Spindel Eye Associates Dry Eye Treatment FAQ

If you need comprehensive dry eye treatment in the Windham or Londonderry, NH areas, Spindel Eye Associates is here to offer solutions you need and deserve. Dry eye syndrome is when someone experiences insufficient moisture and lubrication in the eyes due to a lack of quality tears. This can create everything from inflammation to irritation and can even leave the eye particularly vulnerable to debris or dust entering and causing issues. Dry eye syndrome can range from mild annoyance to scarring and other vision issues. With nearly 30 million people in the United States dealing with dry eye syndrome, Spindel Eye Associates offers a wide variety of dry eye treatment options to help relieve symptoms and help you get back to living your best life.

What causes dry eye?
Your eyes need a few essential components to create tears. These components are a complex mixture of water, fatty oils, and mucus the eye requires to keep it’s smooth and clear surface. Additionally, the eye requires these components to help protect it from various particles and infection. These necessary lubricants need to all be present at the same time, or there will be a lack of sufficient lubrication for your eyes. Common causes of dry eye include:

  • Staring at computer, T.V., or phone screens too often
  • Living in dry or windy climates and environments
  • Gender
  • Flying regularly
  • Smoking
  • Air conditioners, heaters, and fans can dry the eyes
  • Menopause
  • Old age
  • Medication side effects
  • Eye conditions which don’t allow your eyes to close fully
  • Eye diseases such as collagen vascular disease, Sjogren’s syndrome, or rheumatoid arthritis
  • Irritation from contact lenses

What are the symptoms of dry eye?
There are several symptoms of dry eyes. A person can tell if they have dry eye by recognizing the following symptoms:

  • Redness
  • Itching
  • Blurred vision
  • Consistent tearing
  • Eye pain
  • Watery eyes
  • Fluctuation in vision
  • Light sensitivity
  • Gritting feeling on the eyeball
  • Burning
  • Unusual soreness
  • Heavy or fatigued eyelids

If you notice a combination of these symptoms, it’s crucial to reach out to an eye care professional right away. Dry eye can become worse, so it is essential to address the issue before more significant complications occur.

What are the dry eye treatments Spindel Eye Associates offers patients?
The dry eye treatment options we offer at Spindel Eye Associates include:

  • Artificial tears – When your tear ducts do not produce enough tears, supplementing them with over-the-counter or prescriptions, artificial tear solutions can be a quick and easy solution.
  • Tear conservation – Dry eyes may be the result of tears leaving the eyes too soon, so we may recommend wholly or partially closing your tear ducts. This may involve inserting a small, silicone plug into one of the tear drainage ducts or permanently closing the duct with a minor surgical procedure.
  • Prescription medications – Cholinergic can get used to increase tear production, antibiotics can reduce eyelid inflammation, and Restasis will reduce cornea inflammation.
  • Lipiflow – This pain-free procedure uses a disposable eyepiece to apply controlled heat to the inner eyelid. This piece applies gentle, intermittent pressure the outer eyelid, massaging out blockages in the meibomian glands and restoring the naturally flowing oil preventing tear evaporation.
  • Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) Treatment – This treatment process utilizes bursts of light directed at the lower eyelids and upper cheek areas, which heats the blocked eyelid glands. After the light treatment gets performed, we’ll clear out any blockages so the oil in your eye can flow out naturally.

How common is dry eye syndrome?
The need for dry eye treatment is very common; statistically, it is one of the most common reasons people visit the eye doctor. It’s estimated nearly 5 million Americans over the age of 50 suffer from dry eyes. Of these, over 3 million are women, and 1.68 million are men.

How can I help reduce symptoms of dry eye?
There are a few self-care steps you can take to help reduce the symptoms of dry eye on your own. These include:

  • Remembering to blink regularly when staring at a screen for long periods
  • Increase the humidity in the air for added air lubrication
  • Wear sunglasses when outdoors to reduce exposure to dust and debris, as well as sun exposure
  • Incorporating nutritional supplements into your routine containing fatty acids
  • Drinking 8 to 10 glasses of water a day to ensure you do not become dehydrated

Does wearing contact lenses contribute to dry eye?
Yes. Dry eyes are one of the leading reasons people stop wearing contact lenses over time. There are alternative contact lenses solutions to accommodate to dry eye, so be sure to ask about your options when you visit our office.

Why is dry eye treatment necessary?
Dry eye treatment is necessary because eyes not properly lubricated and protected by tear film are incredibly susceptible to eye infections caused by dust, debris, and bacteria. Additionally, chronic dryness can lead to scarring, ulceration or perforation of the corneas, and even loss of vision.

Is dry eye a disease?
Yes. Dry eye is a chronic, progressive disease affecting the surface of the eye. Symptoms may come and go, but eventually, they will create damage to the eye that can become detrimental to a person’s vision. Like any disease, it is vital to address the underlying issues before they progress into something far more severe.

Can I have dry eye if my eyes are constantly watering?
Though it may seem a bit confusing, the answer is yes. Irritated and dry eyes will sometimes work to stimulate the production of tears. This overcompensation might create an overproduction of tears, making them too watery, and actually washing away the healthier part of the tear the eye has been able to produce successfully. If something seems off, reach out to an eye care professional right away.

Why does it feel like there’s something in my eye?
Dry eye can lead to a sense of grittiness within the eye. This issue is known as “foreign body sensation” and can either be a localized discomfort or occur throughout the entire eye. Additionally, dry eye can cause dry spots or small injuries on the cornea, which causes a gritty or painful sensation feeling like there’s something small stuck in your eye.

Find Relief Today Through Dry Eye Treatment!

If you’re a Windham or Londonderry, NH resident and think you would benefit from dry eye treatment, we urge you to schedule an appointment with us for a proper eye examination. You can also give us a call, and one of our doctors would be happy to discuss your potential dry eye issues and what our treatment options entail. At Spindel Eye Associates, we want to get you the help you deserve so you can stop dealing with this chronic and uncomfortable issue once and for all.