What are the symptoms of a dry eye?
Symptoms can include a sandy, gritty feeling, something in the eye, a scratchy or itchy eye.
The severity can be mild to severe.
Why do we experience dry eye symptoms?
The eye produces a tear film on each blink which contains many components that keeps the front of the eye clean and healthy. However, when this tear quality deteriorates the sensory nerves on our eyes triggers a warning signal that indicates something is not right, hence the symptoms.
What causes the tears to deteriorate?
There are many factors and influences and I have listed a few below:
A) Environmental e.g. Air conditioning
B) Medications e.g. antihistamines or antidepressants
C) Systemic Diseases e.g. Rheumatoid Arthritis
D) Allergies e.g. hay fever
E) Ageing e.g. post-menopausal women
How can dry eyes be treated?
Artificial tear supplements are readily available over the counter. However, they will usually relieve the symptoms temporarily, and as each commercially available tear supplement is different, they will have a limited effect depending on the tear film component that is deficient.
Should I see my Optician?
If the condition has been long standing there could be multifactor causes which can exasperate the condition with time.
An in depth examination by a qualified Optometrist to evaluate the possible cause(s) can help direct the sufferer to the right remedy.