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Eye Consultants of Colorado

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Dry Eye Treatment

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Our Mountain Climate Often Exacerbates Dry Eye Symptoms. We Can Relieve Those Symptoms Through Effective Dry Eye Treatments

Dry eye is a common condition that thrives in arid climates like ours. In fact, it is the most common disease that we see in our office. It can be a frustrating condition for its sufferers, especially if traditional treatments are proving ineffective.

Caused by a lack of lubrication of the eye, dry eye can have meaningful impacts on your ability to work and play. Proper lubrication is critical for good vision as well as a healthy and comfortable eye surface.

Anyone can get dry eye, though heavy computer users, post-op surgical patients, contact lens wearers, and people over age 55 are the most prone to contract it. It can come for short periods, such as when caused by certain medications, or it may last for weeks, months, or more.

Dr. Morris is a nationally-renowned dry eye specialist. If you are suffering from chronic dry eye symptoms, book an appointment so that we can assess your eyes and provide appropriate treatment.

Important Information About Dry Eyes

Causes of dry eye

When the body is not able to make enough tears to protect the surface of the eye, cells on the front part of the cornea become sick or even die. If your tears are of poor quality and evaporate quickly, this can also cause dry eye. This leads to a variety of symptoms that affect both comfort and vision.

An arid environment, as well as prolonged reading or computer work, can often cause evaporation of the tear film. Dry eyes can also be caused by hormonal changes, allergies, auto-immune diseases, eye surgery, contact lens wear, eye infections, and drugs such as oral antihistamines, antidepressants, or hormone replacement therapy.

Other environmental factors, such as exposure to cigarette smoke or chemicals, can also stimulate dry eye symptoms.

  • Symptoms of dry eye – Dry eye symptoms include:
  • Blurred or hazy vision
  • Itchy, gritty, or burning sensation in your eye
  • Eye fatigue, especially when using a computer
  • A stringy discharge from the eye
  • Eye pain
  • Redness of the eye, eyelids, and surrounding tissue
  • Watery eyes and excessive eye watering
  • Diagnosing dry eye – An eye exam is the first step in a dry eye diagnosis. During this exam we will place emphasis on your tears- specifically, on the volume and quality of your tears.
Treating dry eye

There are many therapies available to treat dry eye by either increasing the quantity or quality of your natural tears, or by providing lubrication via artificial tears. The therapy that is right for you is dependant on the cause of your dry eye condition.

Common therapies include artificial tear preparations, lubricant ointments, and mechanisms for partial or total blockage of the drainage of the tear film (called punctal occlusion).  More advanced therapies include nutritional supplements as well as both oral and topical medications, such as restasis.

Many conditions do not have treatments that provide immediate results. It is normal to take a few months to significantly improve many of the symptoms. Dry eyes may need to be treated on a daily basis. Therapeutic goals are to control or eliminate the symptoms, maintain and preserve visual acuity, and prevent complications secondary to inflammation and drying out of the ocular surface.

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