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Dry Eye Syndrome

Everyone has agitated eyes now and then, but some people experience that unpleasant dryness constantly. For those with consistent dry irritation with their eyes, the result becomes something called Dry Eye Syndrome.

What is Dry Eye Syndrome?

Dry Eye Syndrome, also known as chronic dry eye, is when the eye is unable to produce tears of good quality to properly lubricate the eye, or produce any tears at all for that matter. Symptoms include redness, itching and burning sensations, occasional tears that overflow, the perception of something being in your eye, mucus surrounding the outside of your eye, heavy or tired eyes, dryness, and blurry vision. Though it seems ironic for eyes to get watery as a symptom of this unfortunate condition, it results due to your body trying to overcompensate for the lack of moisture being properly rationed throughout the day.

Things that Affect Dry Eye

  • Environment: Constant arid or windy environments, whether inside with fans and the AC on or outside in various harsh climates, can take away the normalcy of your eyes getting to lubricate themselves as often as they should. Even being up in an airplane at a frequent amount of time begins to dry out your eyes at those altitudes.

  • Habits: Smoking is unhealthy for many reasons, but it can greatly diminish eye health from dry eye syndrome to even macular degeneration, so it's probably best to cut back on it. Another habit that affects our eyes drying out is living in this society where we are all constantly glued to the screen all day, from TV to computer screens to our phones, and focusing our attention on that prevents us from blinking as often as we naturally would.

  • Biology: As we age, our bodies slowly start to deteriorate in different ways and that includes the production of involuntary bodily functions, like the moisture in our eyes. Menopausal women go under great changes to their body that consistently fluctuates in production and lack of production of all kinds of hormones, natural lubricants, etc. and can face this challenge more than men their age.

  • Medications: Not all medications make everything go smoothly with our bodies. In fact, we take medications to fix one problem area at a time, which can throw our natural balance out of wack, including the normal lubrication in our eyes.

  • Others: There's plenty other things that can further chronic dry eye, such as medical conditions (like diabetes or blepharitis), some people find contact lenses to be a problem, a small effect as a result of an eye procedure that often only lasts for a short amount of time, and so on.

Dry Eye Treatment

There's plenty of ways to keep yourself healthy at home after looking at all these agitators listed above, it's all a matter of changing habits and being mindful. Here's a few tips to take care of your eyes on a daily basis:

  • Protect against harsh environments by wearing sunglasses outside, remember to blink consistently throughout the day, take breaks to close your eyes for a bit, and put moisture in the air, for example, utilizing a dehumidifier, to combat the dryness of the air.

  • Take breaks from your computer, putting it on a lower light setting and closing your eyes for a few moments here and there. Perhaps try the twenty-twenty rule, where every now and then, turn away from the screen and focus your eyes on an object twenty feet away for twenty seconds.

  • Stay away from smoking and other unhealthy habits and be mindful of any medications you are on or any medical conditions your body is combating, perhaps taking supplements.

While all these are great to practice a better, healthier lifestyle on your own, you can't entirely diagnose yourself and solve all of these health issues on your own. It's best to make an appointment with an optometrist to get tested and see what can be done. They may prescribe you some artificial tears to use on a regular basis to fit in place of the missing or insufficient tears your body produces.

NVISION Eyecare Solutions

NVISION Eyecare® optometrists, in Albany, Auckland specialising in the latest dry eye treatment.

If you live in the Albany Auckland are and feel you are experiencing chronic dry eye, you should make an appointment at NVISION Eyecare to meet with one of their great optometrists specialising in the latest dry eye treatment. At our initial dry eye evaluation, we can find a solution here:

1. Infra-Red Light Assessment, where we assess your tear volume and tear evaporation rate using the Oculus Keratograph.

2. Tear Osmolarity Assessment, where we take a sample of your tears to measure your tear osmolarity. You can think of this test as measuring how “salty” your tears are. This gives us an indication of the severity of your dry eye.

3. Tear Inflammation Test, a test we conduct called InflammaDry allows is to check for the presence of inflammatory mediators in your tears.

Through this testing, we can deduce the best mode of relief for you, be it our insertion of punctual plugs, or with our LipiFlow Thermal Pulsation System. Make yourself an appointment today here.