What are dry eyes?The health of your eyes relies on proper lubrication and protection at all times, which comes from your tears. Your tears have three components:
● Water● Oil● MucusIn combination, these three ingredients nourish your eyes, protect them from foreign matter, and help you see more clearly.
With dry eyes, your eyes aren’t getting the lubrication and protection they need because of either a malfunction in your tear production or an environmental factor that’s drying them out.
What causes dry eyes?There are several reasons why you may experience dry eyes, including:
Tear productionGlands in your eyelids produce tears, and tear production naturally declines with age. Also, if you spend a lot of time in an environment that’s windy or arid, your tears may evaporate too quickly.
Tear qualitySince your tears are made up of three components, a deficit in any one area can cause dry eyes. Typically, the deficit is water, but you can also have clogged oil glands.
The most common causes of the two problems above are most often tied back to:● Age, especially over 65● Gender: women are more likely to develop dry eyes because of hormone changes● Medications● Pre-existing medical conditions, such as diabetes or rheumatoid arthritis, or ● Any inflammatory health conditions● LASIK surgery● Environment
How can dry eyes be treated?It’s vital that you get help from Dr. Ngo for your dry eyes because the condition can cause irreparable damage to your eyes without treatment. It can also make using contact lenses and glasses very uncomfortable.
After a thorough examination and review of your symptoms, Dr. Ngo may:● Prescribe eye drops that add tears● Block the drainage ducts to keep the tears in your eyes longer● Open up your oil glands● Suggest a few lifestyle changes and supplementsIn fact, to successfully combat dry eyes, Dr. Ngo may suggest a combination of the treatments listed above to help your eyes remain nourished and protected.
Is it possible to cure my dry eyes?
The answer is no, no it is not possible to Cure dry eyes. It is a chronic condition, because it is very persistent. Dry Eye is influenced by your lifestyle and overall health.
However, you can MANAGE it with various treatments, depending on the severity of your condition. It is extremely important to visit your eyecare providers to get an in depth exam to diagnose and treat the condition properly.
Can I treat my dry eyes with lipiflow therapy? The answer is yes, yes you can treat dry eyes with LipiFlow Therapy. It is one of the most effective thermal procedures to treat dry eyes today. It is used to treat Meibomian glands disease.
What are Meibomian glands? They are your tear glands. Tear glands disease is one of the major causes of dry eyes. Lipiflow therapy only takes 12 minutes. Special heat pads are applied to your eyelids. This will help restore the working conditions of your damaged tear glands.
The procedure is designed to restore your tear film production and hopefully, you will become less dependent on eye drops for relief.
Can I manage my dry eyes with scleral lenses? Yes, you can manage dry eyes with scleral lenses. They are a type of specialty contact lense that essentially acts as a SHIELD to protect your cornea, while providing you with clear vision. They create a chamber between the lenses and the eye.
This holds a pool of tears sitting in front of your eyes, which prevents the eyes from drying out. This makes scleral lenses an effective solution for people suffering from dry eyes while wearing contact lenses. It is also a great alternative to soft contact lenses and even glasses.
Can I treat my dry eyes by way of telemedicine? The answer is no, you cannot treat your dry eyes by way of telemedicine. In order to provide a tailored dry eye treatment, patients will have to visit their eye care providers. We collect precise measurements with our cutting edge technology that will help us diagnose the severity of your dry eyes. This will provide you with a better understanding of your conditions and the treatments designed specifically for you.
What is the least expensive way to treat dry eyes?
The least expensive way to treat dry eyes is to NOT develop dry eyes at all. However, that is not possible. Dry eyes are becoming the leading cause of visual discomfort as well as the most common ocular health problem. You can start treating dry eyes with over the counter eye drops.
I recommend preservative-free drops. Preservatives are known to cause and exacerbate dry eyes. However, artificial tears may not be enough. This is one of the reasons why it is essential for you to visit your eye doctor. Your eye doctor can diagnose and offer clinical advice on your treatment. Ask your eye doctor for their recommendations.
Can makeup cause dry eyes? The answer is yes, makeup can cause you to have dry eyes. The foundation of makeup is coverage. Many types of makeup are designed to cover blemishes and are hard to remove. Also the ingredients on some of the makeups are not healthy for the skin, especially the area around the eyes. Prolonged use of makeup can have detrimental consequences to the tear glands that are embedded within our eyelids.
Once these tear glands are clogged, they will start to atrophy and shrink then die off. Your tear production will then become compromised and soon nonexistent. Visit your eye doctor for a complete evaluation to see if your tear glands are functioning; to what extent are they functioning, and if not, do you need to start treatment to repair your tear glands.
Can my systemic medication cause me to have dry eyes? Yes, your systemic medication can cause you to have dry eyes. Many types of systemic medication have a direct effect on your tear production and or to the health of your tear glands.
This is due to the systemic and chronic nature of these conditions and the need to be medicated for life. Some of the common systemic medications that can cause dry eyes are used to treat diabetes, high blood pressure and thyroid conditions. Please inform your eye doctor if you are taking any of these medications.
Can my acne medication cause me to have dry eyes? Yes, acne medication can cause you to have dry eyes. Systemic acne medication such as Accutane is an example. The purpose of acne medication is to dry out the oil and sebum that are collected at the oil glands on your face. However, the treatment is not isolated to only glands under the surface of our skin.
They actually also dry out the tear glands that are within our eyelids, making these tear glands shrink and atrophy over time. If we have no tear glands in our lids, then our eyes cannot make tears, which can lead to uncomfortable dry eyes.
Can skin conditions, such as Rosacea, psoriasis, or Eczema lead to dry eyes?Yes, skin conditions such as rosacea, psoriasis, or eczema can lead to dry eyes. All of these conditions are derived from inflammation of the skin which can cause skin “rash”. Some people have it so severe that it borders on being painful. People who are affected with these inflammatory conditions can have dry eyes because it also affects the areas around the eyelids.
If not treated, their eyes can become very red, irritated, and uncomfortable. Therefore treating the inflammatory nature of these conditions will not only help to alleviate the underlying conditions and symptoms, but will also help make dry eyes more manageable.
Do most labor workers suffer from dry eyes? The answer is yes, most labor workers suffer from dry eyes, and it’s because of the environment in which they work. From construction workers to the cleaning crew, constant exposure to harsh conditions such as construction sites or various cleaning chemicals, can lead to chronic dry eyes and progressing discomfort.