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Posts tagged ‘dry eye syndrome’

Do You Suffer From Dry Eye Syndrome?

When the eyes do not make enough tears, or tears begin to evaporate too quickly, dry eye syndrome occurs. This is usually a result of the oil glands becoming blocked or functioning abnormally. When this happens, your eyes can become dry, swollen, inflamed, and irritated. This is a condition that can soon become problematic, and it can prevent you from enjoying every day life as you should. If you feel that you are displaying the symptoms of dry eye syndrome, you should seek advice from an eye doctor.

Dry Eye Syndrome – The Symptoms

Depending on the nature of your condition, the symptoms of dry eye syndrome can range from mild to severe:

* Consistent feelings of dryness or grittiness that progressively worsen throughout the day.

* Bloodshot eyes.

* Eyelids that stick together when you wake up.

* Photophobia (sensitivity to light).

* Extremely red eyes.

* Extremely painful or irritated eyes.

* Blurred or deteriorating vision.

If you are experiencing any of the above symptoms, they should not be ignored. Catching dry eye syndrome as the milder symptoms start to show will prevent you from developing severe ones. If you are displaying severe symptoms, this could be a sign that you have sustained damage to your cornea, which could permanently affect your vision.

Dry Eye Syndrome – Causes

The causes of dry eye syndrome can vary. While some people may develop it due to living in a very hot or windy climate, others may experience it as a result of aging. In addition to this, medications like antihistamines, antidepressants, beta-blockers, and diuretics can also cause dry eye syndrome. Certain medical conditions can cause dry eye syndrome; these include dermatitis, allergic conjunctivitis, Sjogren’s syndrome, rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, shingles, Bell’s palsy, and HIV.

When dry eye syndrome does occur, it can come as a result of one or all parts of the eye’s tear production centers not functioning. This can include your lacrimal gland, your goblet cells, your eyelid, cornea, conjunctiva, and tear ducts. If one part of your lacrimal functioning unit does not function as it should, the others may fail to do so too.

Dry Eye Syndrome – Treatment

The treatment you will undergo for dry eye syndrome will depend on the severity of the problem. The most common way to treat this condition is through the use of lubricants, which can come in the form of eye drops, ointments, and gels. Although many of these are available without a prescription, the most effective ones can only be prescribed by an eye doctor.

If your eye doctor believes that your condition may be due to inflammation, you will be prescribed an anti-inflammatory medication. These can come in the form of steroid eye drop treatments, oral tetracyclines, or ciclosporing eye drops.

Sometimes it is the case that dry eye syndrome arises as a result of a complex underlying medical case. If this is the case, your eye doctor will assess and address the underlying cause of the disease. In extreme cases, surgery is needed to correct the parts of the eye that are not functioning as they should.

Regardless of the cause or severity of your condition, the sooner you seek treatment the better. Dry eye syndrome that is left untreated can rapidly worsen, and will become problematic. If you suspect you have the condition, contact an eye doctor as soon as possible.

Special thanks to Brighton Optical in Buffalo, NY for contributing this article.  Please visit the Brighton Optical website at and the Brighton Optical blog at

Dry Eye Want to Make You Cry? Learn Why

Dry eye solutions from Shawnee OpticalDry Eye Syndrome or Dry Eye is a catch-all term used to describe an abnormality with the tears of the eyes. Dry eye doesn’t necessarily mean your eyes are arid.  In fact, many people with dry eye have watery eyes.  Dry eye means there is a problem with the tear film of the eyes.

Dry eye can be extremely painful and uncomfortable with burning, stinging, aching and itching along with sensitivity to light, dryness, redness and blurry vision. Chronic dry eye can place significant limitations on your daily life both physically and mentally that prevent you from doing the things you want to do.

The tear film covering the surface of the eyes is made up of different layers. There is a watery (aqueous) middle layer, an oily (lipid) outer layer and a mucin (mucus) inner layer. Normal and properly balanced layers of the tear film are essential for eye health, clear vision and comfort. If an abnormality arises within any layer of the tear film, the tear film may not function properly and the symptoms of dry eye develop.

There are a wide variety of reasons and causes for dry eye including: insufficient production of tears, poor quality tears, aging, hormonal changes, external environment, contact lenses and medications.  The following takes closer look at the most common:

Meibomian Gland Dysfunction (MGD)

Meibomian Gland Dysfunction or MGD is a leading cause of dry eyes.  In fact, a majority of dry eye suffers have MGD.  With MGD, there is a reduction in the supply of oil or an abnormal composition of the oil produced by the Meibomian Glands. These glands are located in the upper and lower eyelids.  The oils produced by Meibomian Glands are used in the lipid (outer) layer of the tear film and prevent tears from evaporating too quickly. When the Meibomian Glands aren’t delivering the quantity or quality of oil needed in the lipid layer, dry eye will typically follow.


As we age, our bodies go through many changes. One of these changes is the natural decline in tear production.  As a result, dry eye is a common complaint of senior adults.


While not a specific cause of dry eye, your environment can magnify the affects of dry eye. Wind, heat, air conditioning and exposure to chlorine from swimming pools or showering all exaggerate and heighten the symptoms of dry eye. Extended time reading or using a computer can also aggravate dry eye symptoms.


Medications often bring side effects and dry eye is sometimes one of them. The following is a partial list of medications people have taken and reported experiencing dry eye:

  • Antihistamines:  Help to reduce allergies but studies have shown they can also decrease tear production.
  • Antidepressants:  Are known to cause ocular or eye-related drying.
  • Sleeping Pills: Both over the counter and prescription sleep aids may cause side of effects of dizziness, confusion, dry mouth and dry eyes.
  • Birth Control Pills: Birth control medications stimulate hormonal changes which may lead to dry eye symptoms.
  • Diuretics:  Commonly used medications for treatment of high blood pressure may cause dry eye.
  • Isotretinion Medications: Used to treat acne conditions but may also cause dry eye.

Dry Eye Treatment

While there is no specific cure for dry eye, it’s very important to discuss this condition with your eye doctor so he or she can properly diagnose the type of dry eye and develop the appropriate plan and guidance for you. There are a variety of treatments your eye doctor may utilize for dry eye symptoms including, but not limited to, artificial tear drops, lubricating gels, medications and plugs.

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