What is dry eye?

Dry eyes is a common condition affecting up to 30% of the population.  It results from a breakdown in the natural layer of tears that coat the eye and becomes more noticeable as we age.

Common symptoms of dry are:

  • Excessive tearing or watery eyes
  • Burning, stinging or irritated eyes
  • Scratchy or foreign body sensation
  • Frequent blinking
  • Eye redness
  • Blurry or fluctuating vision (particularly noticeable when reading, using a computer, watching television or driving)
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Eye fatigue
  • Reduced tolerance to wearing contact lenses
Dry eye treatment and management

There are a number of treatments for dry eye which range from simple home treatments to more advanced treatments carried out by our optometrists.

Home Treatments

  • Drops and ointments to alleviate the symptoms such as ‘artificial tears’
  • Heating eye compress masks
  • Dietary supplements such as Omega 3, flaxseed or fish oil supplements which may assist in reducing inflammation

Meibomian Gland Therapy

This therapy involves re-activating the glands in your lower eyelid if they have become blocked.  It is conducted by the optometrist using special instruments.

Intense Pulse Light (IPL) Therapy

This therapy is applied with a specialised equipment (Lumenis M22 machine) by the optometrist.  It is a drug free, drop free, light based treatment that targets chronic inflammation that is the root cause of dry eye syndrome.

 

Dry eye assessment and diagnosis

Before treatment for dry eyes, our optometrists will perform a dry eye screening assessment. The dry eye assessment will involve an investigation of the key indicators of dry eye syndrome such as tear film stability, signs of ocular inflammation, and functionality of the meibomian glands. The assessment will be performed with specialised equipment in accordance with regulated scientific protocols.

The results of the dry eye screening assessment will be discussed with you before commencing treatment.  In the majority of cases, you will be able to see visual images of your meibomian glands and determine the extent to which your glands are active or dormant. In other words, you will understand the cause of your dry eye problem.