UNDERSTANDING DRY EYE DISEASE
Based on the results of our evaluation, you have been diagnosed with Dry Eye Disease (DED). DED is a chronic, inflammatory, and sometimes progressive condition that affects at least 30 million people in the U.S, many not yet diagnosed. DED is not considered normal aging, but rather is often associated with factors that include poor function of the eyelid oil glands, overgrowth of eyelid bacteria, allergies, nutritional deficiencies, rosacea, hormonal imbalance, use of oral and topical medications, presence of certain systemic diseases, and the chronic use of digital devices. Interestingly, some patients have obvious symptoms (listed below) while others do not.
This condition is best treated early since it may be more difficult to control as it advances, and when severe, has the potential to affect quality of life. Even when treated successfully, however, it is common for those affected to experience an occasional flareup. Such flareups occur with other chronic inflammatory conditions as well, such as with painful arthritis previously brought under control with medical treatment. Despite maintenance of that treatment, flareups requiring additional short-term anti-inflammatory therapy to reestablish control do occur. A similar pattern can be seen in some cases of DED due to its inflammatory nature, but help is available when this occurs. It is important to realize that flareups of Dry Eye Disease can cause any of the following:
1) Vision Changes: You may notice blurry or fluctuating vision, with or without excessive tearing. In some cases, this will be triggered by prolonged use of digital devices.
2) Eye Redness or Swelling: Flareups in DED may be associated with a change in the appearance of your eyes. Many patients notice this early or late in the day.
3) Increase in Discomfort: An increase in awareness of dryness, burning, grittiness, or light sensitivity can indicate a flareup of DED.
Some patients may notice an urge to use eyedrops or other therapies more frequently. If you develop any of these symptoms, continue with your current regimen and give our office a call promptly so that we may set up a consultation or a visit with the Doctor.
Call or text us at Allisonville Eye Care Center at 317-577-0707 to schedule your dry eye evaluation!