Your tear film is a protective liquid coating that covers the surface of your eyes, keeping them moisturized and healthy. The tear film has three layers: water, mucus and oil. If something disrupts the balance of your tears, it can result in uncomfortable symptoms such as persistent eye redness, itching or burning.
Fixing the Most Common Cause of Dry Eye
Dry eye is a chronic and progressive disease. In fact, a number of environmental or biological factors can cause dry eye, and the Laser Eye Center doctors routinely perform complete dry eye work-ups to find out why our patients suffer from symptoms.
Once we have identified the underlying cause of your dry eyes and uncovered any contributing factors, we can put in place a plan to address your condition.
Eighty-five percent of dry eye cases are attributed to meibomian gland dysfunction, which is a problem with the glands that produce the oily layer of the tear film. When tears lack oil, they evaporate rapidly off the surface of the eyes and dry eye symptoms occur. Excessive screen time can also factor into these cases, as looking at screens causes us to blink less, which limits the natural replenishment of tears and oils over the ocular surface.
As a pioneer in dry eye treatment, Laser Eye Center offers the first true intervention available that is also the safest and most effective therapy: iLux. In the past, using drops that masked the symptoms of dry eye was the only relief available to patients — of course, that relief proved to be temporary. With iLux, a quick and painless treatment, we can provide swift relief from the burning, stinging and redness associated with dry eyes. When routinely performed, iLux can keep symptoms at bay, rejuvenating the health of your eyes and relieving you of painful symptoms.
When You Can’t Pinpoint the Cause of Your Dry Eyes
If you don’t have meibomian gland dysfunction, you are part of the 15 percent of patients whose dry eye problems can be attributed to other causes. You may be engaging in behaviors that actually make your symptoms worse (but not even know it).
Smoking is harmful to nearly every part of your body, including your eyes. Smoking can exacerbate the burning, stinging and scratchiness that is consistent with dry eyes.
Talk to your primary care physician about a smoking cessation plan. Also, avoid exposure to secondhand smoke whenever possible.
Sleeping In Your Contacts
Falling asleep without removing your contacts deprives your corneas of the oxygen and nutrients they need. Unfortunately, this is true even with extended wear contacts.
Always remember to remove your contacts before going to sleep. If you want to get rid of contacts permanently, explore your vision correction options.
A wide range of medications, including antihistamines, decongestants, birth control pills and anxiety medication, can sap moisture from your eyes. Overusing certain over-the-counter eye drops can cause a rebound effect, making dry eye symptoms worse!
Talk to your doctor about adjusting your dosage or switching to an alternative medication that won’t worsen dry eyes. Follow the dosage instructions when using over-the-counter eye drops.
To request a consultation with our team to discuss your dry eyes, or to learn more about iLux treatment, please contact us today.