Dry eye occurs when your eyes are insufficiently moisturized, either because they do not produce enough tears or because the tears have an improper chemical composition. It often occurs during the natural aging process, but can also form as a result of eyelid or blinking problems, certain medications (antihistamines, oral contraceptives, antidepressants), climate (low humidity, wind, dust), injury, and various health problems (arthritis, Sjogren’s syndrome). In addition to being uncomfortable, dry eye can damage eye tissue, scar the cornea and impair vision.
Irritated, scratchy, dry, uncomfortable or red eyes
A burning sensation or feeling of something foreign in your eyes
How is dry eye treated?
Dry eye is not preventable, but it can be controlled before harm is done to your eyes. Treatment for dry eye includes blinking exercises, increasing humidity at home or work, and use of artificial tears or moisturizing ointment. If these methods fail, surgical options include inserting small plugs in the corners of the eyes to limit tear drainage, or closing drainage tubes in the eyes.