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Dry Eye Treatment

Dry Eye Treatment

What is dry eye?

Dry eye is a common eye condition that occurs when your tears are not able to provide sufficient lubrication for your eyes. In other words, if you don’t produce enough tears or you produce poor-quality tears, you may need dry eye treatment.

People with dry eyes may experience burning, scratchy, or red eyes that feel uncomfortable. You may even experience watery eyes on occasion. This is the body’s response to the irritation of dry eyes. Severe cases of dry eye can result in decreased vision.

Causes of dry eye

Your eyes have a thin fluid layer covering the ocular surface called a tear film. Dry eyes are caused by a number of reasons that disrupt the healthy tear film of your eyes. Tear film has a combination of layers namely: mucus, aqueous fluid, and fatty oils. The combination of these three layers keeps the surface of your eyes clear, smooth and lubricated. If you experience problems with any of these layers, it can cause dry eyes.  Other causes of tear film dysfunction include:

  • Decreased tear production or increased tear evaporation.
  • Hormone changes
  • Inflamed eyelid glands or allergic eye disease
  • Autoimmune diseases


If you suspect you may have dry eyes, look out for these signs and symptoms. They usually affect both eyes and may include the following:

  • Redness of the eyes
  • Scratching, burning, or stinging sensation in your eyes
  • A stringy mucus around or in your eyes
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Watery eyes
  • Difficulty wearing contact lenses
  • Eye fatigue or blurry vision
  • Difficulty driving at night
  • The gritty sensation of having a foreign object stuck in your eye


In most cases, dry eyes cause discomfort. In severe instances, it could lead to complications such as damage to the cornea. Other complications can include:

  • Eye infections – Because your tears protect your eyes from infections, having an inadequate amount of them can increase your risk of developing an eye infection.
  • Damage to your eye’s surface – Dry eyes may lead to other complications if left untreated. These can include corneal ulcers, eye inflammation, abrasion to the corneal surface, and vision loss.
  • A decline in your quality of life – If you suffer from dry eyes, performing everyday activities such reading start to become difficult.

Preventing dry eye

As with any medical condition, it is important to pay attention to situations that are most likely to cause your symptoms. If possible, find ways to avoid these situations so as to prevent dry eye symptoms. These can include:

  • Avoiding cigarette smoke – If you smoke, try to get help to quit. If you don’t try to avoid cigarette smoke. It can worsen your symptoms and increase your risk of developing dry eyes.
  • Adding moisture to the air – Home heating systems tend to dry the yes out. Humidifiers can help indoor air stay moist.
  • Avoid environments with a lot of air movement – Try to limit your exposure too air conditioners, hair dryers and fans that blow directly into your eyes. If you are outside, wear wrap-around sunglasses to block dry air and wind.
  • Rest your eyes – If you read, watch TV or sit in front of a computer screen often, take regular breaks so your eyes can regain some of their moisture.
  • Use artificial tears – Eye drops keep your eyes lubricated. Use them regularly to avoid dry eyes.


Over-the-counter or non-prescription eye drops provide relief for mild dry eye symptoms. If you are unsure about which one to use, speak to your eye doctor about your best options. Serious and more persistent symptoms may require you to pay a visit to your doctor as there may be other factors causing your dry eyes. Other prescription medications that may be used to treat dry eyes include:

  • Tear-stimulating drugs
  • Eye drops that control cornea inflammation
  • Eye inserts – these work as artificial tears
  • Medications that reduce inflammation of the eyelid

These simple home remedies can also provide some relief for dry eyes:

  • Blink more
  • Eat oily fish
  • Warm compress
  • Stay hydrated
  • Use a humidifier
  • Wear eye protection like wraparound sunglasses

Other procedures that your doctor can help you with to treat your dry eyes include

  • Prescribing special contact lenses
  • Closing your tear ducts to reduce tear loss
  • Light therapy

Dry eye is a common and often chronic problem that affects your quality of life. If you have prolonged symptoms and signs like any of the above mentioned, it is time to see your doctor. At Kloof Eye, we can perform tests to determine the cause and severity of your dry eye.

We care deeply about the health of your eyes and believe they are precious jewels of the body that deserve to be treated with care. If you are experiencing any symptoms of dry eye, get in touch with us as soon as you can. We will take the necessary steps to determine what is causing your dry eyes.