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Help for Dry Eyes at Oxford Optometry

Is something is wrong with your eyes, but you're not sure what it might be? That irritation, redness, and vision trouble could be due to dry eye syndrome, a common problem that can cause everything from mild discomfort to worrying eye damage. Fortunately, you can find the relief your dry eyes need here at Oxford Optometry, where we can diagnose your condition and recommend soothing remedies.

Woman with dry eyes needs to visit an optometrist in Woodstock.

Dry Eye Syndrome: Causes and Symptoms

Ideally, your eyes are constantly bathed in a film of tear fluid. This tear film is more complex than you might think, consisting of three distinct layers. A layer of mucin sits directly on the eye, offering protection and serving as a base for a moisturizing layer of water. A layer of oil covers the water, which helps to lock that moisture in and slow the rate of evaporation. If your eyes aren't producing enough tears to maintain the tear film, your eyes will dry out. Even if you are indeed making tears, those tears will disappear rapidly if they don't contain enough oil. Symptoms include itchy, gritty, red, irritated eyes as well as blurry vision. Corneas unprotected by tear film may even suffer from ulceration and other serious problems.

Insufficient tears may be due to age-related hormonal changes, medications, or underlying diseases. They may also be the result of heavy computer use, which discourages normal blinking. Tears prone to evaporation may be caused by meibomian gland dysfunction or windy environments.

We Offer a Variety of Dry Eye Treatments

Oxford Optometry can prescribe the right mix of treatments for your particular case of dry eye syndrome. If we find that clogged meibomian glands are not producing enough oil, we can administer procedures to get that oil flowing again. Nutritional supplements such as fish oil may also help. We may recommend eye drops or gels of varying viscosity to keep your eyes moist during the day or overnight. Environmental adjustments can help protect your eyes from wind, while changes in computer habits can help you work without drying out your eyes. If your symptoms are related to diseases or medications, we will point out the problem and recommend that you talk to your doctor about getting these issues under control.

Suffering From Dry Eyes in Woodstock, ON? Contact Us Today!

Life is too short to spend it suffering from dry eyes. If you're showing the telltale signs of dry eye syndrome, call our Woodstock, ON office at 519-421-3303 to arrange of an evaluation. The sooner we know what's causing your dry eyes, the sooner we can put those irritating symptoms to rest!

Dry Eyes FAQs Answered by Our Woodstock Optometrists

At Oxford Optometry, our main goal is to quickly identify the source of the problem, educate our patients on proper eye care and maintenance, and ultimately, to offer a solid course of treatment that provides effective relief from eye discomfort.

What is Dry Eye Syndrome?

Dry Eye Syndrome, also known as keratoconjunctivitis sicca (KCS), is one of the most common forms of dry eyes and is caused by a lack of sufficient water in the tear glands.

What are the Symptoms?

People who experience problems with severely dry eyes may complain of irritated, itchy eyes, swelling, inflammation, stinging, burning, redness, blurry vision, sensitivity to light and a feeling of grittiness or having debris in the eyes.

What Causes Dry Eye Syndrome?

It is often the result of either an imbalance in the oil, mucous and water-producing glands around the eyelids or a reduction in tear production and drainage, resulting in an inadequate amount of moisture to keep the eyes lubricated properly. The condition may be triggered by such things as smoke exposure, being in a dry or windy climate, aging, wearing contacts for long periods of time or having certain medical conditions such as arthritis or diabetes.

How Do I Get Tested for Dry Eye Syndrome?

If over-the-counter remedies fail to offer relief from your dry eye issues, you may be experiencing Dry Eye Syndrome. If this is the case, you may need a more aggressive form of treatment. Your optometrist can help diagnose your condition by doing a thorough eye exam that may include monitoring your tear flow using special dyes, evaluation of your cornea and studying the structure of your eyelids and the way you blink.

What is the Treatment for My Dry Eye Syndrome?

If your optometrist discovers that you do indeed have Dry Eye Syndrome, he may prescribe special drops that can help increase tear production and soothe irritated eyes. Other treatments may include ointments that can decrease dryness-inducing inflammation or a procedure that blocks tear ducts, helping to conserve your natural tears and keep them in your eyes longer.

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