Dry eye syndrome is a collection of symptoms that develop when eyes are chronically dry. Symptoms can vary from one person to another and can include:
Usually, dry eye affects both eyes, but in a few cases, it may affect only one eye.
Dry eye syndrome occurs when there is a problem with the tear quality, the composition of the tears, the production of tears or the way the tears are distributed. Some of the most common causes of dry eyes include:
Treatment depends on the underlying cause of dry eye symptoms. Some patients may benefit from the use of lubricating prescription eye drops that help moistens the eye and prevent irritation and redness on the eye surface. However, prolonged use of some eye drops can cause symptoms of dry eyes to become worse over time; therefore, patients should avoid over-the-counter drops. Oral anti-inflammatory medicines or antibiotics may be needed to treat some causes of dry eyes. When an issue affecting the tear ducts or eyelids is present, surgery may be necessary to correct it. Taking frequent breaks when using a computer or performing other close-up work may also help.
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