Why Early Assessment of Dry Eye Symptoms is Critical to Quality of Life
- Posted on: Mar 30 2019
Dry eye syndrome is a sneaky eye condition that is often overlooked for months or years before a person seeks treatment. According to statistics, approximately one-third of adults in the world are affected by dry eye disease. As suggested by the name, this condition involves an insufficiency in the tear film that covers the eyes. Without an adequate blanket of tears, the surface of the eye becomes inflamed, resulting in pain, irritation, and potential damage to the cornea. To reduce symptoms and avoid unnecessary damage, not to mention discomfort, early treatment is a must.
The Problem with Dry Eye Syndrome
The first challenge with dry eye syndrome is that people often misperceive their symptoms as a normal part of the digital lifestyle we lead today. Digital eye strain can cause similar symptoms to dry eye, but the two conditions are quite different. In order to accurately diagnose dry eye syndrome, an ophthalmologist is likely to conduct a number of tests, such as:
- Tear breakup time, to observe how quickly tears evaporate from the surface of the eye.
- Tear-film osmolarity test, to measure the salt-to-water ratio in tears.
- Schirmer tear test, to measure tear production.
- Corneal fluorescein staining, to detect damage to the cornea.
Dry Eye and Quality of Life
Dry eye syndrome is not taken lightly. Experienced ophthalmologists recognize the mental, physical, and financial effects that may be incurred by untreated eye irritation. When the eyes are chronically and intensely dry, the gritty sensation, burning, and other symptoms that occur may prevent one from performing everyday tasks such as working at a computer. Productivity at work declines for many people with dry eye and, according to one study, has a comparable detrimental effect on quality of life as severe angina (chest pain).
Are you Never Far from Your Eye Drops?
If you use eye drops several times a day to reduce grittiness, redness, and excessive tearing, you may benefit from a thorough examination in our Canfield, North Canton, or Alliance office. Dry eye syndrome can be treated, usually with ease, once the condition is accurately diagnosed.
Contact an office near you for more information on the diagnosis and treatment of dry eye syndrome.
Posted in: Dry Eyes