Dry Eye | Whitby & Co | Independent Opticians London | Fleet Street
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Whitby & Co. - Fleet Street Clinic

Dry Eye

Our eyes rely on tears to provide continuous moisture and lubrication, in order to maintain vision and comfort. “Dry eye” is a condition where the eye either does not produce enough tears, or the tears evaporate too quickly.

Symptoms of Dry Eye

  • Uncomfortable, gritty eyes
  • Redness – the white of the eye appears red
  • Light sensitivity
  • Blurred vision
  • Itchiness
  • Tired eyes
  • Confusingly, one common symptom is excessive eye watering, especially in windy weather

Causes of Dry Eye

Dry eye can affect anyone, although it becomes more common as we get older. Common causes are:

  • Structural problems of the eyelid, preventing proper closure
  • Diseases compromising the ability to produce tears, including
    • Rheumatoid arthritis
    • Collagen vascular disease
    • Sjogren’s syndrome
  • Side-effects of medication such as:
    • Birth control pills
    • Antihistamines

How to Treat Dry Eye

Many people have dry eye experience mild irritation with no long-term effects. However, if the condition is left untreated or becomes severe, it can produce complications that can cause eye damage, potentially resulting in impaired vision.

  • Regularly use artificial tear drops and ointments to keep eyes lubricated as the main treatment
  • Avoid prolonged reading, watching television, electronic devices, and driving
  • Avoid dusty, smoking, windy areas especially aeroplanes, air conditioners, and heaters
  • Avoid rubbing your eyes and blink regularly
  • Humid places such as the shower may offer some relief
  • Hydrate the eyes by consuming more water
  • The eye condition blepharitis can co-exist with dry eyes. It is advised that you perform daily eyelid cleansing routine (warmth, massage and cleanse)

Other Treatment Options:

  • Steroid eye drops are used for short-term use and quickly manage inflammatory factors in conjunction with artificial tears
  • Nutritional supplements as part of a holistic treatment plan
  • Punctal occlusion (a technique for blocking the tear duct to stop tears from draining away into the nasal passages)
    • There are temporary treatments available that can be tried, and also…
    • Non-dissolving punctal plugs and punctal occlusion by cautery
  • Lipiflow is an automated, in-office dry eye treatment
  • Restasis, which aims to reduce inflammation

Looking After Your Eyes

An eye examination is a vital health check and should be part of everyone’s regular health care.

Book an Appointment at Whitby & Co

If you have any concerns about the health of your eyes, please call us on 020 7353 4455 to arrange an appointment or book online.


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