Do you suspect you have dry eyes? Dry eyes aren’t just an inconvenience. If untreated, dry eyes can lead to eye infections and critical eye problems.
Our board-certified ophthalmologists with Wolchok Eye Associates, PA, in Jacksonville, Florida, are the experts you want to see if dry eyes are a problem for you. Our thorough exam process includes special tests to determine if dry eyes are the issue or if you have another eye condition.
Causes of dry eyes
There are several causes of dry eyes. Some common medications can result in dry eyes: decongestants, antihistamines, hormone replacement therapy, and medicines for acne and birth control among them.
Do you wear contact lenses? They often cause dry eyes, especially if you sit for hours at a computer. Telltale signs are red eyes at the end of the day or the feeling that something is in your eye, such as a speck of debris.
Dry eyes can also be a side effect of laser eye surgery, but it’s usually temporary.
The following four medical conditions can cause dry eyes:
1. Autoimmune disorders
You’re more prone to dry eyes syndrome if you have an autoimmune disorder. Your immune system mistakes a part of your body as a threat, attacking it.
If you have Sjogren’s syndrome, rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, or another such disorder, your immune system attacks and disrupts the function of the glands that produce your tears, resulting in less tear production; you have dry eyes. If you have thyroid disease, you’re also at risk for dry eyes; it’s an autoimmune disorder.
You’re at risk for dry eyes if you have Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes. High blood sugar can result in nerve damage that limits tear production in your eyes. Keeping your blood sugar under control helps manage your risk for dry eyes.
3. High blood pressure
If you have persistently high blood pressure, you’re on medication. The medicine, likely either a beta blocker or diuretic, can result in dry eyes.
You’re even more likely to have dry eyes if you have high blood pressure and diabetes or thyroid disease.
Arthritis has many forms, but one commonality between the types of arthritis is inflammation. In types of arthritis that are especially inflammatory, sometimes the inflammatory cells change the surface of the eye, causing dry eyes.
It’s important to treat dry eyes when your symptoms first appear. Untreated dry eyes can cause scarring on your cornea and lead to compromised vision.
Call Wolchok Eye Associates, PA, or book an appointment through our online portal today for relief from your dry eyes and all-around expert eye care.