Dry Eye Treatment in Andheri West

What is dry eye?

Normally, the eye constantly bathes itself in tears. By producing tears at a slow and steady rate, the eye stays moist and comfortable. Sometimes people do not produce enough tears or the appropriate quality of tears to keep their eyes healthy and comfortable. This condition is known as dry eye. The eye uses two different methods to produce tears. It can make tears at a slow, steady rate to maintain normal eye lubrication. It can also produce large quantities of tears in response to eye irritation or emotion. When a foreign body or dryness irritates the eye or when a person cries, excessive tearing occurs.

What are the symptoms of dry eye?

The usual symptoms include

  • stinging or burning eyes,
  • scratchiness,
  • stringy mucus in or around the eyes,
  • excessive eye irritation from smoke or wind,
  • excessive tearing, and
  • discomfort when wearing contact lenses.
Dry Eye

Excessive tearing from “dry eye” may sound illogical, but is actually the eye’s response to discomfort. If the tears responsible for maintaining lubrication do not keep the eye wet enough, the eye becomes irritated. Eye irritation prompts the gland that makes tears (called the lacrimal glands) to release a large volume of tears, overwhelming the tear drainage system. These excess tears then overflow from your eye.

What is the tear film?

What Is The Tear Film

When you blink, a film of tears spreads over the eye making the surface of the eye smooth and clear. Without this tear film, good vision would not be possible. The tear film consists of three layers:

The tear film consists of three layers:

  • An oily layer
  • A watery layer
  • A layer of mucus

The oily layer, produced by the meibomian glands, forms the outermost surface of the tear film. Its main purpose is to smoothen the tear surface and reduce evaporation of tears. The middle watery layer makes up most of what we ordinarily think of as tears. This layer, produced by the lacrimal glands in the eyelids, cleans the eye and washes away foreign particles or irritants.

The inner layer consists of mucus produced by the conjunctiva. Mucus allows the watery layer to spread evenly over the surface of the eye and helps the eye remain moist. Without the mucus, tears would not stick to the eye.

What causes dry eye?

Tear production normally decreases as we age. Although dry eye can occur in both men and women at any age, women are most often affected. This is especially true after menopause. Dry eye can also be associated with other problems. For example, people with dry mouth and arthritis are said to have Sjogren’s syndrome. A wide variety of common medications, both prescription and over-the-counter, can cause dry eye by reducing tear secretion. Ensure that you inform your ophthalmologist (eye M.D.) of all the medications you are taking, especially if you are using

  • diuretics for high blood pressure,
  • beta-blockers for heart or high blood pressure,
  • antihistamines for allergies,
  • sleeping pills,
  • medications for “nerves,” or
  • pain relievers.
Causes of Dry Eye

Since these medications are often necessary, the dry eye condition may have to be tolerated or treated with eye drops called artificial tears.

How is dry eye diagnosed?

An ophthalmologist can usually diagnose dry eye by examining the eyes. Sometimes, tests that measure tear production are necessary. One test, called the Schirmer tear test, involves placing filter-paper strips under the lower eye lid to measure the rate of tear production under various conditions. Another test uses diagnostic drops to look for certain patterns of dryness on the surface of the eye.

How is dry eye treated?


Eye drops, called artificial tears, are similar to your own tears. They lubricate the eyes and help maintain moisture. Artificial tears are available without a prescription. There are many brands in the market, so you may want to try several to find the one that suits you best.

Preservative-free eye drops are available for people who are sensitive to the preservatives in artificial tears. If you need to use artificial tears more than every two hours, preservative-free brands are recommended.

You can use the artificial tears as often as necessary-once or twice a day or as often as several times an hour.


Conserving your eye’s own tears is another approach to keeping the eyes moist. Tears drain out of the eye through a small channel into the nose (which is why your nose runs when you cry). Your ophthalmologist may close these channels either temporarily or permanently. Closure conserves your own tears and makes artificial tears last longer.


Tears evaporate like any other liquid. You can take steps to prevent evaporation. In winter, when indoor heating is used, a humidifier or a pan of water kept on the radiator adds moisture to the dry air. Wrap-around glasses may reduce the drying in some states. Some people with dry eye complain of scratchy eyes when they wake up. This symptom can be treated by using an artificial tear ointment or thick eye drops at bedtime. Some people may find relief by supplementing their diets with omega-3 fatty acids, which are found naturally in foods like oily fish (salmon, sardines, and anchovies) and flex seeds. Ask your ophthalmologist if you should incorporate oral supplements of omega-3 fatty acids into your dry eye treatment regimen, and if so, in what form and dosage.

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