Dry eye is a type of condition wherein tears cannot provide the eyes with sufficient lubrication. There are many reasons for tears to be insufficient. Typically, the glands located above the eyes are responsible for tears that maintain adequate moisture in your eyes. When the tears cannot perform their purpose, you may experience dry eye syndrome. Some causes include tears that quickly dry up or glands that don’t provide ample tears for your eyes to stay wet. When this happens, the surface of your eyes may get damaged or inflamed. Dry eyes are also common among women 50 years or older, those who do not have enough Vitamin A or those who wear contact lenses. It may also occur in individuals with autoimmune conditions such as lupus.
If you are experiencing dry eyes, you know it can be pretty uncomfortable as you may feel a stinging or burning sensation in your eyes. Other symptoms include red eyes, a feeling of scratchiness like there is a foreign object inside your eye or blurry vision. You may also be extra sensitive to light. Dry eye may occur when you are in some situations that exacerbate the condition, from staring at a computer for a long time or staying for hours in a plane or air-conditioned room. Fortunately, specific treatments help the condition and reduce the discomfort you experience from dry eyes. It is also probable that you will take these treatments indefinitely to control the dry eye symptoms.
Dry eye treatments usually depend on the cause of the symptoms. Below are some options that can reduce these symptoms.
A few changes in lifestyle
To address the problem adequately, it is always best to find out what is causing your dry eye condition. Should there be anything in your environment or your current lifestyle that causes your eyes to dry up, your doctor may offer some suggestions about dry eye management to help keep your eyes protected. Lifestyle changes include avoiding smoke or air conditioning. It may also be best to have a humidifier in your home to maintain moisture in the air. It would help if you also kept yourself hydrated by drinking plenty of water, which is good for your physical well-being and helpful in reducing the symptoms of dry eyes. If you lack sleep, it is best to start developing the habit of sleeping for at least seven hours every night. In addition, taking regular breaks from your computer will allow your eyes to rest.
OTC eye drops
OTC eye drops are a popular method of treatment for dry eyes. Artificial tears are eye drops that may be preservative-based, which have a longer shelf life, or non-preservative used once and disposed of. They help keep the eyes moist and are recommended for mild symptoms, where the product is applied several times daily.
For more severe dry eye conditions, your doctor can provide you with prescription medications to address the symptoms.
If you have dry eyes that keep you uncomfortable, making lifestyle changes and consulting your eye doctor for the best remedies can help address the situation and make you feel much better.
Light therapy treatments
The most powerful option to deal with dry, red, itchy eyes is through light therapy treatment. This non-invasive eye treatment is applied on the skin below the eye and is a very gentle, yet highly effective treatment. Better yet, there is virtually no downtime, and patients often report an improvement after the second session. If you find that medications and eye drops are not the roads you want to go down, or they aren’t working, light therapy treatments might be just the treatment you are searching for.