Are you rubbing your eyes a lot because they are red and itchy? Don’t wait to get it checked, because you may be suffering from dry eye syndrome. Dry eye is an irritating condition that may be due to several factors. Besides redness and itchiness, what are the most common symptoms of dry eye? Let’s find out.
What is Dry eye?
Dry eye refers to a condition in which the eye does not produce enough tears, and consequently there is limited lubrication.
Dry eye is a result of an imbalance in the tear system that alters the normal composition of tears. Tears not only help to keep the surface of the eye moist, but they also protect the eyes from various types of infections.
Dry eye may also be caused by environmental conditions such as excess heat, wind, or dry air. These conditions can dry out the tear film, which is the outer liquid layer that protects the corneal surface.
Symptoms of dry eye
Dry eye is generally characterized by burning, pain, redness, and irritation of the eye. This is often accompanied by a gritty sensation which feels a lot like there is something in the eye.
Left untreated, dry eye can make it difficult to perform simple tasks that require prolonged visual attention, such as reading and using the computer. In severe cases it can lead to eye inflammation, scars on the cornea, and vision problems.
If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, don’t hesitate to visit an ophthalmologist for a comprehensive examination and accurate diagnosis. Early treatment is the best way to avoid permanent eye damage.
Patients in the greater Washington, DC area can visit New View Eye Center, Reston, VA for treatment of dry eye syndrome. Call (703) 834-9777 to schedule an appointment with ophthalmologist Dr. Jacqueline Griffiths.