When it comes to dry eye disorder (DED), there are a lot of misconceptions out there.
Dry eye affects between 20-50% of adults globally: Its widespread presence leads many to believe that it is not a serious problem and that symptoms may be dismissed or attributed to other temporary conditions.
However, just because many live with dry eye disease, it does not mean that it should be taken lightly. For the millions of people who suffer from this condition, it is important to be able to distinguish fact from fiction for the sake of their ocular health.
Today, we’re here to set the record straight and clear up some common misunderstandings about chronic dry eye.
Myth: Dry eyes are just a symptom of allergies.
Fact: While allergies can be a possible cause for dry eye symptoms, chronic dry eye disorder is caused by your body’s inability to produce the appropriate quantity or quality of tears.
This can be caused by several factors, not just allergies.
Other possible causes for dry eye symptoms include:
- skin conditions
- autoimmune disorders
- use of contact lenses, etc.
These conditions and circumstances can affect not only your tear ducts but also the meibomian glands in the eyelids.
These glands are responsible for secreting an oil called meibum which helps to hydrate the eyes by slowing down tear evaporation.
When your tear ducts and/or meibomian glands are compromised, you are likely to suffer from dry eye–and while allergies are certainly a common cause for dry eye symptoms, many more underlying health concerns can also be responsible.
Myth: The only symptom of dry eyes is…dry eyes.
Fact: DED can present itself in more ways than you might think.
One of these symptoms, though counterintuitive, is overactive tear production (causing watery eyes.)
Other common symptoms of DED include:
- eye strain
- stinging/burning sensation in the eyes
- sensation of something stuck in one/both eye(s)
- light sensitivity
- eye redness, etc.
- blurred vision
Experiencing any of these symptoms can be indicators of chronic dry eye. You should seek counsel from your eye care professional (ECP) to find relief for eye irritation as caused by any of these symptoms.
Myth: Everyone experiences dry eyes.
Fact: Sometimes, yes–but chronic DED is a distinctly diagnosable medical condition.
Occasional dry eyes can be caused by a number of temporary factors such as side effects from medication or ocular surgery; however, suffering from DED ongoingly is not a normal occurrence.
For those who chronically experience dry eye symptoms, it is important to schedule an eye exam with an ECP to determine possible underlying causes.
Myth: Dry eyes cause some discomfort, but they’re otherwise not a serious concern.
Fact: Suffering from persistent eye dryness and irritation can be debilitating for many and can have serious consequences if left untreated.
Some struggle daily to find relief for dry eye symptoms and resort to continuous use of lubricating eye drops throughout the day: For these individuals, eye dryness is a serious life impairment.
Moreover, the effects of DED when left untreated can include blurred vision, and even permanent vision impairment due to inflammation and scarring on the ocular surface.
As such, it is important for those with chronic dry eye to speak with an ECP about possible treatment plans as soon as possible. They can suggest an eye drop like Regener-Eyes® to help alleviate many of these symptoms.
Myth: Chronic dry eye cannot be fixed.
Fact: Chronic dry eye sufferers have a variety of treatment options.
Some find that lifestyle adaptations, such as a change in environment, or in work and diet habits, can yield natural results.
Physician-recommended eye drop treatments, such as Regener-Eyes®, may also offer significant symptom improvement.
Formulated specifically with anti-inflammatory cytokines and growth factors, Regener-Eyes® is a natural solution many ECPs recommend to dry eye patients seeking relief.
Interested in learning more about Regener-Eyes®? Contact us today and speak with your ophthalmologist or optometrist about how to try Regener-Eyes® for yourself!