Dry Eye Syndrome in Delray Beach, FL

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What Is Dry Eye Syndrome?

Most people experience dry eyes from time to time. But when this symptom continues for more than a few days or occurs repeatedly, it may be due to dry eye syndrome. This common condition is the result of insufficient or poor-quality tears and is often caused by certain medications, environmental factors, or underlying health concerns. In other cases, dry eyes result from meibomian gland dysfunction (MGD), which occurs when glands in the eyelids become obstructed, impacting tear production. The experienced ophthalmologists at Rothchild Eye Institute routinely treat dry eye syndrome caused by MGD, often with the revolutionary TearScience® LipiFlow® Thermal Pulsation System. To explore your options for dry eye relief, please contact our Delray Beach, FL practice and schedule a visit with our LipiFlow specialists.

What Are the Benefits Of Having Dry Eyes Treated?

While dry eyes may seem like just an irritation, there are benefits to having dry eye syndrome treated. There is often an underlying cause of dry eye, and if left untreated, you could experience greater issues. When you seek out dry eye treatment, you are reducing complications such as eye infection, inflammation, scarring to the cornea, and even vision loss. Additionally, tears are not only for expressing emotion, but help to wash away germs, dust, and debris, and also lubricate your eyes to protect against scratches. For more information on the benefits of dry tear duct treatment, contact our office to schedule an appointment.

What Are the Risk Factors for Developing Dry Eye?

Several factors can increase the risk of developing dry eye syndrome. Age is a significant factor, as tear production tends to decrease as we get older. Gender also plays a role, as women are more likely than men to experience dry eye, particularly due to hormonal changes from pregnancy, use of oral contraceptives, or menopause. Certain medications, such as antihistamines, decongestants, and antidepressants, can also contribute to dry eye. Environmental factors like smoke, wind, and dry climates can exacerbate symptoms. Individuals who spend a lot of time on digital devices or reading may also be at higher risk due to reduced blink rates. Additionally, certain medical conditions like diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, and thyroid disorders can increase the likelihood of developing dry eye.

What are the symptoms of Dry Eye Syndrome?

Dry eye syndrome symptoms can vary from patient to patient. However, a few common symptoms may indicate you are suffering from dry eye syndrome. These symptoms can include the following:

  • Itchy eyes
  • Impaired vision
  • Bloodshot eyes
  • Feeling of sand in the eyes
  • Sensitivity to light
  • The sensation of swollen eyes
  • Eyes feeling achy or painful

If you have additional questions or concerns about whether you have dry eye syndrome, please reach out to our team so we can address the issue and improve your vision.

What Are the Causes of Dry Eye Syndrome?

Dry eye syndrome can be caused by various factors, contributing to discomfort and irritation. Understanding the causes is crucial for effective diagnosis and treatment. Reasons for dry eye syndrome include:

  • Certain medical conditions
  • The use of specific medications
  • Genetics
  • The natural aging process

A comprehensive consultation at Rothchild Eye Institute allows our team to accurately diagnose dry eye syndrome and its causes. Through a patient-first approach, your ophthalmologist will develop targeted treatments to alleviate symptoms.

How Is Dry Eye Syndrome Treated?

Human tears are fundamental to the overall health of the eyes. When adequate lubrication in the eye is not present, it can cause eye discomfort, redness, itchiness, or impaired eyesight. Your personalized dry eye treatment will be based on the underlying problem behind your unique condition. Following a comprehensive exam, our ophthalmologists can tell you which treatment will be most effective for your specific needs. Dry eye treatments might include:

  • Prescription or nonprescription eye drops to supplement natural tears
  • Punctal plugs placed in your tear ducts to prevent the loss of tears
  • Eye surgery to remove glandular obstructions or address other ocular concerns
  • LipiFlow to unblock meibomian glands and increase the production of lubrication oils

What Can I Expect With LipiFlow?

LipiFlow at Rothchild Eye Institute offers a cutting-edge approach to treating chronic dry eye syndrome caused by meibomian gland dysfunction. To perform this procedure, our LipiFlow specialists will first numb your eyes with anesthetic drops. A pair of disk-shaped, domelike devices will be positioned over your eyes and the system will be activated. During this 12-minute treatment, a combination of pulsating heat and pressure massage will be delivered to the eyelids, clearing blockages from within the glandular ducts. You will then be free to leave and go about your normal activities. While you may notice some improvement in eye lubrication right after your LipiFlow treatment, it may take 6 – 8 weeks to experience optimal effects.

Dry Eye Syndrome FAQ

Can dry eye syndrome cause permanent damage?
If dry eyes are not properly treated, corneal scratches can occur. Over time, these scratches can lead to scarring, which may affect your vision. This is why it is important to seek medical treatment if you are suffering from dry eye syndrome.

What can worsen dry eyes?
Specific factors can make dry eyes worse, including the use of specific medications, such as antihistamines. Additionally, contact lens wearers, smokers, and individuals who have long periods of screen time may be more susceptible to dry eyes. During a consultation at our facility, our eye care professionals can provide information on what to avoid in order to not make dry eyes worse over time.

Can environmental conditions affect dry eye syndrome?
Yes, environmental factors can significantly influence the severity of dry eye symptoms. Dry, windy, or smoky conditions can exacerbate dry eye, as can exposure to air conditioning or heating, which reduces indoor humidity.

Relieve Dry Eye Symptoms Today

Living with chronic dry eye syndrome can not only cause discomfort, but it can also lead to vision impairment if not treated properly. If you have dry eyes lasting more than a few days, it may be time to schedule an eye exam at our Delray Beach, FL facility. The ophthalmologists at Rothchild Eye Institute are experts at treating and managing the various effects of dry eye syndrome. Talk with our team today to learn more about the insurance plans and financing options we accept.

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