Cliffside Laser Eye and Cataract Center
Richard Levine, MD
Refractive Cataract and LASIK Specialist
Eye dryness is common, bothersome, and sometimes associated with a medical condition in need of treatment. If you’ve been experiencing severe or long-lasting dry eye symptoms, see Richard Levine, MD, for a comprehensive exam. He’s pleased to offer effective diagnostic and treatment options for people in Cliffside Park, New Jersey, at Cliffside Laser Eye and Cataract Center, an accredited Dry Eye Treatment Center. To make an appointment, call the office, or use the convenient online scheduler.
Dry Eyes Q & A
What causes dry eyes?
Perpetual or frequent eye dryness is a common condition that happens when your tears don’t provide enough lubrication. This can result from various factors, including:
- An imbalance in your tear-flow system
- Conditions such as collagen vascular diseases, rheumatoid arthritis, blepharitis, and Sjogren’s syndrome
- Dry eye syndrome
- Exposure to air conditioning or heat
- Hormonal shifts associated with menopause
- Medications such as antihistamines
- Problems that keep your eyelids from closing properly
How are dry eyes diagnosed?
To determine if your symptoms require treatment, Dr. Levine conducts an exam. He measures the degree of dry eye with the TearLab® Osmolarity System. He may also measure your tear volume with the Schirmer’s test, which uses blotting, and test the quality of your tears using special dyes.
How are dry eyes treated?
Treatment for dry eyes depends on factors such as the underlying cause and the severity of your symptoms. Possible treatment options include:
- Artificial tear drops or ointment
- Temporary punctal occlusion, a procedure that closes the duct that drains tears
- A more permanent plug in the duct
- LipiFlow®, a medical device that unclogs blocked eyelid glands using heat and pressure
- Testosterone cream, if the oil glands in your eyelids lack testosterone
- Medical drops such as lifitegrast
- Dietary changes, such as eating more fish or taking omega-3 supplements
While mild dry eye syndrome may be controlled with over-the-counter drops, medical care is essential if you have:
- Blurred vision
- Burning irritation
- Excessive tearing
- Foreign-body or gritty, sand-like sensation
- Persistent itching
Can dry eyes lead to complications?
Dry eyes may cause complications over time, such as:
- Corneal ulcers
- Decreased life quality, due to difficulty reading or sleeping
- Eye infections, because tears help prevent infections on the eye’s surface
- Eye surface damage, due to abrasion or inflammation
- Vision problems
Seeing Dr. Levine for prompt diagnosis and care can minimize these risks.
Can I treat dry eyes on my own?
Sometimes home care, such as over-the-counter drops, can improve eye dryness on its own or paired with medical treatment. If your symptoms are severe or long-lasting, however, see Dr. Levine.