If you are experiencing itchy, burning, dry or watery eyes, you may have already tried picking up some over the counter eye drops to help freshen your eyes. For a few people, OTC drops might be enough, but all too often a bit more specialized eye care is needed by an optometrist is necessary.
Dry Eye is a condition where a person does not produce enough tears or does not produce quality tears. It takes multiple glands in and around the eyelids to produce tears, and there are several situations that may compromise the ability to make enough quality tears and have you heading to our West Hollywood eye doctor at Positive Eye Ons.
Aging - the ability to produce tears reduces with age
Reaction to medication -Antihistamines, decongestants, some antidepressants, and blood pressure medications can all potentially lower tear production
Some medical conditions- rheumatoid arthritis, diabetes, thyroid issues
Environment, including dry climates and smoke exposure producing increase tear evaporation.
Other eye treatments including long term contact lens wear and refractive eye surgery, including LASIK
Wearers of regular contact lenses are among those who have an increased risk of developing dry eye. If this happens eye care becomes more challenging because wearing traditional contact lenses feels like something foreign in the eye and causes discomfort. In these cases, our optometrist may recommend a type of hard to fit contact called scleral lenses. Scleral lenses extend under the upper and lower lids and rarely dislocate. Patients with damaged corneal tissue especially benefit, because these lenses don't touch the cornea, instead, the preservative-free saline solution helps to hydrate the eye surface. At Positive Eye On, we offer scleral contacts among our hard to fit contacts, and if your dry eye condition is connected to your wearing contacts, our optometrist will be happy to discuss this option.
Most of the time when dry eye occurs it is because not enough tears are produced at the water layer. This condition is called keratoconjunctivitis sicca (KCS), or dry eye syndrome. Symptoms include
General eye discomfort irritated, scratchy, gritty or burning sensation in the eyes or the feeling that there is a foreign object in their eyes
The goal of treatment for dry eye syndrome is to restore tear production to a normal amount. To accomplish this, your West Hollywood eye doctor may try various different approaches including
Adding tears - If your case is mild, over the counter eye drops or artificial tears may be recommended.
Conserving tears - Changing habits on how you use the television or computer may be recommended, as well as adding moisture to your environment can help ease symptoms.
Increasing tear production - Certain medications and vitamins may help increase tear production.
Treating inflammation in the eyelid or ocular surface - Warm compresses, eye drops, and ointments may lower inflammation.
If you are experiencing dry eye or any uncomfortable symptoms in your eyes, you shouldn't take them lightly. Exercising good eye care can make a big difference in your overall eye care and long term vision. To schedule an appointment with our optometrist, contact Positive Eye Ons in Los Angeles at