Dry Eye

Dry Eye is a common condition that affects men and women of all ages. Although the symptoms are not severe, irritation of the eye will become worse if it is left untreated for an extended period of time, leading to the eyelid becoming inflamed, the eyelashes rubbing against the cornea, and the cornea becoming damaged, which could possibly result in surgery.

Dry Eye

Dry Eye is caused by an abnormality in the body’s natural production of tears, resulting in a reduced level of moisture that is inadequate to properly lubricate the eyes. This causes irritation and soreness, as well as a stinging or burning sensation in the eyes.


Causes of Dry Eye

  • Meibomian gland dysfunction (MGD) is a condition affecting the glands that are arranged vertically within the eyelid and which produce tears to provide lubrication for the eyes
  • Hormonal imbalance, particularly in women, affecting the quality of the tears
  • The use of contact lenses
  • Allergies caused by dust, smoke, or pollution
  • Daily activities, including working at a computer or concentrating on a smart phone for a long period of time
  • Certain medications, including birth control medications, antihistamines, antidepressants, and medications for high blood pressure

Symptoms of Dry Eye

  • A stinging, burning, or scratchy sensation in the eyes
  • A sensation of having something like sand or dust in the eyes.
  • Sensitivity to air and light
  • Eye redness caused by inflammation
  • Occasional blurred vision
  • Eye discomfort after waking up

Prolonged Symptoms of Dry Eye

If left untreated, the prolonged symptoms of Dry Eye include:
  • Inflammation of the eyelid
  • Eyelids turning towards the eyes, resulting in the eyelashes rubbing against the cornea
  • Damage to the cornea

Diagnosis

The diagnostic process involves the following stages:
  • Review of the patient’s health history
  • Measurement of the quality of the tears
  • Measurement of the volume of the tears
  • Observation of the meibomian glands through a technique called meibography

Treatment

  • Using artificial tears to lubricate the eyes
  • Using steroid eye drops to reduce inflammation on the surface of the eyes and relieve eye irritation. However, use of the eye drops should be controlled under prescription and should be limited to a short period of time
  • Cleaning the eyelids with special solutions in order to get rid of various bacteria, dirt, and debris around the eye area
  • Placing a warm washcloth (at 41-43ºC) on the closed eyelids in the morning and evening
  • Massaging and cleaning the eyelids (pressing the meibomian glands that are arranged vertically within the eyelid)
  • Lifestyle changes, such as reducing eye strain at a computer or smartphone, and properly resting the eyes
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