When Should I Treat My Dry Eyes? | Dry Eye Austin | Westlake Eyes

When Should I Treat My Dry Eyes?

Woman Suffering from Dry Eyes

Suffering from dry eyes is not necessary. You can treat dry eye, although it may take some trial and error.

In most cases, you may need to try a combination of things to treat the root of your dry eye. Keep reading to learn more about when to treat your dry eyes!

Dry Eye Symptoms

You should come to Westlake Eye Specialists if you are experiencing any of the following:

  • Itchy eyes
  • Burning or stinging sensation in the eyes
  • Redness
  • Blurry vision
  • Light sensitivity
  • Eye fatigue
  • Mucus discharge around the eyes
  • A “foreign object” sensation like something is in your eyes when nothing is there.
  • Watery eyes (this happens when your eyes overcorrect and produce too many tears)

If you elect to avoid treatment and just live with these symptoms, you run the risk of the dry eye becoming worse. In its worst forms, severe dry eye can cause permanent damage to your vision.

This can be by causing corneal ulcers or abrasions, which can lead to scarring of the tissue.

Dry Eye Treatment & Prevention

Treating dry eye can take many different forms. For many patients, they are often combined with each other and prevention is always a key focus.

Punctal Plugs

One way to deal with dry eye is to use devices called “punctal plugs”. These are small inserts that function to stop or slow tears from draining off the surface of your eyes.

They are placed inside the tear ducts. They come in two varieties: semi-permanent and temporary.

Temporary punctal plugs dissolve after a certain amount of time. They are often used to determine if punctal plugs would help.

Semi-permanent plugs are placed inside the tear ducts to deal with dry eye in the long term. Like temporary punctal plugs, semi-permanent plugs are also easily removed.

They can be removed if they are not effective or they are too effective and cause excessive watering.

Meibomian Gland Expression Therapy

Another option is meibomian gland expression therapy. The lids of our eyes contain tiny glands called meibomian glands.

These glands coat the outside of every tear produced with oil. This oil is a key component in keeping the tears from evaporating before it can nourish your eye.

Sometimes, these glands become blocked with a naturally occurring waxy substance. If the glands become blocked, it prevents a significant amount of the eye’s oil production.

Gland expression therapy gently unblocks the glands. This is done using warm compresses and gentle pulses directed at the lids themselves. The process is simple and relaxing, never painful.


Prevention can work in many different ways. Adding a humidifier to your home or workplace can make it easier for your eyes to produce tears.

Another thing to consider is making sure you stay hydrated. If you already feel thirsty, it’s a sign that you need to drink more water.

You should also clean your spaces to reduce allergens and irritation.

Ready to stop living with the frustrating symptoms of dry eye? Schedule an appointment at Westlake Eye Specialists in Austin, TX today!

We’ll help diagnose the root cause of your dry eye and get you on the road to better eye care!