YOU MAY HAVE
The human eye is lubricated by two kinds of tears produced by glands in the upper and lower eyelid.
Constant Tears are continously formed to lubricate the eye and contain natural antibiotics to help fight infections. When constant tear flow is reduced, there is irritation that can cause excessive reflex tearing ("watery eyes"). These excess tears lack the oil needed to keep from evaporating and do not lubricate the eye.
Reflex Tears are produced only in response to irritation, infury or emotion. They help rinse the surface of the eye.
A lack of tears, improper lubrication, or tears draining too quickly from the eye result in a condition known as Dry Eye. Dry eye is a common problem that is easily diagnosed.
Tears can be replaced by using eye drops called Artificial Tears. They replace the moisture that is missing and lubricate the eyes. They temporarily soothe Dry Eye symptoms.
Artificial Tears and medications have provided a quick, short term solution to Dry Eye. However, another option is tear duct closure ("Punctal Occlusion") which allows you to retain your own natural tears.
Temporary closure of the tear duct (punctal canal) is accomplised by inserting a tiny punctum plug (like a sink stopper) to prevent tear drainage.
This allows your own tears to bathe your eye for a longer period of time. In about one week this plug will dissolved and wash away with your tears.
Long term closure of the tear drainage ducts involves the use of a non-dissolvable, yet removable, plug to seal the tear duct. This non-surgical procedure is painless and takes only a few minutes by Dr. Tran.
A lack of tears, improper, or tears draining too quickly from the eye result in a common condition known as Dry Eye.
As we age, tear production decreases. Men and women of any age can be affected, however, after menopause and during pregnancy women are especially for susceptible.
Wearing contact lenses often increase tear evaporation that can result in irritation, increased protein deposits, infection and pain. Dry eye has been shown to be the leading cause of contact lens discomfort.
Exposure to various environments can reduce eye lubrication. These include sunny, dry or windy conditions; heaters, dehumidifiers, fans or air conditioning; sand, dust or pollen, smoke, high altitudes; work environment and prolonged computer use.
A variety of medications reduce tear secretion. Some common examples are decongestants, antihistamines, sleeping pills, beta-blockers, anti-depressants, diuretics, pain relievers and alcohol.
Auto Immune Disease accomapnied by a dry mouth and dry eye is called Sjogren's Syndrome.
Surgical procedures can disrupt the production of tears or the balance between Constant and Reflex tears. Post-surgical dry eye is almost always temporary.