Does it feel like your eyes are constantly dry and irritated? Do you find yourself rubbing your eyes or blinking excessively? If so, you are not alone. According to a 2019 study based right here in Ontario, it is estimated that approximately 6 million Canadian adults suffer from dry eyes.
Are you one of them? Take our quick and easy online dry eye test now!
If you think you may have dry eyes, book an appointment now. The optometrists at Dr. Zargar Eyecare can help alleviate your dry eye symptoms and get your eyes back on track.
Dry eye is an increasingly common condition. Symptoms often include:
Our tears are made up of three main ingredients: mucous, water, and oil. Together, they make up our tear film. If the ingredients in these layers are absent or their ratio is imbalanced, the tear film’s quality is compromised. The result is dry, uncomfortable eyes.
Just as important as the quality of our tears is the volume of tears our eyes produce. If the glands that produce tears are jeopardized or a medical condition or environmental factors hinder our tear production, our eyes do not stay adequately lubricated.
Certain medical conditions can significantly contribute to dry eyes. Things like diabetes and autoimmune disorders, such as arthritis and lupus, can compromise your tear film and causing dry eyes. Similarly, some medications have direct side effects that can adversely affect our eyes’ moisture levels.
Before we can recommend successful treatment options, we will conduct a thorough dry eye assessment to determine the root cause of your dry eye.
From measuring tear production, to assessing how long it takes for your tears to evaporate, to examining your contact lenses and their fit, we use a variety of diagnostic tools and techniques to determine exactly why your eyes are dry and how best to solve the issue.
Artificial tears are eye drops that can be purchased without a prescription. These drops mimic your own natural tears and can be used as needed to help comfort and lubricate your eyes.
In some cases, we may prescribe medicated eye drops to relieve your dry eye. Medicated eye drops help to lubricate the eyes, stimulate tear production and ease redness and inflammation.
In some cases, punctal plugs, small implants placed into the drainage ducts on the upper and lower lids, may be suggested. Punctal plugs work to retain moisture on the surface of the eyes when tears drain from the eye too quickly. These plugs can be easily removed if your eyes begin to retain too many tears.
Using a combination of heat and massage, the LipiFlow® treatment removes blockages from the meibomian glands, allowing natural oils to resume production. If we feel LipiFlow® is the right treatment for you, we will refer you to our partner, Bochner Eye Institute.
There are several ongoing studies that point to omega-3s and antioxidants improving symptoms of dry eye. At Dr. Zagar Eyecare, we offer PRN omega 3 supplements, for relief from dry eye. Additionally, we believe the introduction of more water and fatty foods, such as fish, almonds and leafy green vegetables and quitting adverse lifestyle factors such as smoking, can also help dry eye.