Eye Exams - Dry Eye Syndrome

Dry eyes occur when your eyes don’t produce enough tears or when the tears don’t have the proper composition to cover the eye properly.

Each time you blink, a tear film covers the eye to help you see. The tear film has three layers: an oily layer on the outside, a watery layer in the middle and mucous layer on the surface of the eye. (Courtesy of American Academy of Ophthalmology).

If left untreated, dry eyes can not only cause discomfort but possibly damage the corneal tissue and result in permanent vision loss. There are a multitude of causes including medications, hormonal changes, general health problems and environment. Your eye-bar optometrist will discuss your symptoms and help you work towards a solution for your dry eyes.

Symptoms include:

  • Stinging, scratchy and uncomfortable eyes

  • Fluctuating vision

  • A burning feeling or the feeling that something is in your eye.

4-Steps to Treating Dry Eye

  1. Warm compresses and lid wipes. Your eye-bar optometrist may recommend that you warm the eyelids with a warm compress for 5 minutes and then cleanse the eyelid margins with a clean lid wipe such as Blephaclean or Systane Lid Wipes. Debris and crusting on the eyelids causes itching and prevents the tear glands from being able to flow properly

  2. Apply artificial tears. Apply high quality artificial tears such as Hyabak, Thealoz Duo, Systane Hydrate or iDrop Pur. The proper artificial tear can protect, regenerate and lubricate the eyes. Non-preserved artificial tears can be used up to 6 times per day as needed to relieve dry eye symptoms. Eye-bar Optometry carries a wide range of high quality artificial tears and our optometrists can recommend something that will work for you.

  3. Use Omega-3 Supplements. A high potency Omega-3 supplement (up to 3000 mg daily dosage) is clinically proven to improve Dry Eye symptoms.

  4. Ask your eye-bar optometrist to prescribe Restasis or Xiidra eye drops (see how to use Xiidra here) which can increase the production of your own tears after only a few weeks of use.