July Is Dry Eye Disease Awareness Month!
The Black Hills Regional Eye Institute Now has a dedicated Dry Eye Center. Ask how we can help you today.
Dry eye disease is one of the most common ocular problems affecting the general population today. In fact, more than 40 million people in the USA suffer from the sometimes debilitating problem. Additionally, less than 5% of the dry eye disease patient population has been properly diagnosed and treated, according to HealthCare Maintenance Organizations data.
What is Dry Eye?
Dry eye is a condition that affects millions of people every day. Dry eye syndrome is the eye’s inability to lubricate and tear correctly. Oddly enough, some people who have dry eye syndrome actually tear excessively. This occurs most commonly due to a condition called Evaporative Dry Eye where the water in your tears evaporates faster than normal, due to an insufficient lipid (oil) layer on the tear film of your eye.
What are the causes of Dry Eye?
It is often a normal part of the aging process, particularly in women. Women often experience dry eye syndrome during and after menopause, due to a decrease in female hormone levels. Other causes include exposure to environmental conditions, injuries to the eye, certain medications, or general heath problems. For example, people with arthritis and diabetes are more prone to dry eye. Some other specific causes of dry eye include:
- Indoor heating and air conditioning
- Computer Screens
- High altitudes
- Eye surgery
- Dry Air
How do I know if I have Dry Eye? Some symptoms of dry eye include
- Tired eyes
- Computer Fatigue
- Excessive tearing
- Sensitivity to light
- Mucus secretion
- Blurry vision corrected with blinking