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Dry Eyes

Vision and Ortho-K Center

Curtis Frank, OD

Optometry & Specialty Contact Lens Practice located in Boston, MA & Newton Upper Falls, MA

Dry eye syndrome can occur at any age, but it’s more common as you get older. Curtis Frank, OD, an experienced optometrist, and the team at Vision and Ortho-K Center in Boston, and Newton Upper Falls, Massachusetts, expertly assess your dry eye symptoms and prescribe effective treatments to give you relief from red, irritated eyes. Dr. Frank and the team take a holistic approach and use state-of-the-art diagnostic testing to determine the underlying causes of your dry eyes, so you get long-lasting respite from symptoms. Call to schedule an eye exam, or book an appointment online.

Dry Eyes Q & A

What are dry eyes?

When your tears don’t provide enough lubrication or they are poor quality, you experience a condition known as dry eyes or dry eye syndrome. Dry eyes feel irritated and may sting or burn. Symptoms may get worse after staring at a computer screen for a few hours or when you’re in an air-conditioned room. 

What are the symptoms of dry eyes?

Symptoms typically occur in both eyes and may include:

  • Burning, scratchy sensation in  your eyes
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Red eyes
  • Eye mucus
  • Trouble wearing contact lenses
  • Trouble driving at night
  • Blurred vision
  • Eye fatigue
  • Watery eyes

Dry eye syndrome can make you feel like you frequently have something in your eye, like sand or grit. If your eyes feel painful and irritated, you shouldn’t wait to seek treatment. 

What causes dry eyes?

A lack of surface moisture on your eyes or poor tear quality can lead to dry eyes. Underlying causes include:

  • Dysfunctional tear syndrome
  • Dry corneas
  • Dry conjunctiva — the clear membrane covering your eyeball
  • Aging 
  • Medical conditions, such as diabetes
  • Certain medications
  • Tear gland damage
  • LASIK or other refractive surgeries

If your tear ducts don’t function properly or produce the right combination of tear components, you might experience a low-tear volume or poor tear quality. These underlying issues can lead to dry eye syndrome. Your environment can also contribute to dry eyes. 

How does an optometrist treat dry eyes?

At Vision and Ortho-K Center, the team evaluates all three layers of your tear film matrix, eyelid margin, and glands, along with other contributing factors that could be making your dry eye symptoms worse. They develop a customized treatment plan to relieve your discomfort, which may include lifestyle changes, artificial tears, and omega-3 supplements. The team also offers punctal occlusion and Restasis® eye drops. 

Punctal occlusion is a procedure that involves inserting a collagen or silicone plug into your tear ducts (punta) to block your tears from draining from your eyes. This allows them to remain on the front of your eyeball to keep it more lubricated. 

Taking frequent breaks from your computer screen and adding a dehumidifier to your home may also help with dry eyes, especially during the winter months when the air is drier.

For long-term relief from dry eyes, contact the office today by phone, or request the next available appointment through the convenient online booking system.