Your Guide to Dry Eye Syndrome
From time to time, everyone experiences dry eyes. This is often due to changes in the weather or being in a dry or smoky environment. In such cases, dry eyes are a temporary issue. However, for some, it’s a chronic condition that can create a great deal of discomfort and frustration. Dry eye syndrome can lead to more serious issues if it’s not treated. Learn more about this condition and how our optometry team at Eyes Over Copley can help.
What Causes Dry Eye Syndrome?
Dry eye syndrome is an ongoing condition that millions of Americans live with. Your eyes are designed to stay lubricated by the tears you produce, which consist of water, mucus, and oil. When all of these components are present in the right amounts, your eyes can be properly moisturized, and any germs, bacteria, and other dangerous substances can be washed out. Unfortunately, not everyone's tears are capable of performing these functions. Some people simply do not produce enough tears, while others do not produce tears of sufficient quality, meaning that the proper amounts of oil, mucus, and water are not present.
Symptoms of Dry Eye
The most common symptoms typically include:
- Itchy or burning eyes
- Watery eyes
- Eyes feeling heavy
- Sensitivity to light
- Eye fatigue
- Feeling like something is stuck in the eye
- Blurry vision
Unfortunately, if dry eye syndrome goes untreated, it can lead to damage or scarring of the cornea and potentially vision loss. Additionally, if the eyes are unable to wash out germs and bacteria, it could leave you at risk of infection or other undesirable issues.
How an Optometrist Can Treat Dry Eye
It’s essential that an eye doctor begins with a comprehensive eye exam. This confirms that dry eye is the cause of your symptoms and determines what, if any, damage has been done. It’s also important to determine the underlying cause of your condition, as this will determine the most suitable course of treatment. Medicated eye drops can help ensure your eyes stay properly lubricated and may be the only solution needed for some people.
Lifestyle changes can also play a role. For example, those who stare at a computer screen for long periods of time may need to take more frequent breaks. Also, if you wear contact lenses, it might be necessary to switch to eyeglasses, at least temporarily. In some cases, it might be necessary to perform a procedure that unblocks your tear ducts, allowing the eyes to produce tears properly. Our optometry team will discuss all potential options after a thorough eye exam.
Treat Dry Eye Syndrome with Our Eye Doctor in the Greater Boston Area
If you're suffering from dry eye symptoms, let us help. Call Eyes Over Copley at (617) 859-0630 to schedule your appointment today.