Dry eyes occur when your body does not produce enough tears to keep your eyes lubricated sufficiently. Having dry eyes is usually not a dangerous condition, but it can be bothersome and uncomfortable. It can also have a temporarily negative impact on your vision. At Dr. Shipley & Associates, one of our many services that we provide to you, our valued patient, is to properly diagnose and treat dry eyes. When you’re having any problems with your eyes, call us and schedule a checkup done by our Healdsburg optometrist.
There are some symptoms that can indicate the presence of dry eyes and it’s good to be aware of them. Among the signs are a burning or stinging sensation in your eyes, reddening of the eyes, tired eyes, sensitivity to light, and blurred vision, especially if you read a lot or spend a great deal of time in front of a monitor. If you wear contact lenses, dry eyes can also be the result of discomfort from them. Other risk factors include exposure to smoke or wind. As part of your examination, our Healdsburg optometrist will do a thorough eye checkup and perform diagnostic tests such as measuring the volume of your tears by putting blotting strips of paper beneath your lower eyelids. The quality of your tears is gauged with specially dyed eye drops. Additional tests may be done if necessary so that a definitive diagnosis can be arrived at.
When treating dry eyes, the most common method is to apply artificial tears. An over-the-counter will sometimes do just fine, but depending on the severity of your condition and the judgment of our Healdsburg optometrist, a prescription strength version may be the better option. There are also lifestyle adjustments that can be very helpful in managing dry eyes and providing you relief from the effects of it. Avoid cigarette smoke, your own and that of others. Wind and air-conditioning are also known to contribute to dry eyes. You may want to consider a humidifier for your home to add needed moisture to the air. Surgery is a last resort, only an option in cases where all other non-invasive solutions have proved unsuccessful.