Dry eye is a very common eye condition which affects a lot of people at varying levels of degree.
The tear film consists of 3 important layers for function properly:
There are many reasons for dry eye to occur, it’s a much more complex condition than the name suggests but it can be due to these common reasons:
Environmental factors – such as wind, air conditioning, or heat
Block oil glands – this puts the different layers that make up the tear layer out of balance
Medications – some medications have side effects that include dry eye
Hormonal changes – this include menopause and pregnancy
Chronic diseases – such as Sjogren’s syndrome, rheumatoid arthritis and thyroid disease
Age – as your age increases, tear production decreases
Now that you have an understanding of what makes up tears and what causes your eye to get dry, we need to do something about it so that firstly you don’t feel uncomfortable but secondly, to ensure the eye is functioning in tip-top shape.
There are many ways to diagnose the different types of dry eye, but without getting too in-depth your optometrist will be able to look closely under a microscope or use other tools to figure out which part of the tears are causing the issue and looking at using the correct drops or further treatment to solve the problem.
I’ve been seeing a lot of people try eye drops not designed for treating dry eye, such as contact lens cleaning solutions, saline drops which dry your eye out more, or even some medications used to hide red eyes which only mask the problem rather than fixing the root cause. So it’s important to get to the cause of the problem so you’re able to treat your dry eyes with the right drops.