What is Dry Eye Disease?
Dry Eye is a common disease in which the eye doesn’t produce enough tears, or the oil quality of the tears are poor. As a result, the water layer of the tear film evaporates. Since the tear film is exposed directly to the air, the protective lipid layer is essential for maintaining a healthy film on they eye. When the protective lipid layer of the tear film is lacking, the result can cause a variety of problems including fluctuating vision, burning, grittiness, and even excessive tearing. This is often caused by a blockage or obstruction of the eyelids meibomian glands.
Do I have Dry Eyes Disease?
Dry eye was more common in older people and women; however, as our world becomes more technologically driven, dry eye can affect anyone. The symptoms of dry eye disease will vary by person. Some people experience milder symptoms, such as vision that fluctuates and improves briefly with blinking. Others might experience more painful symptoms like pain behind the eye which can cause a headache behind the eyes or a feeling of “pins and needles” in the eyes.
“‘I know I don’t have dry eyes, they water all of the time.”
This paradox occurs because keeping our eye moist is a big part of our vision, if the eye starts to become dry, our body’s reflex mechanism is to ramp up the production of tears – this results in watering, sometimes the watering is so extreme that it runs out of the eye and down the cheeks like you are crying.
Our team of doctors can suggest a variety of treatments for dry eye, including artificial tears, medication, and lifestyle modifications.
Click here to take our dry eye self evaluation to determine if you are affected by dry eye.
What are the causes for Dry Eye?
Meibomian Gland Dysfunction, or MGD, occurs when there is a compromise to the function and/or structure of the meibomian glands in the eyelids that produce the protective oily layer of the tear film. MGD affects 86% of those with Dry Eye Syndrome, and it’s often treatable.
How is Dry Eye treated?
Possible treatment for Evaporative Dry Eyes and MGD include:
- Manual expression of your eyelid glands by your doctor
- Warm compress therapy and eyelid hygiene using scrubs and manual massage
- Topical prescription medications
- Over-the-counter tear replacements and lubricants
- Punctual plugs made of silicone or collagen inserted in the tear ducts
- or LipiFlow® Treatment
Your doctor will determine the best treatment option for you based on several factors that are obtained during your Dry Eyes Evaluation.