Do you regularly experience discomfort or a burning sensation in your eyes? You may suffer from chronic dry eye, a condition that occurs when your eyes fail to adequately lubricate themselves. This can happen if you produce an insufficient amount of tears or if the tears are of a lesser quality.
Over the years, the doctors at Schwartz Laser Eye Center have helped many patients in Arizona to overcome eye irritation with dry eye treatments. In this blog, they explain some of the reasons why you may develop the condition:
Causes of Dry Eye
Many factors can play a role in the development of dry eye, including:
- Looking at a computer screen for long periods of time
- Your tears evaporate too quickly
- Age (dry eye is more common among senior citizens)
- Medications like antidepressants, decongestants and antihistamines can reduce tear production
- Dry climate
- Wind exposure
- Smoke exposure
- Air conditioning and/or indoor heating
- Inflammation of the eyelids
- Long-term contact lens use
- Hormonal changes (often spurred by pregnancy, birth control or menopause)
- Frequent use of cosmetics
- Insufficient blinking
- Immune disorders such as rheumatoid arthritis or lupus
Not all cases of dry eye can be attributed to a single cause; many patients develop dry eye due to a combination of factors. If you experience dry eye because of an environmental factor, you may be able to make lifestyle changes to overcome the condition. However, if these changes are unhelpful or difficult to make, more aggressive treatment may be required.
While many people choose to ignore chronic dry eye symptoms, experiencing discomfort on an ongoing basis is unnecessary. Thankfully, treatments are available to provide relief to your eyes.
For most patients, the first step is to try eye drops. In mild to moderate cases of dry eye, simply lubricating the eyes may be sufficient to provide relief. In more serious cases, medicated eye drops may be warranted to fight corneal inflammation or encourage additional tear production.
To speak about dry eye and determine which treatment might be best for you with the most respected team of eye doctors in the Scottsdale, Glendale, Phoenix and Mesa, Arizona areas, please schedule an appointment by calling (480) 483-3937 today.