Dry Eye: Causes, Symptoms And Treatment

Dry Eye: Causes, Symptoms And Treatment

Dry eye is a condition that occurs when a person’s tear production and drainage is an imbalance. It results in a person not having sufficient tears of quality to nourish and lubricate the eye, or the tears evaporate faster. The surface of the eye develops dry spot thus can break down easily because the tear film is now unstable as a result of insufficient tears produced by the eye gland. Dry eyes often result in eye pain and sometimes poor eyesight as well. 

Types Of Dry Eyes

Dry eyes can occur in three ways via;

1.  Keratoconjunctivitis sicca is the type that occurs in the cornea and conjunctiva.

2. Keratitis sicca is the type that results in the dryness and also inflammation of the cornea.

3.  Dysfunctional tear disease occurs as a result of an insufficient quantity of tears.

Symptoms Of Dry Eye 

  • Itching in the eye
  • Redness of the eye
  • Burning sensation in the eye
  • Feeling of dryness in the eye

Here Are Some Causes Of Dry Eyes.

Age 

This also poses as one of the main reasons for dry eyes. However, the decrease in tears is proportional to age. So, the higher the age, the lesser the tears produced, thereby leading to dry eyes.

Excess Evaporation Of Tears

This results due to lacrimal insufficiency in tears production or evaporation. Hence the tear gland insufficiency arises.

Gender 

The oral contraceptive pills and also the hormonal changes associated with it make the dry eye disease more abundant in women than in men.

Medication 

Drugs such as phenothiazines, atropine, pain-relieving opiates, isotretinoin, vitamin A deficiency, sedatives, diuretics, and nasal decongestants also can cause dry eyes.

Medical conditions 

Patients diagnosed with diabetes are also at risk of having this disease. Other medical conditions like thyroid problems, rheumatoid arthritis also have a chance of having dry eyes.

Environmental Factors 

This involves focusing the air conditioner directly to the eyes, dusty environment, wind, putting, or looking into smoke can also lead to dry eyes.

Contact Lenses 

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Frequent use of eye contact lenses also poses a risk for dry eye and LASIK, which is a refractive eye surgery that leads to dryness of the eye.

Extended Exposure To Screen 

Blinking of the eyes tends to be minimal when concentration is on the computer or smartphones, especially while working with them, thereby increasing the risk for dry eyes.

Eyelid Problem 

This can be ectropion, in which the eyelid turns outside or entropion in which arises as the eyelid rolls inward. There also might be inflammation in the side of the eyelid, causing blepharitis, which also poses as a cause of dry eyes.

Dry Eyes Can Be Treated Thus By Doing The Opposite Of The Causes.

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Increasing Tear  

The doctor or optometrist can give the solution by prescribing ointment that can help boost tears production in the eyes.

Addition Of Artificial Tears 

This is often used to supplement natural tears, mostly in mild cases of dry eyes. It works by irritating the eyes to produce tears because of the few additives it contains.

Blockage Of Tear Ducts 

This regulates or conserves tears by blocking the tear ducts either by using gel plugs or silicones temporarily or permanently by surgery to ensure that tear is conserved, thereby keeping dry eyes in check.

Treatment Of The Inflammation 

The optometrist can prescribe ointments, lid massage, or compressor to prevent inflammation by the side of the eyelids to avoid eye dryness.

Tears play a key role in keeping eye lubricated and maintaining the vision. It helps to wash away dust or debris from the surface of the eyes, thereby aiding in the vision and repellent of microorganisms, which can cause infection. Keeping our body hydrated and blinking more help to prevent dryness of the eye. Eyes are one of the delicate organs of the body, and so should be handled with care.

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