What Are the Most Common Symptoms of Dry Eye?

What Are the Most Common Symptoms of Dry Eye?

What Are the Most Common Symptoms of Dry Eye?

What Are the Most Common Symptoms of Dry Eye?

Dry eyes occur when the eyes cannot produce adequate tears for lubricating their surface. Individuals can get the condition in one or both of their eyes. It can be mild or severe. If left untreated, it can significantly affect your vision. Read on to learn more.


 

How Tears Work

 


Your tear film comprises a watery layer for moisture, an oily layer for lubrication, and a mucus layer for even spreading. It also has antibodies and proteins that protect your eyes from infection. An imbalance in this composition or inadequacy of the tears can keep your eyes from being moist and cause them to become dry.


 

Common Symptoms of Dry Eye

 


People who have dry eye experience the following:

 

  • Burning or stinging in their eyes
     

  • A sensation like they have something foreign in their eyes
     

  • Eye redness
     

  • Eye fatigue
     

  • Occasional blurry vision
     

  • Mucus in and around the eyes


 

Diagnosis



A comprehensive eye exam at Westchester Eyes & Aesthetics can diagnose dry eyes. It focuses on the quality and quantity of the tears your eyes produce. Your eye specialist will need your patient history to note if you have any health conditions, environmental factors, and medications causing your eyes to dry. They will also do so to determine your symptoms. They will examine your eyes externally to look for blink dynamics and eyelid structure.


Your eye doctor will use magnification and a bright light to help them evaluate your cornea and eyelids. They will check for abnormalities in your tears. A special dye your specialist places in your eye will highlight changes to your eye surface as they observe your tear flow. Doing so will help them measure the quality and quantity of tears your eyes produce.


 

Treatment



Dry eye treatments aim at restoring or maintaining an adequate number of tears to minimize dryness. An optometrist can prescribe the appropriate treatment for your dry eye condition, depending on its severity. They will do so to prevent your vision from getting affected due to the discomfort it causes on the eye surface and eye health.


Artificial tears help supplement your natural production of tears. You can use them as often as possible whenever your eyes get dry. They work for mild dry eye cases. You can get them over the counter. Your optometrist can also prescribe eye drops that can increase your tear production.


You can also conserve the tears you produce by blocking your tear ducts. Your specialist can recommend using gel-like or silicone plugs. A surgical procedure can also close your tear ducts permanently. Either way, the main goal is to retain the tears you produce longer to reduce your dry eye symptoms.


Your optometrist can recommend eyelid cleaners, lid massages, ointments, and warm compresses to reduce the inflammation around the surface of your eyes. Treating the inflammation causing your symptoms can relieve your dry eyes.


 

Prevention

 


People who work long hours on their computers should remember to blink regularly. Doing so helps rewet the eyes and spread the tears across the eye surface. You can also use a humidifier to increase the humidity in your home or office to prevent dry air. Avoid staying or visiting dry environments like deserts, high altitudes, or airplanes.


Protect your eyes from the sun and wind by wearing eyeglasses. You can also direct your car heater away from your face to keep from blowing air directly into your eyes. Drink at least eight glasses of water every day to avoid dehydration. You can also take nutritional supplements with essential fatty acids to reduce dry eye symptoms.



For more about dry eye, visit Westchester Eyes & Aesthetics at our office in Yonkers, New York. Call 914-586-EYES (3937) to book an appointment today.

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