Are your eyes frequently dry and itchy regardless of the season or environmental conditions around you? These may be symptoms of dry eye syndrome, a widespread and treatable condition that has multiple causes.
Dry eye syndrome and having dry eyes can be different things. Extended screen use, contact lenses, allergies, and medical conditions can all trigger dry eyes.
But having dry eyes does not necessarily mean you have dry eye syndrome. The cause of dry eye syndrome is likely an internal one.
It leaves your eyes dry and irritated regardless of external circumstances. Keep reading to learn more about dry eyes and dry eye syndrome and how LipiFlow may help.
What is Dry Eye?
Dry eye syndrome causes dry eyes but is a medical condition. Dry eyes caused by seasonal or environmental conditions are symptoms of external forces.
They tend to come and go, while dry eye syndrome does not. They’re generally treatable with things like eye drops or allergy medicines.
Dry eye syndrome is a chronic condition that is less dependent on the environment. External conditions can worsen it, but its cause is usually internal.
What Causes Dry Eyes?
Some of the more common causes of dry eyes are environmental conditions. Being on an airplane, air blowing in your eyes, and long periods looking at screens can lead to dryness and irritation.
You should understand these causes of dry eyes so that you can combat them. The same is true for dry eye syndrome, although the treatment options differ from externally created dry eyes.
What is Dry Eye Syndrome?
There are a few different reasons dry eye syndrome may develop. The most common cause of dry eye is that there is a problem with your tear production.
When your eyes are dry, they can over or underproduce tears. If your body cannot produce enough tears, your eyes understandably dry out.
But you can also have dry eyes even if you are overproducing tears. This situation is a sign that your tears are of low quality. Healthy tears contain three critical ingredients, water, mucus, and oil.
The water in tears provides hydration and nutrients that your eyes need. Mucus ensures the water gets spread evenly across the surface of your eye.
The oil prevents your tears from evaporating, keeping them on the surface of your eyes. Poor quality tears cannot keep your eyes moist because they lack the oil that prevents evaporation.
This evaporation is how your eyes can overproduce tears yet still be dry. Meibomian gland dysfunction or MGD is likely the cause of low tear quality dry eye syndrome.
How Do You Treat Dry Eyes?
If you have seasonal or environmental dry eyes, a handful of at-home remedies may be all you need. Some of these remedies include:
Drinking more waterPrescription eye dropsArtificial tearsUsing a humidifierEating foods high in omega-3 fatty acids
Depending on the cause of your dry eyes, these quick treatments may be all you need. If, however, you have dry eye syndrome, a more intense treatment may be necessary.
Will LipiFlow Treat Your Dry Eyes?
LipiFlow is the only FDA-approved treatment for MGD. It is the best option to treat dry eye syndrome caused by MGD.
It works by heating and massaging your inner and outer eyelids simultaneously. This process removes blocks in your meibomian glands.
One LipiFlow treatment may be all you need to fix your MGD and end your dry eye syndrome. You can also get it more than once.
The results of LipiFlow take a few weeks to take full effect. So if your symptoms don’t go away immediately, it doesn’t mean the treatment didn’t work.
Would you like to get rid of your dry eyes? Schedule an appointment at Chicago Cornea Consultants™ in Chicago, IL, to determine if LipiFlow can help your dry eyes!