What is dry eye?
Dry Eye Syndrome (DES) is a chronic disease that can cause a variety of symptoms including dryness, itching, burning, redness and even excessive tearing. "Dry eyes" is actually a misnomer for a condition in which your eyes are not able to produce an adequate amount of tears to keep them moist, clear and comfortable.
What causes dry eye?
The onset of dry eyes may be a result of bodily changes such as aging, arthritis, contact lens usage, pregnancy or menopause or abnormalities of the eyelids. Certain medications are known to increase susceptibility to the condition including medicines prescribed for acne, allergies and sinus problems. There has also been a correlation between LASIK surgery and a heightened risk of dry eye syndrome. Exposure to sun, wind, smog, air conditioners, ceiling fans, forced heat and hair dryers may also contribute to a dry eye problem. People who wear contact lenses or work frequently with computers are also at a higher risk.
What are the symptoms of dry eye?
Symptoms of dry eyes include:
- Burning, sore and red eyes
- Blurred vision
- Sensitivity to light
- Contact lens discomfort
- Eyelids sticking together
- A gritty, itchy feeling
- Dry eyes or excessive tearing
While symptoms may vary (and often do not include dry eyes at all), this chronic condition is one of the most common eye diseases and can be extremely painful and debilitating if left untreated.
Dr. Dipa Kodukula, the optometrist at the Lakeline Vision Dry Eye Clinic, has years of experience specializing in the diagnosis and treatment of dry eye. With a thorough eye exam, she will be able to determine the cause of your unique case of dry eye and prescribe the best treatment plan for you.