What is Dry Eyes?
Dry eyes is considered the most common eye condition today, with as many as 90% of people that work on a computer suffering from dry eye symptoms in Houston. There are a few causes of dry eyes such as Meibomian Gland Disorder (MGD), Blepharitis, hormonal changes, medications, environmental issues such as smoking or having a heater lit, and insufficient blinking due to computer and phone usage.
Does Dry Eyes affect women more than men?
Women are much more likely to have dry eyes than men. One of the main reasons for the higher incidence of dry eyes with women, is hormonal changes due to menapause, pregnancy, and birth control. Thyroid and other autoimmune issues can also exacerbate your dry eye symptoms.
What can I do at home to reduce symptoms of dry eyes?
Our optometrists in the Woodlands and other Eye Trends locations, recommend that all patients schedule a dry eye exam if they experience symptoms such as dry, watery, painful, red eyes. In addition to the eye exam, there are many steps that can reduce the severity of symptoms including:
- Sleeping without a heater at night.
- Taking blink breaks while on the computer every 20 minutes
- Eating a diet rich in Omega 3 and omega 7
- Removing environmental irritants such as cigarette smoke
Luckily we live in a time with rapid advancements in contact lens technology. A patient who 5 years ago was unable to wear contacts because of discomfort, has many options today. For most patients our optometrists recommend soft daily disposable contacts that are designed specifically for dry eye patients. They are made from a more breathable material that has a higher water content, which leaves your eyes feeling fresh over the course of the day.
Our Houston optometrists will recommend a treatment option that addresses the cause of your dry eyes. Medications such as Xiidra and Restasis are often combined with eye drops as an effective treatment option. In many cases our eye doctors will recommend warm compresses and nutritional supplements. In more severe cases patients may need more intensive treatment options, especially if the patient has meibomian gland disorder, sjorgens syndrome or blepharitis.