Focus Eye Center is pleased to announce the arrival of Dr. Trevor Hammons, who recently joined our eye care team. Dr. Hammons is a medically trained optometrist with specific training in eye disease diagnosis and treatment. He has a genuine passion for patient care and helping people. He truly loves working with people and never avoids an opportunity to laugh and have a good time. When he isn’t working, there is nothing he enjoys more than spending time with his family and the great outdoors, preferably a combination of the two!
Today we’d like to discuss a topic that affects a majority of Southern Utah residents and is commonly misunderstood. Dry eye syndrome is a lack of sufficient lubrication affecting the front tissues of the eye and symptoms include:
- Persistent dryness
- Itching and burning in your eyes
- Foreign body sensation in the eye
- Sometimes watery eyes due to over stimulation of the tear producing glands
- Fluctuating vision that requires tight blinking to clear.
The lack of sufficient moisture, besides causing discomfort, creates problems for your eyes because tears wash out dust and debris, keep the eyes moist and bathe the eyes with enzymes that neutralize the microorganisms that colonize the eye. Reduced tear production hinders these activities, which can affect the health of your eyes.
There are many causes of dry eye syndrome, a few include: living in a dry and hot climate, the aging process – especially during menopause, side effects of many medications, extended computer work and reading, symptoms of other diseases, and long term contact lens wear.
There are many different treatments for dry eye syndrome, and the effectiveness of the treatment relies on the clinical evaluation of your eyes to determine the specific cause. A few of the treatment include:
- Artificial tears – used to lubricate the eye and alleviate the dry, itchy feeling
- Restasis – a prescription eye drop that can increase your eyes’ natural ability to produce tears by decreasing the inflammation in the eye
- Punctual plugs – small bio-compatible devices inserted into the tear ducts to block tear drainage
- Autologous serum drops – eye drops compounded from the patients own serum for severe dry eye that is unresponsive to other therapy
- Alternative treatments – include humidifiers, drinking lots of water, and omega-3 fatty acids supplementation.
At Focus Eye Center, we specialize in diagnosing and treating dry eye syndrome. During your exam, we will determine the potential causes of your dry eye syndrome and recommend an appropriate treatment plan.