Dry Eyes: A Common Issue

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Have you experienced Dry Eye? It is a very common condition, especially in a dry climate like Colorado. In fact, a study published in “Cornea” found that the annual financial impact on the US healthcare system is $3.8 Billion!

Dry Eye is often very uncomfortable and makes it hard to get day to day things done. Symptoms vary from person to person, but include eyes feeling irritated, gritty, or even watery. At Carbon Valley Eye Care we are able to identify and address this condition early, which results in improved long term outcomes.

Many factors can increase your risk for Dry Eye. Screen time (including phones, computers, and tablets) can cause Dry Eye, because we blink much less when we look at screens. Other factors include increasing age, history of LASIK or PRK, contact lens wear, certain medications, and certain health conditions. Many autoimmune conditions have Dry Eye as a common side effect.

There is also a lesser known but nearly universal condition in Dry Eye called Meibomian Gland Dysfunction (MGD). The inside of our eyelids are full of Meibomian Glands, and their job is to secrete lubricating oils into our tears. Over time, these glands become blocked and do not function as well. These changes are essentially universal with age, but they can affect younger populations as well.

There is a large spectrum of Dry Eye severity, which also means there is also a wide range of treatment options. For mild Dry Eye, over the counter artificial tears go a long way. Using them regularly and frequently improves how well they work. Simply using drops twice a day can give many patients relief.

For more moderate to severe cases, we can customize treatment options based on your specific case. In-office options include prescription drops, punctal plugs, microwave or electric heat masks and in-office gland treatments. Let us help relieve your Dry Eye today! Contact our office at (303) 833-1056 or by email at info@carbonvalleyeyecare.com for more information on how we can help you.

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