Sometimes the body suffers from decreased tear production or increased tear film evaporation. In these cases it is possible to suffer from dry eye, also medically referred to as keratoconjunctivitis (KCS), xerophthalmia or dry eye syndrome (DES). This ailment is most commonly found in humans but is also present in some animals. The tears that are produced by the eye are necessary to have clear vision and maintain overall eye health, a lack of tear production can harm your vision.
What can cause dry eye syndrome or keratoconjunctivitis?
- Hormonal changes
- Normal aging process
- Environmental irritants
- Problems with normal blinking
- Medications (antihistamines, oral contraceptives and antidepressants)
- UV exposure
How will dry eye harm my eye health?
Dry eye syndrome is most harmful to the ocular system if left untreated. If suffering from excessive dry eye you may experience tissue damage and possible scarring to your corneal tissues which can impair vision. If you wear contact lenses to help your vision, dry eye can cause irritation and raise the risk of eye infection. In order to fully subdue dry eye syndrome you must work closely with an Optometrist and follow their instructions carefully. It is important to let Drs. Tod Davis and Amy Carlyle know immediately if treatment or prescriptions for your dry eye syndrome are not working adequately.
Will there be symptoms related to dry eye syndrome?
There can be multiple signs that you are suffering from dry eye. You may experience excessive tearing in a physiological response to dryness. Other symptoms include gritty, stinging, scratchy and uncomfortable eyes, fluctuating vision, and/or a burning feeling or the feeling of a foreign object in the eye.
In order to properly diagnose DES, you must get an examination with an optometrist who can assess your medical history and current physical state in order to determine what may be causing your symptoms. Drs. Tod Davis and Amy Carlyle can help and may need to do further dry eye testing including combining special dyes and a microscope to evaluate tear distribution and tear quantity in your body.
Can dry eye be cured?
The first step to curing dry eye syndrome is to make an appointment at one of our 4 convenient office locations so that we can do further testing and assess the exact cause of your DES. Drs. Tod Davis and Amy Carlyle Developmental Optometry and Vision Therapy Services is one of the best optometry offices in Virginia for accurately diagnosing the cause of eye ailments and vision problems, including dry eye.
Dry eye is generally chronic and incurable, but can be remedied for a short time utilizing artificial tears which will also reduce the risk of harming the eyes. If the DES is an extreme case there are gels and ointments that can be used before bed. It is also possible that adding fish and flax seed oil to your diet will help your body to naturally solve the problem of dry eye.
It is important to always consult with an optometrist , like Drs. Tod Davis and Amy Carlyle, before attempting any remedy, they will know precisely which drops, gels or ointments will be most appropriate for your specific needs.