WHAT IS DRY EYE SYNDROME?
Dry eye syndrome affects millions of Americans, and symptoms can range from occasional, mild irritation to debilitating and stubborn symptoms. Each time you blink your eye, tears spread across the surface of the cornea. Tears exist to provide lubrication to the eye, reduce the risk of infection and to wash away foreign matter in the eye. Excess tears drain out of the eye through small drainage ducts in the inner corners of the eyelid. Dry eyes occur when tear production and drainage are out of balance.
Patients with dry eye either do not produce good quality tears, or they simply do not produce enough tears. With the increased usage of phones and computers, our eyes are taking a hit.
Our Optometric Physicians at Exclusively Eyecare take it seriously to educate our patients on how they can not only treat their symptoms but also help prevent future damage. Computer usage has no plans of going away in our near future, we must prepare to protect our sight. While some patients have no idea their glands are dying off, other patients do experience painful symptoms. As odd as it is, an increase of tears or an appearance that you are crying, is a symptom of Dry Eyes. If you suspect that you are experiencing dry eye symptoms, or would like to have your glands checked in a complete eye exam, make sure to schedule an appointment with our team of Omaha doctors.
Those with dry eye will experience symptoms such as:
- Scratchy or burning eyes
- Foreign body sensation
- Excess watering
- Blurry vision
WHAT ARE THE RISK FACTORS OF DRY EYE SYNDROME?
Dry eye can be the result of quite a few things, including:
- Aging – Dry eyes are common as we reach our middle and later years.
- Gender – Women are more likely to experience dry eye. Because of hormone changes.
- Medical conditions – Those who have diabetes, thyroid problems and rheumatoid arthritis are more likely to experience dry eye syndrome. Blepharitis, another common eye disease, is also often accompanied by dry eye syndrome.
- Environmental conditions – Exposure to wind, smoke and dry climates can greatly increase tear evaporation, causing dry eye symptoms. Prolonged computer use can also take it’s toll on the eyes, as people often blink muss less when staring at a screen.
DRY EYE TREATMENT
How exactly is dry eye syndrome treated? Some patients try to reach for over the counter drops which may offer short term relief, but that is only masking the problem.
Treatments for dry eye syndrome include:
Tear conservation: This treatment method involves plugging the tear ducts with devices called “punctal plugs”. This allows tears to stay in the eye for longer, relieving symptoms.
Increasing tear production: Some doctors will prescribe an omega-3 fatty acid supplement regimen. Over time, this will help your eye produce healthier, more balanced tears.
If you are experiencing dry eye syndrome, call us to see what we can do for you. Dry eye syndrome can be frustrating, but we can help you live a life free of annoying dry eye symptoms!
At Exclusively Eyecare in Omaha, we give you a wide range of options for your dry eye and treatment needs. We proudly give the greater Omaha area premier services from start to finish. Our team realizes that each individual requires individual care. This is why Drs. Wolfe and Behrendt work with our patients from the diagnoses to the final treatments. Dry eye can be a nuisance and can bother your day to day life, schedule your appointment with us today by scheduling online or calling our office at (402) 250-3440!
Exclusively Eyecare is proud to be the area’s leading Dry Eye Clinic. Dr. Wolfe travels the country to train and educate other eye care physicians on the latest advancements to diagnosing and treating Dry Eye Disease. By doing this, we are able to test all the available options out there, and provide only the best to our patients to help achieve their best possible outcomes.
Some of these options include LipiFlow® Thermal Pulsation System as well as the TrueTear™ Intranasal Tear Neurostimulator. Some patients will need to use artificial tears to lubricate the eyes and replace the lack of moisture. The various eye drop regimen varies by patient.
LipiFlow® is a 12 minute procedure offered in our office. It is set up to be a relaxing way to restore your gland function by using a single use applicator that applies simultaneous heat and pressure to our patients’ eyelids to remove the gland contents and obstructions while reviving the eyes’ natural oil production.
With the LipiFlow® Thermal Pulsation System, our Physicians can warm and release oils that have hardened and clogged the glands responsible for the lubrication in your eyes. Consequently, this treatment addresses the root cause of dry eye rather than simply treating the symptoms of the condition.
The TrueTear™ Intranasal Tear Neurostimulator by Allergan is FDA-cleared to increase tear production in adults with dry eye. Exclusively Eyecare is one of the first practices in the Omaha area to offer TrueTear™ for patients who cannot produce enough tears to properly lubricate their eyes. The True Tear device has a list of benefits, all of which are all natural with no medications.
How It Works
After the TrueTear™ handheld device is inserted into the nose, the tip sends small electrical pulses into the tissue to stimulate tear production. Before each use, a new disposable tip is attached to the base. These tips are composed of a hydrogel material, similar to that of contact lenses, helping conduct the electrical current. The base has five levels of stimulation, allowing you to adjust the intensity until you feel a mild tingling. This sensation means you are touching the correct tissue, which leads to the formation of tears.
Helps increase your eyes’ natural ability to produce tears, which may be reduced by inflammation due to Chronic Dry Eye.
Xiidra improves patient-reported symptoms of eye dryness and signs of inferior corneal staining in clinical trials. By using the drops twice per day, patients can significantly reduce the chronic irritation and discomfort that comes with dry eye disease.