- Dry eye
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Dry eye syndrome


What is dry eye syndrome?

Dry eye syndrome, or dry eye disease, is a common condition that occurs when the eyes do not make enough tears or the tears evaporate quickly.  This results in the eyes drying out and becoming inflamed and irritated.


The symptoms of dry eye syndrome usually affect both eyes and may include:

  • dryness, grittiness or soreness that worsens through the day 
  • red eyes 
  • eyelids that stick together when you wake up 
  • temporarily blurred vision, which usually improves when you blink 

Dry eye syndrome may be caused by a disruption in the tear making process.  Common causes include:

  • exposure to a hot or windy climate 
  • wearing contact lenses 
  • certain underlying medical conditions, such as blepharitis (inflammation of the eyelids) 
  • hormonal changes 
  • medications 

Although the condition can affect people of any age, it is more common the older you are and is more prevalent in women than men.  It is estimated that to one in every three people over the age of 65 experience problems with dry eyes.  


What does treatment involve?

Treatments include eye drops to lubricate the eyes and medications to reduce any inflammation.  If necessary, surgery may be recommended to improve the flow of tears.


If the symptoms are caused by an underlying condition then treating this condition will usually provide relief.


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