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Dry Eyes Evaluation

Dry Eyes Evaluation

Evaluation of Dry Eyes

We all have cried or shed tears of joy definitely more than hundred times ever since we were born. Ever wondered what these tears are and how they are made up of?

Tears are formed with water–assists to maintain the moisture, oils–assists in lubrication and keeping them oily, mucus–for even distribution, antibodies–to keep away the eyes from infections and proteins–tonourish and keep them healthy. Any imbalances in the amount or quality of these components make our eyes dry.

Dry eye’ is a condition where our eyes do not produce adequate amount of tears or its components or tears evaporate too fast from the eye.

What causes our eyes dry?

There are many causes which can make our eyes dry temporary or in long term.

  • Aging does certain changes in our body and this natural process itself can make eyes too dry.
  • Women who pass through menopause stage of their reproduction faces this trouble.
  • Even the pregnant mothers may experience dry eyes temporarily due to hormonal changes.
  • Women on hormone replacement therapy.
  • Skin disease on and around the eyes.
  • Diseases in the eye glands.
  • Allergies and reactions.
  • Disorders in the immune system.
  • Insufficient or excessive consumption of vitamin A.
  • Certain medical conditions such as diabetics and thyroid deficiencies
  • Side effects of certain medications such as birth control pills, blood pressure control medicines and Parkinson medicines.
  • Certain homeopathic remedies. 
  • Side effect of an eye surgery.
  • Infrequent blinking due to continuous focuson computer or television screens, reading or driving.
  • Using contact lenses for long term.
  • Eyelids structural problems which do not close the eyes properly.
  • Environmental factors such as heat, dry air, smoky environment or air conditioning.

What are your symptoms of dry eyes?

Untreated dry eyes damage the eye surface, causes inflammation, infection and vision problems and performing the day to day activities become problematic. Therefore, do not ignore the symptoms of dry eyes and consult a specialist as early as possible of any prolonged symptoms to reduce the complications. Here is a list of symptoms –

  • Pain or discomfort in the eyes
  • Feeling as something is inside the eye or ‘Sandy gritty’ sensation
  • Tearing excessively after feeling your eyes dry for a very long period
  • Eyes appearing red
  • Heavy eyelids
  • Burning or itchy feeling in the eyes
  • Blurred vision
  • A rough discharge from the eyes
  • Inability to read, drive or look at something constantly
  • Inability to tear when something gets into the eye or when you are emotionally stressed
  • Feeling your contact lenses uncomfortable
  • Sensitivity to light

Treating dry eyes

Dry eyes are treated by your doctor choosing the right method on a case by case basis. The suitable procedure will depend on the cause and severity of dry eyes.

Your doctor will do a complete diagnosis on your eyes and your overall health. He will ask questions on your eye history, gene carried eye issues and your medications. He will also measure the volume and quality of your tears. In addition, some patients will have to go through scanning tests of the eyes in order to find any abnormalities in the function of tear gland (meibomian gland)and the severity of its loss.

Various interventions are available to treat dry eyes and all of them depend on the root-cause and the severity.

Here we will discuss number of such Dry eye treatment. Your eye doctor might recommend you one or combination of different methods.

Artificial Tears

This is usually the first step in treating dry eyes. For a mild eye dryness, this alone works well without any further treatments. If you are using an artificial tear brand with the recommendation of a doctor, make sure to use it exactly how it was prescribed for you and do not substitute another brand.

You should be very careful in selecting a product for you if you are buying without a prescription. Artificial tears are available to buy over the counter in many brands in different ingredients and serving different purposes. You would come across tear drops in two types of thickness: light and heavy.

Light ones are more watery type and can give instant solution although it will last only for a short period and you may have to apply frequently.

Heavy ones last for a longer time but gives a blurred vision for first few minutes you applied and it is better to have a good retention time in order to gain a satisfactory relief. However, your ophthalmologist is the best judge to decide which type suits your eye depending on the severity of the condition.

Nutritional Supplements

According to many studies and recommendations by doctors, food containing Omega3 such as cold water fish, almonds and walnuts can be used in treating dry eyes whereas green vegetables like Palakh and well known carrot are good for the prevention of this condition.

Additionally, drinking lot of water will keep you as well as your eyes, hydrated in a long term basis.

Other remedies

  • Take breaks during constant reading, driving or computer use
  • Do not forget to blink your eyes frequently
  • You should remove your eye makeups thoroughly at the end of the day
  • Keep your eyelids clean
  • Use good quality shades/sunglasses
  • Consult your doctor if you feel dry eyes after using certain medicines.

Be aware of the symptoms, be cautious of the causes, prevent the disease and treat them early.

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