Dry Eyes

Diagnosing Dry Eyes: Diminished Tearing.

Dry eyes, also known by the medical term Keratoconjunctivitis sicca, is an affliction of the eye caused by aridity. This dryness can be produced by either diminished tear production or escalated tear film evaporation. At Levin Eyecare, we treat patients for dry eyes.

Tears are comprised of a mixture of water, oils, mucus, antibodies, and unique proteins. Eyes require a continual flow of tears to furnish continual moisture and lubrication, which assist in maintaining sight and comfort. If a disparity arises, an individual may suffer from dry eyes.

When tears fail to sufficiently moisturize the eye, an individual may encounter pain, acute light sensitivity, and a sensation of grit or sand in the eye. Itching, redness, and a blurring of vision can also accompany dry eyes.

There is a demonstrable correlation between age and decreased tearing. In particular, postmenopausal women often experience dry eyes. Certain drugs – such as oral contraceptives, diuretics, sedatives, beta-blockers, and tricyclic antidepressants can also cause dry eyes.

Treating Dry Eyes: Slit Lamp Diagnosis and Recommendations

Many individuals, approximately fifty percent, who wear contact lenses experience dry eyes. It has been demonstrated that contact lens utilization harms corneal nerve sensitivity; therefore, lacrimal gland tear production diminishes, which results in dry eyes. Both soft contact lenses and rigid gas permeable contact lenses appear to have a negative effect on corneal nerve sensitivity.

Individuals who have undergone refractive surgeries such as LASIK can experience dry eyes. Refractive surgeries involve a cutting of corneal nerves, which spur tear production, thus resulting in dry eyes. Usually dry eyes clear up after a few months, but in a few rare instances, dry eyes can be a permanent affliction.

Using a slit lamp, Levin Eyecare specialists can diagnose dry eyes and make a recommendation for treatment.