Relief for Dry Eye Irritation
Are you bothered by painful eye irritation caused from dry eyes? If so, our Kelowna eye doctors can help soothe your sore eyes. We are knowledgeable about a variety of effective dry eye treatments. Schedule an eye exam at Vision Support Centre and we will check your eyes thoroughly to determine the cause of your dry eye syndrome. This is the most reliable way to diagnose your condition and recommend a personalized treatment plan to restore your comfortable vision.
Usual Symptoms of Dry Eye
Every individual experiences dry eyes differently, however the most typical symptoms include:
- Red or pink eyes
- Scratchy sensation
- Stinging or burning eyes
- Constant need to rub eyes or blink
- Gritty sensation, like sand is stuck in your eye
- Uncomfortable contact lenses
- Blurry vision
- Watery eyes (dry eyes can trigger excess tear production)
None of the above symptoms of dry eye syndrome are sight-threatening or dangerous, yet they can interfere greatly with your quality of life. Routine daily tasks can become a disturbing challenge when vision is uncomfortable, such as viewing a computer or reading. There’s no reason to suffer with the pain of dry eye; contact us to reserve an appointment for treatment in our Kelowna, BC, office.
Causes of Dry Eye
Dry eye syndrome is just as it sounds – it is a lack of moisture on the surface of your eyes. This inadequate lubrication can be due to a poor quality tear composition (Meibomian Gland Dysfunction), or a low production of tears (aqueous tear-deficient dry eye). In sum, you need the correct amount of tears with enough lipids in them, so they don’t evaporate too quickly and leave your eyes dry.
This lack of moisture can result from various environmental conditions, health issues, and lifestyle habits. The most common culprits include:
- Long periods spent reading or viewing a computer, which leads to less blinking
- Wearing contact lenses
- A problem with your tear producing glands, such as blepharitis
- Air-conditioning or heating
- Extreme temperatures, strong winds, a dry climate
- Systemic disease, such as rosacea, rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, or Sjogren’s Syndrome
- Side effects of certain medications, such as antihistamines, antidepressants, blood pressure drugs
- Aging, particularly with females
- Hormone replacement therapy
- Post-LASIK procedures
- Pollution in your atmosphere, including from cigarette smoke
Dry Eye Treatment
Our Kelowna eye doctors will design a treatment plan to address your individual case of dry eye. That’s why detecting the cause of your dry eye syndrome through a comprehensive eye exam is so important. Remember, the best treatment for one patient may not be helpful for another.
Medication for dry eye includes:
- Topical therapy, such as prescription and non-prescription lubricating eye drops or ointments
- Artificial tear inserts, which release moisture gradually into your eyes
- Restasis© hydration masks
- Antibiotics to reduce the bacteria in your eyes that destroy healthy lipids in tears
- Punctal Plugs: for very severe cases of dry eye, our dry eye doctor may insert punctal plugs, which are small silicone plugs to block tear drainage. This is a quick, in-office procedure.
LipiFlow by TearScience©
Our Kelowna eye care center is the exclusive provider of the innovative LipiFlow Therapy in the Okanagan. LipiFLow is a revolutionary and highly effective system that uses thermal pulsation to improve the function of meibomian glands. It is a drug-free, safe and FDA-approved therapy that takes only 10-12 minutes to perform.
Ways to Self-Treat and Prevent Dry Eye
Pay close attention to any possible causes for your dry eyes. If you can pinpoint the cause, such as an a/c vent blowing on your face, you will be well-equipped to prevent this uncomfortable eye condition.
Our Kelowna eye doctors share some helpful tips:
- Use over-the-counter artificial tears to provide temporary relief; check with our optometrists about recommended brands
- Install a humidifier in your home and office to add moisture to the atmosphere
- Use an air filter to remove airborne irritants
- Wear sunglasses (wraparounds are ideal) to block wind and ultraviolet rays
- Take omega-3 nutritional supplements to help your eyes produce and maintain lubrication
- Drink enough to stay well hydrated
- Warm compresses can stimulate tear production
- Eyelid scrubs can help unclog tear ducts
Want to experience relief from your dry eye irritation? Call today to schedule an eye exam with your dry eye specialists in Kelowna, BC.