Normally, the eyes should be constantly moistened. This is one of the important conditions for their normal functioning. If the hydration of the cornea worsens, the mucous membrane dries out and the eyes begin to hurt. If this continues for a long time, then the normal properties of the eye are gradually lost. Simply put, dry eye syndrome can lead to partial, and in severe cases, complete loss of vision. Therefore, you need to be attentive to yourself and, having noticed the symptoms of a dry eye, consult a doctor.
Causes of Dry Eye
The mucous membrane of the eye consists of three very thin membranes. The top layer of lipid or fat inhibits the evaporation of other layers. Then comes the tear fluid, which, in fact, serves as an eye moisturizer. It also contains nutrients. In addition, the tear fluid performs an additional function of light refraction. Well, the third layer is mucinous or mucous. It borders the cornea itself. It protects against infections, germs and small foreign bodies. A small amount of tear fluid may be present on the surface of a healthy mucous membrane of the eye. In this case, it washes away dust particles, the smallest foreign bodies, and dirt. When blinking, a natural cleansing of the eyes occurs. In a calm state, about 2 ml of this liquid is released per day. When we cry, of course, this figure increases significantly. Crying occasionally can be helpful. Eyes clean themselves well without injuring the mucosa. After crying, the tear fluid is renewed and better nourishes the cornea with useful substances.
Dry eye syndrome can develop as a primary, true disease. But it may be a symptom of some other disease. One way or another, this must be corrected so as not to bring to dire consequences. The cause of a dry eye can be impaired, insufficient tear formation. As a result, the layers of the mucosa may become thinner and lose their functions. If we consider dry eye syndrome as a symptom of a disease, we can distinguish a number of diseases that can provoke dry mucous membranes. It can be vitamin deficiency or a lack of certain vitamins, for example, vitamin A. Diseases of the endocrine system, hormonal failure can also worsen the condition of the eye mucosa and cause dryness. Such a syndrome is often observed in those people who wear contact lenses. This means that they are chosen incorrectly and do not fit the person. In this case, it is enough to switch to other contact lenses or glasses and the problem itself will be removed. Dry eyes can be caused by an allergic reaction or exposure to any medication.
But perhaps the most common cause of dry eyes in our time is a violation of the computer. Agree, now in every house (not counting the few exceptions) there is this technique. It’s either a computer, or a laptop, or a tablet. The e-book, iPhones and smartphones can rightly be attributed to the same category. Even if the permanent job is not connected with the computer, then at home we always use such devices. And how much time we spend on phones, we surf the Internet, read electronic books. Nobody probably thought, but this time is enough to affect vision. It’s not even a matter of harmful radiation (although this is also important), but the fact that a person looks very enthusiastically at the screen. At the same time, he begins to blink 2-3 times less often than usual. Naturally, in this case, the mucous membrane evaporates, the layers become thinner and this leads to dry eyes.
Absolutely at any age, you can “earn” yourself dry eye syndrome, but people over 40 are most prone to this ailment. About 30% of all people after this age observe this disease. This is due to the fact that the hormonal background changes, the production of tear fluid slows down. The most significant changes occur in the body of a woman when the period of menopause begins. Therefore, sufferers of dry eye syndrome, most often women.
Symptoms and treatment
The main symptoms of a dry eye include a burning sensation, redness of the eye protein, and the manifestation of small vessels. In this case, it is often required to strain one’s eyes in order to read something, to examine in detail. Visually impaired vision, blurry small lines. Eyes with such an ailment can react poorly to any eye drops. This is manifested in acute burning, pain. In some cases, an increase in lacrimation can be observed, but this serves as a kind of compensator and does not help fight dryness.
Treatment of dry eye syndrome begins with identifying the causes. The main objectives of the treatment are: stimulation of tear production, minimization of evaporation and thinning of the mucosa, reduction of the outflow of tear fluid through the nose. The latter task is, in some cases, fundamental to successful treatment. Since the channels of the eye and nose are combined, lacrimal fluid can go through the wrong duct and enter the nasal cavity. This may be a variant of the norm, for example, when we cry. Or it can happen all the time, then it needs to be adjusted. In this case, surgical excision of the lacrimal glands can correct the situation. There is an alternative orthopedic method so that the tear fluid gets into the eyes. For this, a special silicone cutter is made, which blocks the lacrimal canal. This method is the most gentle and preferred if the disease is not prolonged.
If dry eye syndrome is caused by improper organization of work with a computer, then treatment most often comes down to the appointment of moisturizing and regenerating drops. Immediate recommendations are made to minimize computer work. If this is impossible and is a professional activity, then every half hour it is necessary to be distracted from the monitor screen for at least 5 minutes and do simple exercises for the eyes.