Dry eye syndrome is a common eye ailment affecting millions of people today. If you have dry eye, your eyes no longer produce sufficient amounts of quality tears to keep them lubricated and moist. As a result, you’re more susceptible to eye infections and diseases. The answers to the following FAQs from 2020 Vision Place in Sunrise explain more about this eye condition.

What Causes Dry Eye?

Dry eye is the result of a breakdown in your tear production system. Your eyes may stop producing tears due to aging, medications you’re taking, medical conditions you have, menopause, overexposure to environmental elements (sun, wind, pollen, dust, etc.), computer overuse, or eye disorders and conditions.

In some dry eye cases, the eyes produce excessive tears. However, these are of poor quality, making them of little use in relieving dry eye symptoms.

Why Are Tears Important?

Tears are essential to eye health as they lubricate your eyes and keep them free from irritants and infections. Lack of tears can lead to red, itchy, dry eyes that are constantly irritated. Left unchecked, dry eye can impair your vision or lead to more serious eye conditions.

What Are the Symptoms of Dry Eye? 

If you have dry eye, your eyes may be constantly red, dry and itchy. They may feel irritated like there’s something inside. Your eyes may water constantly or develop a discharge. You may even experience blurry or cloudy vision.

Who’s at Risk for Developing Dry Eye?

People who use computers frequently may develop dry eye symptoms due to infrequent blinking. Seniors are more vulnerable to dry eye as tear production diminishes with age. If you work outdoors, you’re at greater risk of dry eye due to overexposure to the sun and environmental elements that cause eye irritations. People who use antihistamines, antidepressants, or antibiotics frequently are also at risk for dry eye, as these products can lead to dry eye syndrome.

Can Dry Eye Cause Vision Loss?

The short answer is no. However, left untreated, dry eye can cause more troublesome eye conditions like infections or chronic conjunctivitis. You may even experience blurry vision due to excessive dryness or rubbing of itchy eyes. Again, Dry eye itself is unlikely to cause permanent vision loss.

How Is Dry Eye Diagnosed and Treated?

Through routine optometry care, our doctors at 2020 Vision Place in Sunrise can diagnose dry eye syndrome. Treatments range from over the counter eye drops for mild cases of dry eye to prescription medications for severe dry eye conditions. Your optometric specialist may also recommend tear duct plugs to help conserve the tears your eyes do produce and ointments to treat inflamed eyelids.

See Our Sunrise Optometrist for Dry Eye Diagnosis and Treatment

To schedule an eye exam for dry eye diagnosis, contact 2020 Vision Place in Sunrise at 954-851-9949 today.