If you have red, irritated, watery eyes, you might have dry eyes, an uncomfortable eye condition that occurs when you don’t produce enough high-quality tears. At Clewner & Kelly Eye Center in Boca Raton, Florida, Lawrence Clewner, MD, and William Kelly, MD, diagnose dry eyes and provide personalized treatments to relieve your symptoms and restore your eye health. Call the practice or make an appointment online today.
Your body produces tears to keep your eyes clean and moisturized. When you don’t produce enough high-quality tears, you develop dry eyes.
Your tears have three layers that perform different functions. The oily outer layer keeps your tears smooth and prevents them from evaporating too quickly. The watery middle layer cleans your eyes, washing away dust and other debris. The inner layer is mucus, which helps your tears spread over your eyes, keeping them moist.
If any layer of your tears is insufficient, you can develop dry eye symptoms, including itching, burning, and gritty sensations. Your vision might also become blurry, and you might develop strings of mucus around your eyes.
Many conditions and risk factors contribute to dry eyes. For example, having eye surgery like LASIK can increase your chances of developing dry eyes. You could also develop dry eyes if you spend too many hours staring at a computer screen or wearing contact lenses.
Medical conditions like rheumatoid arthritis, thyroid disease, and lupus can also cause dry eyes. Your condition could also be linked to medications such as diuretics, decongestants, or antidepressants.
The team at Clewner & Kelly Eye Center check for signs of dry eyes during your annual eye exam. If your eyes are red, irritated, or swollen, they perform additional testing to evaluate the quality and quantity of your tears.
Treatment for dry eyes typically involves adding or retaining tears. The team at Clewner & Kelly Eye Center create customized treatment plans following your diagnosis.
If your symptoms are mild, your ophthalmologist might recommend artificial tears. You can usually buy over-the-counter eye drops, although your eye doctor can prescribe artificial tears if needed.
Your ophthalmologist might also recommend placing punctal plugs in your tear ducts. This simple procedure helps keep your tears on your eyes longer. Depending on your needs, you can have temporary or permanent punctal plugs to help your eye retain tears.
You might also find that applying a warm compress to your eyes or gently massaging your eyelids relieves your symptoms.
You don’t have to put up with uncomfortable dry eye symptoms. Call Clewner & Kelly Eye Center or make an appointment online today for expert dry eye treatment.