If you have dry eyes, you know it immediately. Do your eyes tear up unexpectedly or feel like the Sahara? Are they red and bloodshot?
These are some of the symptoms that you may experience if you have dry eye. But there’s a lot more to dry eye than being uncomfortable. Keep reading to learn more about this condition!
Dry eye and its causes
Dry eye is a chronic eye condition that affects millions of people each year. When you have dry eye, it can manifest itself in several different ways.
With dry eye, it means that you are either not producing enough tears or your tears are low quality.
There are two kinds of dry eye: evaporative and aqueous tear deficient. The most common kind of dry eye is evaporative.
If you have evaporative dry eye, it is because of meibomian gland dysfunction, or MGD. With MGD, meibomian glands in the eyelids don’t secrete oil into your tears.
This means that you are producing tears that are low quality, resulting in MGD and dry eye.
If you have aqueous dry eye, it means that your meibomian glands aren’t producing enough tears. Rather than quality being a problem, the quantity of tears being produced is the problem.
Common dry eye symptoms
Unlike the name may suggest, symptoms of dry eye are not limited to having dry eye. Some of the more common dry eye symptoms include:
- Blurred vision
- Swollen eyes and eyelids
- Light sensitivity
- Itching, burning, or eye pain
- Watery eyes
If your dry eye symptoms are bothering you, treat them! Leaving your dry eye as is without treatment could make your dry eye worse. It could also lead to other painful eye complications.
Treating your dry eye naturally
Dry eyes driving you crazy? Try some of these natural treatment options!
Drink more water
If your eyes are dry, drinking more water can help! Water makes up quite a bit of the human body, so when you’re dehydrated, your whole body suffers.
Try to drink at least 8 glasses of water per day, if not more. This is an easy way to help rehydrate your dry eyes and stay hydrated at the same time!
Eat more foods with omega-3 fatty acids
Another easy way to rehydrate your eyes is eating more food with omega-3 fatty acids. Omega 3’s help restore moisture in your body.
These can be found in leafy greens, fish like salmon, and chia seeds. Can’t change your diet? You can take omega-3 fatty acids in supplement form as well!
These natural options may help, but if you want to treat dry eye at the root, you’ll need to explore medical options.
Dry Eye Treatments at Tuscaloosa Ophthalmology
If you’re suffering from dry eye after trying the above, visit Tuscaloosa Ophthalmology! We can help you treat your dry eye using the latest dry eye treatments.
When it comes to dry eye, each patient’s needs are different. We’ll check your eyes to determine what kind of treatment is best for you.
For most patients, we’ll start by prescribing artificial tears. Artificial tears are great for dry eye because they replace lost moisture.
By adding more lubrication to the eye, many patients see a reduction in their dry eye symptoms.
Another treatment for dry eye are punctal plugs. These can be either temporary or permanent.
Punctal plugs are inserted into the opening of the tear duct. These plugs stop tears from leaving the eye too quickly, and keep the eye well lubricated at the same time.
Tired of living with the irritating symptoms of dry eye? Contact Tuscaloosa Ophthalmology and schedule a dry eye consultation! You owe it to you and your eyes!