES (3937) today.