Suffering from dry eyes
Suffering from dry eyes can make it very difficult for people to open their eyes in the morning, function well at work or read a book or look at a tablet, or look at the television or computer at night.
The symptoms of dry eyes include stinging, burning, sandy blurred vision and heavy eyelids, light sensitivity and even secondary watering. Dry eyes occur where there are not enough tears produced such as after the menopause, with diseases of the skin, with pregnancy, with certain drugs such as antihistamines, certain medications for anti-blood pressure, birth control pills, with antidepressants, following LASIK and PRK surgery, etc. There are so many different causes of dry eyes, but the most common one is because your body does not make enough tears. Tear production reduces with the glancing age, but dry eye can occur at any age. Prevention is a key factor which we always forget.
Tips for preventing dry eyes are:
- Avoid hair dryers
- Avoid air-conditioning in offices or car
- Avoid windy environments
- Avoid all smoke
- Reduce time spent on screen work on either phone, tablet, computer or TV.
Tips to help:
- Use a humidifier
- Take frequent breaks when spending long hours driving or using a computer
- If you are doing sport indoors or outdoors, use protective swim or ski goggles or other protective eyewear to help maintain moisture around the eyes. Outdoor wind can be very drying on the eyes, particularly in the mountains, as well as UV light which further damages them.
If you have a concern about dry eyes, you should see an ophthalmologist such as Ms Jane Olver, Ms Laura Crawley or Mr Jaheed Khan at Clinica London who will be pleased to help determine the cause of your dry eyes and provide you with advice. We offer more than just artificial tears. Dry eye is often associated with blepharitis and meibomian gland dysfunction, therefore eyelid care at home supplemented by treatments at the clinic with BlephEx and MiBo Thermoflo and changes to your diet with increased Omega 3 fatty acids from fish or supplements all can contribute.
Demodex infection can be an issue in a small proportion of patients who have blepharitis and dry eyes.
At a consultation, a full history is taken, and ocular examination is done with tear osmolarity, intraocular pressures and slit lamp examination. A treatment plan is made, and you are given clear directions on treatment during the first two months, then four months, six and eight months. Correcting dry eyes and managing blepharitis and meibomian gland dysfunction is not an overnight miracle but takes time and perseverance with the patient, doctor and nurse working closely together.