An astounding number of people all over the world suffer from dry eye syndrome every day. This means they are experiencing blurry vision and eyes that are uncomfortable, gritty, and itchy.
They may even be in pain. But it doesn’t have to be this way. Dry eyes can be stopped with the correct treatment plan. Keep reading to learn more about LipiFlow and if it could be right for you!
The Causes of Dry Eye: Tear Production vs. Tear Quality.
There are two main reasons that people suffer from dry eye. The first is how many tears the eye produces. The second is the quality of those tears.
If your eyes are not producing enough tears, then they are not hydrated, causing dry eye symptoms. The reasons for a lack of tears range from damage to tear response nerves in the eye to genetics.
Tear quality is a bit more complicated. A healthy tear has three ingredients: water, mucus, and oil.
The water has the hydration and nutrients that the tear delivers to the eye. Mucus helps spread the tear evenly across the eye’s surface.
The oil prevents the tear from evaporating before it has a chance to nourish the eye. Usually, when a patient has an issue with tear quality, it is due to a problem with oil production.
The most common cause of a lack of oil in tears is when the oil-producing glands become blocked with a natural waxy substance.
What Is LipiFlow?
LipiFlow is a therapeutic treatment designed to unblock oil-producing glands in the eye. This allows tears to form with the necessary oily outer layer.
It is used worldwide, including at Westlake Eye Specialists to help our patients suffering from chronic dry eye syndrome. The system works by applying gentle heat and pressure to the eyelids where the glands are.
Applicators are single-use. This means that they are very sterile. The process is simple, fast, and far from painful.
In fact, many people find receiving LipiFlow to be relaxing! A session takes about 12 minutes to perform.
To get the best results from LipiFlow, it can take several months. This gives your glands enough time to recover from the treatment.
Other Dry Eye Treatment
To receive LipiFlow, your eye care specialist will need to perform simple diagnostic tests. This is to ensure that it will help.
If your dry eye is being caused by another factor, you may need alternative treatment. Other methods of dry eye treatment include:
- Changing your environment to reduce exposure to dry eye inducing particles and allergens.
- Managing symptoms with eye drops.
- Punctal plugs, which your doctor inserts into your tear ducts to reduce tear evaporation.
- Practicing healthy screen use habits.
- Inserts that slowly dissolve in your eye, producing more tears.
- Medication that stimulates tear production.
If you suffer from dry eye symptoms, the first step is to find out why your eyes are dry. Understanding the root cause of your dry eyes is the key to treating them and finding relief.
Ready to take control of your dry eye symptoms? Schedule an appointment at Westlake Eye Specialists in Austin, TX, and find out if LipiFlow could be right for you!