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If you have dry eyes you know how irritating it can be. And if you’re like many other people, there’s a good chance you spend lots of time looking at digital devices, which only aggravates the condition. At face value, dry eyes may seem like a mere inconvenience, however, this condition can actually develop into a serious problem when left untreated. Read on as a Lake Stevens, WA discusses dry eye syndrome and the harmful effects it can have over time.
As many as 16 million Americans live with dry eye syndrome each year. Symptoms of dry eye tend to vary from person to person. Here are a few of the most common ones:
Your eyes’ ability to produce tears plays a central role in causing dry eyes. And while this condition may not seem serious at face value, it can lead to more serious eye problems when left untreated.
Most people only notice their tears when they’re crying, but tears do a lot more than that. In fact, tears help keep your eyes healthy by providing ongoing lubrication, and they actually contain a balanced mixture of water, oils, and mucus. Consequently, dry eyes syndrome can develop when one or more of these ingredients is lacking. It can also develop when your eyes don’t produce enough tears.
A certain level of moisture is needed to keep the delicate structures that make up your eyes healthy. When dryness persists for months at a time, this can have harmful effects on your eyes.
Repeatedly rubbing your eyes can expose them to bacterial or viral infections. Rubbing may also cause scratches and tears on your cornea. Over time, cornea scarring can start to impair your vision and may even lead to blindness.
While over-the-counter remedies may offer temporary relief, they don’t treat the root of the problem and can even make matters worse. For these reasons, it’s important to have your eyes looked at and treated by an optometrist.
If you have more questions or wish to schedule an appointment, please feel free to call our Lake Stevens, WA optometry office today.