What You Should Know about Dry Eyes
Although anyone can suffer from dry eyes, this condition is most common among seniors. If you suffer from this condition, your eyes aren’t producing enough tears (or quality tears) to keep them lubricated. Tears provide your eyes with moisture and nutrients that promote healthy vision. They also wash away dust and debris to protect your eyes from infection. Chronic dry eyes can cause irritating symptoms ranging from itching and burning to pain, sensitivity to light, blurry vision and more. An eye exam from an optometrist at Oxford Optometry in Woodstock will reveal whether you have chronic dry eyes and if so, what you can do to find relief.
Dry Eye Symptoms
As the name implies, dry eyes are distinguished by a lack of tears. Lack of tears can make your eyes feel dry and gritty. If you have dry eyes, you may experience some or all of these symptoms: itching, burning, pain, redness, blurred vision, irritation, eye discharge, and light sensitivity.
In severe cases, dry eyes can cause eye inflammation, infection of the cornea and scarring which will seriously impair your vision. The discomfort of dry eyes can keep you from performing daily tasks or participating in activities you enjoy such as reading, watching movies, etc. Dry eyes can affect your driving, work performance and make it difficult to fulfill family obligations. Working with a Woodstock eye doctor can help you find relief before this condition becomes serious.
Common Causes of Dry Eyes
There are numerous causes of dry eye but here are some of the most common:
- Aging – As you age, your eyes start producing fewer tears, which can lead to this condition.
- Environmental irritants (wind, sun, heat, chemical fumes, smoke, etc.) can affect tear production or quality of tears
- Hormonal changes in women during pregnancy and menopause along with hormone therapies and birth control pills
- Cataract or LASIK surgeries
- Autoimmune disorders
- A low rate of blinking
- Medications like antihistamines, decongestants, blood pressure meds and antidepressants
- Long term wear of contact lenses
Dry eye is more common than people think, particularly among the elderly. Fortunately, most cases can be easily treated.
Dry Eye Treatment
An eye exam from an optometrist at Oxford Optometry will reveal whether you have dry eyes and the severity of your condition. Minor cases of dry eyes can often be successfully treated with artificial tears. These OTC eye drops help lubricate your eyes to alleviate irritating symptoms. Once symptoms are under control, you can continue living the lifestyle you enjoy.
If your condition is severe, your eye doctor may recommend that you use a prescription medication such as Restasis to get the relief you need.
Schedule a Consultation
To schedule an eye exam and consultation for dry eyes, call Oxford Optometry at (519) 421-3303 today.