What exactly is dry eye disease? When should you see your eye doctor? Are dry eyes a serious condition? Read this quick guide to learn the answers to those questions and more. 

Are Dry Eyes a Serious Condition?

Dry eye disease is a serious condition that leads to troubling symptoms and distress. It’s a rather common condition that occurs when your tears do not provide enough lubrication for your eyes. This tear instability causes inflammation and can damage the surface of your eye. 

What Causes Dry Eye Disease?

There are a variety of causes. Dry eye disease can be triggered by a decrease in tear production, an increase in tear evaporation, hormone changes, autoimmune disease, or inflamed eyelid glands. 

What Are the Symptoms of Dry Eye Disease?

Typically, the symptoms of dry eye disease affect both eyes. If you experience any of the following for a longer than normal period of time, you should see your eye doctor as soon as possible: 

  • Itching 
  • Burning
  • Stinging
  • Redness
  • Watery eyes
  • Blurred vision
  • Eye fatigue
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Stringy mucus in or around your eyes
  • The sensation of having something in your eye
  • Inability to comfortably wear contacts
  • Difficulty driving at night

How Does an Eye Doctor Diagnose Dry Eye Disease?

Your diagnosis begins with a discussion about your medical history and other health conditions including the medications you’re taking. You’ll also have a comprehensive eye exam. Your eye doctor will also want to conduct tests to determine the quality, output, and composition of your tears. 

What Is the Treatment for Dry Eye Disease?

In many cases, the use of over-the-counter tear drops can ease the symptoms of dry eye disease. If a health condition is the cause of your dry eyes, often treating the health condition itself will ease symptoms. If those options don’t work, your doctor might suggest additional options. 

Prescription medications to reduce inflammation, eye inserts, and a nasal spray are good choices. Your eye doctor may also recommend closing your tear ducts to reduce the loss of tears, unblocking oil glands with Blephex, or wearing special contact lenses.

It is also possible to find some relief through home remedies. You might try non-preservative eye drops, applying a warm wash rag to your eyes, or washing your eyes with a gentle soap like baby shampoo (no tears formula.)

Where Can I Find the Best Eye Doctor in Boynton Beach for Dry Eye Disease?

If you are troubled with chronic dry eyes, contact us today at South Palm Eye Associates! We understand how difficult this condition can be to treat on your own, so please don’t delay treatment when our Dry Eye Center of Excellence is just a phone call away. Give us a call at 561-737-4040 today!