Dry eye disease now affects many Americans. From adults to children, more than half the population suffers from dry eye disease. The most common causes range from increased aging, medical conditions such as allergies, inflammatory diseases (Rheumatoid Arthritis, Lupus, Sjogren’s Disease), diabetes, certain medications (antihistamines, birth control pills, nasal sprays) and now, computers and handheld devices (games kids play and tablets). Each of these result in evaporation of the tear film from the surface of the eyes which leads to dry eye disease. Chronic lack of lubrication and moisture in the eye causes ocular stress which results in a cycle of inflammation to the eyes. Once this circle of inflammation starts, it causes symptoms that can range from blurred vision, tearing, irritation and discomfort, inability to wear contact lenses, mucous discharge, and in some cases pain.
Many patients have dry eye disease, but they do not have symptoms. The only way to confirm this condition is by a specific evaluation done by your eye care provider. The eyelids, the gland responsible for production of a large component of the tear film, and the ocular surface needs to be carefully evaluated to determine what is causing the tears to evaporate. Once this is known, proper treatment can be recommended to resolve the symptoms. Sometimes, the treatment may also require you to have medical tests to determine if there is a medical condition that is the cause. Thanks to modern technology, advances have been made to allow the evaluation and treatment to be more effective. In minutes, with the right equipment, your eye care provider can assess the health of the oil glands that are responsible for the tear film. With this information, immediate attention can be given to preserve these glands so that they produce and release oil properly. If you have dry eye symptoms, ask your eye care provider to perform a dry eye evaluation with you. The sooner you know what is going on, the sooner your eyes can start feeling and seeing better.
Our office has the equipment necessary to assess you for dry eye disease. If you need an eye care provider, I invite you to visit:
EnVision Eye Care. 321 W. Montgomery Crossroads, Savannah
(across from Hunter Golf
Course) For appointments, call (912)