your ophthalmologist about whether you could have a condition called dry eye syndrome. If so,
you might experience uncomfortable, irritated eyes that burn or sting
and are sensitive to light. Your ophthalmologist might also diagnose you
with dry eyes if you have trouble wearing contact lenses or suffer from
blurry vision. There are two main causes of dry eyes; keep reading to
Decreased Production of Tears
If you do not produce enough of your own natural tears, you may have dry
eye syndrome. You have a higher risk of this condition if you are older
than 50 or if you are a postmenopausal woman. Tear gland damage and medical
conditions such as Sjogren’s syndrome, diabetes, lupus, arthritis,
and vitamin A deficiency can also put you at risk for decreased tear production.
Disclose your full medical history to your ophthalmologist to determine
your risk factors.
Inadequate Quality of Tears
Tears have three main components: oil, water, and mucus. Each of these
components play an important role in keeping your eyes lubricated. A deficiency
in any of these components can cause dry eye syndrome. Your ophthalmologist
might ask you about your specific symptoms to determine if you are deficient
in any of these components. For example, an inadequate amount of water
can result in a stringy discharge.
Your ophthalmologist will likely prescribe medications to
treat your dry eye syndrome. If your eyelids are inflamed, you could take antibiotics to ease the
swelling. Prescription eye drops can address inflammation of the corneas,
and might contain cyclosporine or corticosteroids. Your ophthalmologist
may also recommend a prescription eye insert, which is a very tiny pellet
placed in the lower eyelid.
Tear Duct Plugs
Your ophthalmologist might recommend tear duct plugs, which partially or
completely close the tear ducts in order to keep the tears on the eye.
This can be accomplished with small silicone plugs, or with a procedure
that uses heat to shrink the tissues.
You don’t need to suffer from dry eye syndrome any longer. See an
ophthalmologist today at the NYC office of
Dr. Mark Hornfeld. Give us a call at (212) 580-8881 or visit our website to learn more about