Dry eye is a common condition that affects people of all ages but is more common in women, older adults, and people who live in dry or windy climates. It is estimated that dry eye affects between five and 33 percent of the general population.
Dry eye occurs when the quality or the quantity of the eyes tears is affected. Tears are essential in maintaining the health of the eye's front surface and providing clear vision. When the eyes are not properly lubricated, they can feel dry, scratchy, and uncomfortable.
Mites, also known as Demodex, are tiny insects that live on humans' and animals' skin and hair follicles. They are usually harmless and are found on the face, including the eyelashes. In some cases, an overgrowth of mites on the eyelashes, demodicosis, may contribute to the development of dry eye.
Demodicosis can cause inflammation of the eyelids, which can lead to the production of fewer or poorer-quality tears. The mites may also directly damage the eye's surface, leading to dry eye symptoms.
Keep your face clean, especially around the eyes. Gently clean your eyelids with mild soap and warm water once or twice daily. Avoid sharing makeup and makeup brushes, as these can harbor mites.
Rubbing your eyes can irritate the eyelids and increase the risk of demodicosis.
Certain medications can cause dry eye syndrome by decreasing tears' production or altering the tears' composition. It can lead to dry, uncomfortable eyes and impaired vision. Medications that are known to cause dry eye syndrome include:
If you are taking a medication and experiencing dry eye symptoms, it is important to discuss this with your healthcare provider. They can recommend treatment options or adjust your medication regimen to help alleviate your symptoms.
Prolonged screen time can contribute to dry eye syndrome. When we look at screens, we tend to blink less frequently, which can lead to dryness of the eyes. The blue light emitted by screens can also contribute to dry eye by reducing the production of tears.
Other factors contributing to dry eye during screen time include poor lighting, dry indoor air, and poor posture.
For more on the causes of dry eye syndrome and how to avoid them, visit Advanced Eyecare Center at our office in Perry, Georgia. Call (478) 412-4200 to book an appointment today.