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Posted on 10-14-2015
According to the National Eye Institute, dry eye syndrome affects nearly 5 million people over age 50 in the U.S. It is a common eye health problem that can be a serious nuisance – especially when a person must gaze a screen for a long period of time or be exposed to a dry environment.
Dry eye syndrome is identified by the body’s inability to produce tears that will sufficiently lubricate the surface of the eye. Patients who suffer with this condition often complain of burning and itching sensations caused by irritation. Without treatment, this condition can cause damage to the eye, which may result in vision impairment and other complications, such as redness, blurred vision and eye fatigue.
Nearly anyone can develop dry eye syndrome, though certain population groups are at greater risk. The condition is especially common in people who take certain types of medications, such as antihistamines and certain blood pressure medications. It can also develop as a result of hormone replacement, allergies, autoimmune disorders, eye injuries and diseases of the eyelids and surrounding glands.
There is no need to suffer with blurry vision, redness, eye fatigue and discomfort caused by dry eye syndrome. At Michiana Eye Center, we offer treatments to alleviate inflammation caused by the condition and also encourage the eye to produce more quality tears. After a thorough examination and evaluation of symptoms, we can determine the most effective treatment for you.
If dry eye is found to be a secondary symptom caused by a health problem, the symptoms may resolved by treating the underlying condition. Similarly, you may find relief for dry eye by talking with your doctor about switching to a different medication or a different type of contact lens. Whenever possible, we recommend that patients try conservative treatments to treat dry eye symptoms, such as the use of a room humidifier, over-the-counter eye drops, and omega-3 fatty acid supplements.
If these changes do not resolve your dry eye, we may recommend one of several treatment options. For example, prescription anti-inflammatory medication is available to reduce inflammation and irritation in the eyes, improve tear production and help protect the cornea. In other cases, it may be necessary to perform a simple procedure to close drainage holes near the eye and retain the body’s natural tears longer. The drainage holes may be closed with temporary plugs or with a permanent surgical procedure.
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