Tear production is essential to the health and function of your eyes. If your eyes start to produce fewer tears or your tears aren’t the right composition, it could result in dry, red, irritated eyes. These are symptoms of dry eye syndrome. Our team at Eye Care Center-Ballantyne in Charlotte has gathered some frequently asked questions that we run into to explain the causes, symptoms, and treatment of this condition.
Why have my eyes stopped producing tears?
Age is a common cause of dry eye since tear production generally reduces as you grow older. Tear production can be affected by medications you take or health issues. Environmental elements like wind, sun, smoke and air pollution can cause a reduction in tear production, prompting dry eye symptoms.
If you are pregnant or nursing, your eyes may produce fewer tears due to hormonal changes. Your use of digital devices can also cause dry eye since you blink less when viewing a digital screen and blinking helps keep your eyes moist by producing tears. Some people experience temporary dry eye symptoms after LASIK surgery. If you suspect you have dry eye, contact our optometrists.
My eyes are watery all the time. How is this still dry eye?
Sometimes your eyes produce an abundance of tears to compensate for the dryness. These tears aren’t of quality composition (not the right mixture of mucous, oil, and water) to keep your eyes lubricated and moist. Because these tears are mostly water, they evaporate quickly. As a result, you will still experience dry eye symptoms.
What are some common symptoms of dry eye?
Dry eye can cause eye redness, itchiness, and dryness. Your eyes may feel irritated like there is grit or dirt inside. You may also have blurred vision or be sensitive to light. Watery eyes could be another symptom of this condition. A checkup from our optometry specialists can determine if you have dry eye so you can get proper treatment. If left unchecked, your symptoms could worsen, putting you at risk of corneal damage, eye infections, and scarring.
How is dry eye treated?
After evaluating your condition, your optometrist will recommend dry eye treatment. For mild symptoms, we may recommend over-the-counter eye drops to reduce your symptoms. For more severe cases, you may need prescription eye drops to stimulate tear production to lubricate your eyes. Punctal plugs may also be used to keep your tears from draining so they keep your eyes moist. Nutritional supplements can also help reduce symptoms.
Contact Our Optometry Specialists for Dry Eye Treatment
To schedule a consultation with our optometrists for dry eye diagnosis and treatment, contact Eye Care Center-Ballantyne in Charlotte, NC. Call our team today at (704)-541-5500 or reach us through our website by using our online contact form.