What is dry eye?
Dry eye is a condition that can develop if you don’t have enough quality tears to keep your eyes lubricated. We need tears to keep our eyes comfortable and nourished, as well as to help our eyes focus properly.
Do you have dry eye?
An eye exam is needed to diagnose dry eye. See a dry eye doctor if you’re experiencing the following:
- Excess tears followed by extreme dryness
- Blurry vision
To diagnose dry eye, we use a Topcon CA800. This allows us to visualize the tear glands in your eyelids and assess how well they’re functioning. From there, we will measure how quickly tears evaporate off of your eye.
After this, we’ll use the TearLab Osmolarity test to measure the severity of your dry eye disease to determine the best treatment option. We’ll continue to use the TearLab Osmolarity test at each follow-up appointment to measure the effectiveness of your dry eye treatment plan.
What causes dry eye?
Dry eye can be caused by:
- Age (The likelihood of dry eye increases with age.)
- Medications (Some medications reduce tear production.)
- Medical conditions (Rheumatoid arthritis, diabetes, and thyroid issues have been linked to dry eye.)
- Environmental factors (Staring at a computer screen for long periods or being exposed to smoke, for example, can cause dry eye.)
How can dry eye be treated?
Both physiological and environmental factors can cause dry eye. As a result, there are many ways to treat dry eye.
An eye doctor might recommend artificial tears, lid cleansing scrubs, warm compresses, punctal plugs, or prescription eye drops. Every patient is different, so every treatment plan is different.