Dry eye syndrome is a common eye condition that occurs when you do not produce enough tears to keep your eyes adequately lubricated. For some people, the condition is very mild. However, if left untreated, dry eye syndrome can lead to serious health issues. That’s why Dr. Jay Rigney is ready to help. Our Owasso clinic offers the testing and treatment options you need to prevent dry eyes from negatively impacting your life.
What Causes Dry Eye?
Dry eye can be due to decreased tear production or increased tear evaporation. The causes of dry eye syndrome due to decreased tear evaporation include:
- Age: As you get older, your eyes produce fewer tears.
- Medical conditions: Dry eye is a symptom of certain medical conditions, including allergic eye disease, lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, thyroid disorders, sarcoidosis, and vitamin A deficiency.
- Medication: Certain medications list dry eye as a side effect, including decongestants, antihistamines, antidepressants, acne medication, high blood pressure medication, and birth control.
The causes of dry eye due to increased tear evaporation include:
- Eye allergies
- Exposure to dry air, wind, or smoke
- Your eyelids turn inward or outward
- Blinking less often when reading, using the computer, or driving
- Posterior blepharitis
What Are the Symptoms of Dry Eye?
Dry eye syndrome causes several symptoms. Some people experience just one or two symptoms, while other experience multiple. Common symptoms include:
- Feeling like you have something in your eyes
- Burning or stinging
- Stringy mucus in the eyes
- Watery eyes due to the irritation
- Blurry vision
- Eye fatigue
- Trouble wearing contact lenses
- Trouble driving at night
How Is Dry Eye Diagnosed?
Our eye doctor can detect dry eye syndrome during your annual eye exam. If we suspect you have dry eye syndrome, our optometrist will perform a Schirmer test. During this test, we place a blotting strip under your lower lid to measure the number of tears absorbed by the strip. If your dry eye is due to increased tear evaporation, our eye doctor can use eye drops containing a special dye to measure how long it takes for your tears to evaporate.
How Is Dry Eye Treated?
There are a few treatments for dry eye. The one our eye doctor chooses will depend on the severity of your condition. The treatment options include:
- Artificial tears
- Drugs to stimulate tear production
- Punctal plugs to close your tear ducts to keep the tears from draining too quickly
Contact Us for Your Next Eye Exam in Owasso
If you think you have dry eye syndrome, contact Dr. Rigney Eyecare & Eyewear. We treat patients in Bartlesville, Collinsville, and Owasso. Our optometrist will test your eyes and create a treatment plan personalized for your unique eye care needs. To schedule an appointment, give us a call today.