Chronic dry eye symptoms affect more than 16 million people in the United States. At Astorino & Associates Eye Center in Newport Beach, California, Arthur Astorino, MD, and Tram Ho, OD, offer comprehensive diagnostic testing and treatment options to reduce eye discomfort and prevent additional complications. If you have persistently itchy eyes or blurry vision, don’t delay an eye exam. Schedule an appointment online or by calling Astorino & Associates Eye Center today.
Dry eye is a condition that occurs when you can’t produce enough tears to keep your eyes moisturized. You can also develop dry eye if the tears you’re making aren’t good quality.
In healthy eyes, tears are made up of oils, water, and mucus that keep eyes lubricated and protected from environmental irritants and infections. Meibomian glands around your eyes are responsible for making tears.
When these glands dysfunction, you can develop a variety of symptoms associated with dry eye. Additionally, environmental and other factors can contribute to your eye irritation, such as:
As you get older, your risk for dry eye increases due to changes in your ocular and overall health.
Without adequate tears, you likely experience chronic irritation in your eyes. Dry eye can make it feel like you have sand or grit in your eye that never goes away.
Additionally, dry eye can cause symptoms like:
If you are prone to rubbing your eyes because of the chronic irritation, you can also increase your risk of damage to your eyes and infections.
To confirm your symptoms relate to dry eye, Astorino & Associates Eye Center offers in-office testing that evaluates the quantity and quality of your tears.
The Schirmer test is a common procedure that uses small strips of paper that soak up your tears. Other tests help your doctor measure how long it takes your tears to evaporate.
Your doctor also evaluates your overall eye health to determine if you have existing issues that may contribute to dry eye symptoms.
While there is no cure for dry eye, your doctor can provide recommendations to help you manage your condition. Most often, the use of artificial tears can keep your eyes moisturized and free of debris.
In some cases, a procedure to temporarily plug or permanently close the tear drainage areas may be an option for preventing dry eye symptoms. The goal of the procedure is to prevent tears from draining away too quickly.
You may also benefit from wearing contact lenses for people with dry eyes, which help you retain more moisture in your eyes.
If you have chronic eye irritation or need help treating dry eye, schedule an evaluation at Astorino & Associates Eye Center today using the online booking feature or by calling the office.