1 The Promenade, The Quay, Kingsbridge,TQ7 1JD

In memory of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II

Our practices will be closed on Monday 19th September 2022

Dry Eye Care

KINGSBRIDGE EYE CARE GROUP WE CAN GUARANTEE THE BEST POSSIBLE EXPERTISE TO HELP CARE FOR YOUR EYES.

Dry Eyes

Dry eye is a condition in which a person doesn’t have enough quality tears to lubricate and nourish the eye. Tears are necessary for maintaining the health of the front surface of the eye and for providing clear vision.

Typical Symptoms:

  • Itchy or hot, tired eyes
  • Flaky or scaly lids Red eyelids with thickened margins
  • Dry, red or sore eyes. Watery eyes

Why are they sore?

If you don’t produce enough tears or you have poor quality tears, the surface of the eye will become dry and uncomfortable. Several factors can cause this and these frequently occur together so the treatment is often the same. It can be difficult to find permanent relief from the symptoms as the condition is usually on-going

How your tears work:

Your tears are made up of three layers:

  • The watery (aqueous) layer is produced by the lacrimal gland.
  • The greasy (mucous) layer is produced by cells in the conjunctiva and these help the tears run across your eye smoothly. The oily (lipid) layer is produced by glands in your eyelid called Meibomian Glands. These have tiny openings on the eyelid margin. This layer lubricates and floats across the surface of your tears to stop them evaporating too quickly.

Dry Eyes

Dry eyes due to insufficient tears can get worse with age, or environmental factors like air conditioning. They may also be associated with other conditions such as Sjögrens Syndrome / arthritis / thyroid disease.

Blepharitis

This is a common eyelid inflammation with several different causes. Most types need simple regular lid care at home, but severe cases may need further treatment for example, demodex blepharitis.

Meibomian Gland Dysfunction (MGD)

If the meibomian glands in the eyelid are blocked; not functioning properly, or are infected, the tears will evaporate too quickly. You may notice this if your eyes water on a windy day. Nutritional supplements with omega-3 may improve healthy function of the meibomian glands.

Treatments:

Artificial Tears

These supplement your own tears and drain away through your tear duct. We use preservative-free drops whenever possible as preservatives may aggravate your symptoms. You may need thicker drops which last longer. As these make your vision blurry, they are generally used at night time. Different drops are used depending on the severity and underlying problem (see below):

Hot Compress

This will help to open the glands and soften the lipid oils within them. Use a hot compress eg. Eye Bag. Follow heating instructions and then rest over your closed eyes for a minimum of 5 minutes.

Lid massage

This helps to express the oils out of the meibomian glands. Gently but firmly run your (clean) finger along the edge of your lower eyelid and then up towards the margin. Repeat with the top lid.

Lid Hygiene

Use lid wipes or a lid scrub like blephaclean or blephagel to help clean and remove any hard deposits or debris around the eyelid margin and reduce infections.

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