Every time you blink, a thin layer of tears spreads across the surface of your eyes, removing tiny dirt and particles. These tears provide nourishment to the eyes preventing them from drying out. If your eyes are not receiving proper lubrication from tears, you will easily feel it. Tears are both necessary and important to the function and health of the eye. Tears are responsible for transporting oxygen and nutrients to the surface of the eye. Without tears, you will likely develop eye infections. Dry eye symptoms signal that there is a lack of tear stability with tear production and drainage. The main causes of dry eye are an inadequate number of tears or poor quality of tears. If the tears evaporate too quickly or do not spread evenly over the cornea due to deficiencies within the three tear layers (oil, water and mucus), dry eye symptoms can develop.
Dry eye symptoms can be uncomfortable and irritating but are usually easy to manage. The most common dry eye symptoms include a sandy or gritty feeling in one or both eyes, the sensation that something is stuck in the eyes, burning or stinging, excessive tears, redness, stringy mucus in or around the eyes, sensitivity to light and/or blurred vision. You may also have trouble reading or driving at night. Dry eye symptoms can be brought on by a variety of causes including age, gender, medications, medical conditions, environmental factors, steady contact lens wearing or previous refractive eye surgery. Medical conditions that lead to dry eye include rheumatoid arthritis, diabetes, thyroid problems and blepharitis. Environmental factors that contribute to dry eye symptoms include wind, smoke and dry climates.
While dry eye is a common condition, if over the counter eye drops do not provide relief, it is vital to contact your eye doctor. Simple tests will be conducted to determine the reasoning behind your dry eye symptoms. Sometimes severe dry eye symptoms require special contact lenses or closing of tear ducts. Although rare, Sjogren’s syndrome is an autoimmune disorder that affects moisture-producing glands. An ophthalmologist can diagnose and offer treatment options. To avoid further discomfort or the potential need for surgical options if left untreated, Eye Institute of South Jersey, P.C. recommends scheduling a comprehensive exam to treat your dry eye symptoms, so they do not worsen.
Providing safe and effective treatment options is a top priority at Eye Institute of South Jersey, P.C.. If you are looking for relief from your dry eye symptoms, contact our office today by calling 856-205-1100 or visiting online at website.