Our eyes are crucial to our everyday functions. They help us navigate, search, and communicate – they are the lenses through which we perceive and interact with the world. So, what happens when they become compromised? Having dry eyes can feel frustrating, annoying, and inconvenient. The good news is that effective eye care options are out there and can give you the relief you need in a pinch. All you have to do is search.
At Paragon Eye Associates, we make the search easy. We have been providing eye care for the people of Mansfield and Arlington, Texas, for years, and we’re here to help you now. We’ve put together a list of effective eye care options for addressing your condition. If you need more help, schedule a consultation to speak with one of our eye care professionals today.
1. Make Lifestyle Changes
If you struggle with dry eyes, the first thing to do is determine what caused this issue. In this day and age, many of us spend most of our time in front of computer screens. Eye strain due to staring at a screen all day could contribute to your dry eye symptoms. Frequent exposure to wind, smoke, and other environmental irritants can also make eyes itchy and irritated.
Taking more frequent breaks, wearing sunglasses while outdoors, and taking nutritional supplements can all help minimize your symptoms and their occurrence. Getting more sleep could also help decrease the fatigue your eyes incur throughout the day.
2. Over-the-counter Care for Dry Eyes
After making lifestyle changes, one of the first options for addressing dry eyes is seeking an over-the-counter cure. Artificial tears, gels, gel inserts, and ointments can provide you with effective relief from the itch and irritation you’re experiencing. However, one thing that many overlook when it comes to shopping for OTC cures is their primary focus.
Certain eye drops like Visine and Clear Eyes are primarily concerned with clearing up redness. These products contain substances that constrict the blood vessels in your eyes, making them appear whiter. This isn’t necessarily a good thing, especially if you’re struggling with dry eyes. The blood vessel constriction can ultimately rebound, causing more intense redness and irritation than before. Therefore, when searching for OTC dry eye cures, aim for products with little-to-no additives that are mainly formulated to target itch and irritation.
3. Try Prescription Medications
Scouring the aisles for eye drops may not yield effective results, especially if you’re discerning. If you’re feeling stumped or if your condition is severe, it may be time to make an appointment. Here at Paragon Eye Associates, we know exactly what you need to clear up your itch and irritation.
Specific drops such as cyclosporine (Restasis) and lifitegrast (Xiidra) can help increase tear production and improve symptoms dramatically. These medications are stronger than what you will find at the store, though, so they should only be used after an evaluation by a doctor. Another option to consider is getting a prescription for special contacts with a scleral lens, which can keep your eyes hydrated.
4. Surgical and Medical Options for Dry Eyes
Last on the list are invasive steps you can take if dry eyes are a chronic problem. In most cases, treating your eyes with an OTC or prescription medication is enough to clear up symptoms. However, if your dry eyes resist other options, surgery and other medical options may be worth considering.
A procedure to block the tear ducts can be performed to prevent tear drainage. This can help keep your eyes moist for a longer period. This procedure can be done as a temporary or permanent measure (called punctal cauterization). Another alternative is to perform eyelid surgery. In some cases, dry eyes can occur due to loose lower lids. Thus, tightening the skin of your lower eyelids can reduce drainage and help with your symptoms.
Find the Solution for Dry Eyes Today
If you’re fed up with itchy, irritated, and red eyes, our team at Paragon Eye Associates can help. We offer eye care appointments here at our Mansfield and Arlington offices to identify the cause of your concerns and provide the treatment you deserve.