Dry eye is a relatively common condition that can cause infection and corneal damage if left untreated. Dr. Cohen and his team provide patients in the New York-New Jersey metropolitan area with advanced care for dry eyes so patients can reduce or eliminate painful, irritating symptoms.
What symptoms are caused by dry eye?
Dry eye can cause an array of irritating and sometimes painful symptoms in the eye, including:
itching, burning or stinging sensations
foreign body sensation
feelings of grittiness or scratchiness
excessive tearing or thick discharge from the eyes
irritation when wearing contacts
increased sensitivity to irritants like pollutants
In most cases, symptoms occur in both eyes.
What causes dry eye?
Dry eye can develop as a result of disease or lifestyle factors. Some of the most common causes include:
autoimmune disorders including Sjogren's syndrome and Graves' disease
long-term use of allergy medications, anti-depressants, high blood pressure medicines, acne medicines, decongestants and hormone replacement therapy products
lifestyle issues like exposure to smoke, fumes or other pollutants, or occupations that require prolonged, intense focus or long periods of staring at a computer monitor
How can dry eye be treated?
Management of dry eye is often an ongoing process. In some cases where lifestyle or environmental factors are at play, symptoms can be relieved or even eliminated with a few changes in habits, such as wearing protective eyewear when exposed to fumes or pollutants, or taking frequent breaks when using a computer or performing other tasks that require deep focus. In other cases, prescription eye drops, special contact lenses or implants, oral medications or surgery may be required for long-term relief
Can't I just use over-the-counter drops from my drugstore to treat dry eye?
While some symptoms of dry eye may be alleviated with over-the-counter products, when used long term, many products can cause dry eye symptoms to become worse. What's more, dry eye can be a symptom of another disorder and it can also cause damage to the surface of your eye which can result in infection or vision loss if not treated by a doctor.