HomeDry Eye Syndrome, Causes and Treatment
Millions of people around the world suffer from chronically dry eyes. The underlying cause often referred to as “dry eye syndrome,” relates to the insufficient production of natural lubrication within the eye and/or, more commonly, excessive evaporation of tears from the eye. Dry eyes may occur because of a medical condition, injury, and even as a natural part of the aging process, such as during menopause. Dry eyes may even present in younger people, without any underlying conditions, due to excessive screen use and poor blinking habits.
Symptoms include persistent dryness, a burning feeling or fluctuating vision. Some patients report sensations of having a foreign body in the eye. Paradoxically, some individuals experience very watery eyes without relief as the eyes overcompensate for the dryness.
What are some of the reasons you may experience chronic dry eyes, and what options do you have to correct the problem?
Dry Eye Causes
There are two main causes of dry eye syndrome. The first is a decrease in quality tear production. This can happen for a number of reasons including:
- Medical conditions such as Sjogren’s syndrome, Graft vs. Host disease, rheumatoid arthritis, Vitamin A deficiency, lupus or thyroid disorders
- Corneal nerve sensitivity
- Medications such as antidepressants or antihistamines
The second cause of dry eye syndrome is increased tear evaporation. This can happen as a result of:
- Eye allergies
- Digital eye strain
- Preservative found in topical eyedrops
- Posterior blepharitis (also known as meibomian gland dysfunction)
In Office Dry Eye Treatments
At the Miami Contact Lens Institute, we offer a variety of in office dry eye treatments. After a comprehensive eye exam, you may be a suitable candidate for one of these cutting edge treatments.
For decades, artificial tears in the form of eye drops have been the go-to treatment for dry eye. Many such products are sold over-the-counter, but some, such as Cyclosporin (Restasis and Cequa), use pharmaceutical agents to help interrupt the inflammatory pathway in dry eye. The scleral lens is also a wonderful option for treating dry eyes.
We also offer TearCare, a customizable and wearable treatment technology designed to target the underlying cause of your dry eyes by working with you as you blink. In people with normal eyes, tears flow continually onto the surface of the eye to keep it lubricated and protected. TearCare helps clear any obstructions and restore normal tear flow.
A Lipiflow® treatment uses gentle thermal pulses to unblock the eyelid oil glands. We use Lipiscan ™ Dynamic Meibomian Imaging ™ to get a high-definition internal view of your oil glands. The technology allows your physician to understand your level of oil gland blockage.
One of the benefits of a Lipiflow treatment is that it is pain free and over in a matter of minutes. The results of this treatment develop in the following days and weeks and can last anywhere from months to years in some cases.
If you have been diagnosed with Blepharitis, which is a persistent eyelid inflammation, a BlephEx Treatment can help to ease the irritation of dry eye and address this condition.
Advanced Zocushield™ Cleanse
An Advanced Zocushield™ Cleanse applies a hibiscus-infused compound to cleanse the eyelid margins making your eyes and skin appear healthier and more natural.
Scleral lenses are a type of advanced custom-made contact lens designed for a unique fit over the cornea and conjunctiva of the eye. Scleral lenses feature vaults over the cornea and limbus and provide a fluid layer keeping the surface of the eye well-hydrated, potentially eliminating those feelings of dry itchiness.
Schedule Your Appointment at MCLI Today
You don’t have to endure the discomfort of chronically dry eyes. These advanced treatment options for dry eyes are available at our state-of-the-art Miami practice right now. Get evaluated by one of our friendly and experienced optometrists today.