Increased screen time, excessive dependence on electronic devices and spending more time on digital media can increase the incidence of dry eye disease (DED).
  • Symptoms of DED are burning sensation, blurred vision, sensitivity to light, watery eyes; mostly people ignore dry eye disease and do not use proper eye protection. Usually these patients suffer from various eye diseases if left untreated.
  • Finding the right eye drops that work for you and trying different things to help you manage your dry eye symptoms can take some time and dedication. Although there is no cure for dry eye, most people learn how to manage dry eye so that it does not have too much of an impact on their daily life.
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    Facing 'Dry Eyes'? Here's how to know and how to treat

    • Increased screen time, excessive dependence on electronic devices and spending more time on digital media can increase the incidence of dry eye disease (DED).
    • Symptoms of DED are burning sensation, blurred vision, sensitivity to light, watery eyes; mostly people ignore dry eye disease and do not use proper eye protection. Usually these patients suffer from various eye diseases if left untreated.
    • Finding the right eye drops that work for you and trying different things to help you manage your dry eye symptoms can take some time and dedication. Although there is no cure for dry eye, most people learn how to manage dry eye so that it does not have too much of an impact on their daily life.

    25 Oct 2022

    Increased screen time, excessive dependence on electronic devices and spending more time on digital media can increase the incidence of dry eye disease (DED). Once the ocular surface present in our eyes is disrupted by dry eye disease, it poses a risk to people's eye health and makes them vulnerable to secondary infections such as corneal ulcers, conjunctivitis, and other eye-related problems.Dry eye can make your eye feel uncomfortable, red, scratchy and irritated.

    Symptoms of DED are burning sensation, blurred vision, sensitivity to light, watery eyes; mostly people ignore dry eye disease and do not use proper eye protection. Usually these patients suffer from various eye diseases if left untreated. In some cases, this condition can lead to inflammation of the eye.Despite the name, dry eye can also have watery eyes. Dry eye usually does not cause a permanent change in your vision. It can cause your vision to be blurry for a short time, but the blur will go away or improve when you blink.

    There are different types of dry eye, such as moderate, mild and severe. The reason for DED is working from home, online courses, social media, habits of young people such as exposure to electronic devices at night. Most people work in a digital mode with an increased reliance on the use of computers, phones and tablets, which has caused an almost 50% increase in cases of dry eye over the past few years.Other reasons for DED are certain medical conditions such as thyroid disorders, vitamin A deficiency, and diabetes.

    Dry eye disease is a condition in which tears cannot provide sufficient lubrication to the eyes, either due to insufficient production or poor retention in the eyes. Individuals with this condition often report a burning sensation when working on electronic devices for long periods of time, difficulty keeping their eyes open with grit, and a foreign body sensation. People should see an ophthalmologist and get treatment to avoid secondary infections and other complications.

    Dry eye treatment:

    There is no cure for dry eye, but there are treatments that can help your eyes feel more comfortable and keep your symptoms at bay.

     There are three main ways to help dry eye:

    • Make the most of your natural tears

    • Using artificial tears (eye drops)

    • Reduction of tear flow

    Make the most out of your natural tears: There are things you can do yourself that can help reduce the symptoms of dry eye. High temperatures and central heating can cause tears to evaporate more quickly, so sometimes lowering temperatures can help. Another option would be to use a humidifier (a small machine that helps get water into the air) which can help slow the evaporation of your tears and keep your eyes comfortable.

     

    Using artificial tears (eye drops): Most people with dry eye need to use some form of eye drops, also known as artificial tears. The eye drops aim to supplement and replace your natural tears and help keep the surface of your eyes lubricated. This can make the eyes feel more comfortable. They can also prevent any damage to the front of the eye that can occur if the eye is dry for a long time.

    You should use the eye drops as directed. If you have to use the drops more than four times a day, you should tell your ophthalmologist or optometrist, as you may need a different type of drops or other treatment than the drops you are using.

    Reducing tear flow: Dry eye can be helped by plugging the drainage holes, called puncta, in your eyelids. Stopping tear flow can help your tears stay in your eye longer. The medical term for blocked tear ducts is “punctal occlusion”.

    Usually, punctal occlusion is tried for a period of time to see if it helps. Small drainage channels are blocked by small devices called plugs. If this helps with your dry eye symptoms, then the plugs are left in place. Occasionally, permanent minor surgery may also be performed if a temporary block has been helpful.

    Plugs or blockages in the ducts often help reduce the number of drops you need to put in your eyes each day. If your tear ducts are blocked, you may need to use drops, gels or ointments to protect your eyes and keep them as comfortable as possible.

    Newer treatments:

    Newer treatments are offered in private dry eye clinics. Some of these include glasses/goggles with a moisture chamber that can help your eyes retain moisture. There are special over-the-counter sprays that help reduce evaporation and soothe the eyes. Another is the Lipiflow system, which is a device that adapts to your eye and directs heat and gentle massage to the eyelids. Another possible treatment option includes intense pulsed light (IPL), which requires several treatment sessions in the form of pulses of light applied to the eyelids. glands around the eyes to help unblock and clear the Meibomian glands. These treatments are usually available from private optometrists who specialize in dry eye. For some people with dry eye, multiple treatments may be required to manage their dry eye condition, and your eye care professional would need to adjust your treatment based on your individual circumstances. New treatments are constantly being researched to help with dry eye symptoms.

    More tips:

    • Use prescribed eye drops regularly. Finding eye drops that work for you can make a huge difference.

    • Customize your environment. Lowering the temperature and using a humidifier can help, as central heating and air conditioning can make your symptoms worse.

    • Avoid dusty, windy and smoky areas or wear protective glasses if exposed to these environments.

    • Take breaks and remember to blink often when using the computer, watching TV and reading.

    • Try to have a healthy balanced diet with flaxseed and foods containing omega 3 and 6 such as oily fish, nuts, seeds, eggs, green leafy vegetables etc.

    • Do not use eye makeup if there is an infection or inflammation or if your eyes are sore.

    • If you wear contact lenses, keep regular eye exams. If you have dry eyes, you may need to take a break from wearing contact lenses, or research different types of lenses that may be better for dry eye.

    Finding the right eye drops that work for you and trying different things to help you manage your dry eye symptoms can take some time and dedication. Although there is no cure for dry eye, most people learn how to manage dry eye so that it does not have too much of an impact on their daily life.


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