Dry Eye Doctor in Fort Myers
If your eyes have felt dry and scratchy for a prolonged period of time, it is likely that you may have a common condition called dry eye, a condition whereby a person cannot produce enough tears to keep the eyes properly lubricated. If you have dry eye, you’ll need a dry eye doctor, and in Fort Myers, there is no better team than Elmquist Eye Group.
What causes dry eye?
Tears are composed of a fluid that contains water, fatty oils and mucus, all of which mix together to keep the surface of the eye properly moist and free of debris and irritants. Dry eye occurs when a patient has an imbalance in this tear fluid or when the patient has decreased tear production. In either case, the eyes are not sufficiently lubricated and may feel gritty and scratchy.
Most people develop dry eye as they age; the condition is most common in people over age 50 and females in particular. People with diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis and thyroid disorders are more likely to develop dry eye. Certain types of medication like decongestants, antihistamines and blood pressure drugs are also , and hormone replacement therapies are a few examples.
What are the symptoms of dry eye?
Most patients experience grittiness and scratchiness in the eyes, and can also have a burning or stinging sensation and redness. You will likely find it more difficult to wear contacts and may have trouble driving at night. People with dry eye are also more likely to develop eye infections because the tears (the first line of defense) are not adequate to protect the eye.
Age is a significant risk factor, and people over age 50 are much more prone to developing dry eye. Females are at higher risk, as are contact lens wearers. People who lack sufficient dietary intake of omega-3 fatty acids or vitamin A are also at higher risk.
Can I prevent dry eye?
To prevent or minimize dry eye, stay away from direct air sources like air conditioners, fans and heaters that blow directly into the eye and cause the tears to more quickly evaporate. Another tip is to add moisture to dry air. Prevent computer eye fatigue as much as possible by taking breaks several times a day. People who stare at a computer screen all day tend to blink less often. Close your eyes and blink a few times to redistribute your tears.
If you’ve had dry eye for a while, you may have reached the point of experiencing significant discomfort. If this is where you are, it is important to see a dry eye doctor in Fort Myers for remedies. Look no further than our expert, experienced team at Elmquist Eye Group. During your initial visit, we will perform an extensive eye exam and do tests for dry eye. Your condition is uncomfortable but very treatable, so come see us or give us a call today.