The tears your eyes normally produce are necessary for overall eye health and clear vision. Dry eye occurs when your eyes do not produce enough tears or produce tears that do not have the proper chemical composition. Dry eye symptoms can result from the normal ageing process, hormonal changes, environmental conditions, excessive computer work, medications, and other health conditions such as diabetes.

 

Symptoms:

• Your eyes may sting, burn or scratch
• Your eyes may secrete sticky mucus in and around them
• Eyestrain
• Sensitivity to light
• Redness of the eyes
• Watery eyes
• The feeling that there is something in your eye or a gritty feeling
• Headache
• Fluctuating vision

 

Treatment:

• Think about blinking more often more specifically when reading or looking at your computer screen for a long period of time.
• Drink a lot of water
• Wear sunglasses outdoors to reduce exposing your eyes to the wind and sun
• Add omega 3 fatty acids to your diet
• Try lubricant drops or ointments found at your local pharmacy
• Avoid smoking
• Try to limit your exposure to air conditioning or increase ambient humidity at work or at home
• If these treatments do not relieve you, consult your optometrist, as there are in-office treatments as well as medications that can be prescribed.

Through additional testing, your optometrist can diagnose your dry eye condition and provide treatment options.  While this is usually a chronic condition, your comfort can be improved and eye health maintained; if left untreated, excessive dry eye can damage tissue and impair vision. Book an appointment with an LMC optometrist for any eye-related issues!

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