Dry eye syndrome is an extremely common condition experienced by millions across the globe. Also referred to as ocular surface disease, dry eye is often chronic and can have a significantly debilitating effect on your daily life. The symptoms of dry eye disease affect patients in different ways; however, some of the most common include:
With that in mind, what exactly causes dry eye syndrome? The answer is dependent on your individual circumstances. There are two major forms of dry eye disease: evaporative dry eye and aqueous-deficient dry eye. Most patients experience the evaporative type, which is caused by a condition known as MGD (meibomian gland dysfunction). MGD is characterized by the blockage of glands inside your eyelid that produce the oily layer of tears. This often results in the tear film drying out more quickly than it normally would. Eyelid/lash infections and not blinking at a normal rate can contribute to MDG. Aqueous-deficient dry eye syndrome is less common; however, it is still experienced by many individuals. This form of the condition is characterized by a lack of water produced in the tears.
A number of other factors have been attributed to dry eye syndrome, including spending lots of time in low-humidity or otherwise dry environments; certain medications; anatomical irregularities with the eyes; and some forms of health conditions and diseases. You can learn more about causes and symptoms on our comprehensive dry eye syndrome page, which also describes advanced treatment options available from our experienced eye doctors at Gulfcoast Eye Care.
We offer a number of procedures that can significantly reduce the symptoms associated with dry eye disease, including the state-of-the-art LipiFlow® treatment. Our ophthalmologist, Dr. Michael Manning, has undergone the LipiFlow® procedure himself and has experienced the successful results of this treatment firsthand.
For more information on effective treatment options for dry eye syndrome, or to schedule a consultation and eye evaluation, please contact us today. You can also take a quick dry eye self-evaluation test and submit it to our practice online.