Dry Eye Syndrome and Treatment in West Orange, NJ
Your tears comfort your eyes in many ways. Water moisturizes; an outer layer of oils lubricates and prevents evaporation; and proteins help protect against infection. Dry eye strikes when your eyes can’t produce enough tears for lubrication or the moisture in your tears evaporates too quickly.
Our very own Dr. Alan Schlussel is the founding director of The Dry Eye Treatment Center of New York and New Jersey. He will provide you with excellent care and treat your dry eye syndrome.
The Latest In Dry Eye Care:
What Is Dry Eye?
Dry eye syndrome is a chronic eye condition that is characterized by dry eyes and other symptoms including:
- Itchy eyes
- A gritty sensation
- Sensation of a foreign body in the eye
- Crusty eye lids
- Blurred vision
Does Dry Eye Affect Many People?
Dry Eye is a very common condition which we treat in our practice. Some recent research by Harris Interactive indicates that about 70% of people with dry eye don’t ever see an eye care professional. That is somewhat disturbing because a lot of patients could be helped by dry eye treatments. There are a number of treatments out there, and you can read about them here below.
In the Harris Interactive study, mentioned above, the researchers found that nearly half of all Americans experience one or more dry eye symptoms regularly. That’s pretty amazing.
Dry Eye Statistics
It used to be thought that dry eye were more prevalent in women, but now we find men suffer from dry eye nearly as often. Fifty-two percent of women find they experience dry eyes on a regular basis while 43% of men are affected by more than one dry eye symptom.
It’s been known that contact lens wearers are more prone to dry eye syndrome. Those who wear contacts are almost 10 times as likely to experience dry eyes as those with perfect vision, and more than 5 times as likely as those that wear glasses.
Nearly 1/5 or 20% report using over the counter eye drops to treat symptoms at least 5 times a week. The majority of those who use drops to manage dry eye symptoms said that they are only somewhat successful. Almost 59 percent of adults said that they have not been to a professional for help managing dry eyes.
Dry eye syndrome seems to have become more common in recent years. Perhaps with the advent of technology iPhones and other mobile devices, more people are squinting down at small print. More people than ever before are spending more time in front of computer screens, or involved in other activities that promote staring. When you stare, you blink less frequently, and this contributes to dry eyes.
- Train yourself to blink more often while using a computer.
- Take a break every 20 minutes from focusing on small text.
- Set limits to the length of time your are staring at small screens.
Dry Eyes and Contacts
Contact lenses are great for correcting vision, and are becoming more popular even for young patients. However, wearing contact lenses can cause dry eye, especially if they are worn for too long or if you don’t take care of them properly. Some brands are better than others, and wearing glasses seems to decrease the risk of dry eyes even more.
Furthermore the general population is aging, and the chances of developing dry eye symptoms increase with age. Using medication, climate, and hormonal changes are other things that could cause and contribute to dry eyes.