Do I have Dry Eye Syndrome?
Dry eye syndrome, also known as Keratoconjunctivitis sicca is a prevalent condition affecting millions of men and women (women more often than men). It is characterized by dry, sandy, burning, irritated, red eyes, among other symptoms.
Although, the symptoms are due to lack of lubricating tears, sometimes it can lead to excessively watery eyes. Chronic dry eye can cause damage to the eye’s surface, eventually, resulting in inability to produce tears.
Left untreated, severe forms of dry eye can even damage your vision. Dry eye can be caused or aggravated by factors such as too much tear drainage, contact lens wear, aging, certain medications, different health problems and environmental factors (dry or windy weather, heaters, air conditioners).
Dry eye syndrome is treated with better lid hygiene, warm compresses, artificial tears to lubricate the eyes, medicated eye drops to reduce the ocular inflammation and increase tear production, laser cauterization or punctal plugs to reduce tear drainage, or newer technologies such as LipiFlow that increase the quality of the tears, and even with diet and special vitamin supplements specific for treating dry eye.
The treatment option that is best suited for you depends on many different factors and should be discussed with your eye care provider.