What is Dry Eye?

cornea_dry_woman_eyes

Dry eye in Las Vegas is a very common disorder in which tears fail to lubricate and nourish the eye, due either to inadequate production of tears or poor quality of tears. At Wellish Vision Institute in Las Vegas, we are a Dry Center of Excellence. Tears consist of three layers: oil, water and mucus. Naturally, the water layer keeps the eye from drying out. The oil layer prevents the water layer from evaporating, while the mucus layer spreads the tears evenly over the surface of the eye. Deficiencies in any of these layers can cause symptoms of dry eye, despite their mutually exclusive etiology.

Dry eye can cause irritation, a scratching or burning sensation, and/or blurry vision. Paradoxically, it can also cause excessive watering of the eyes – this is because tear release is a reflex for eye dryness. Many people will mistakenly blame their dry eye symptoms on allergies. Dry eye is bothersome, can interfere with daily activities, and can even lead to other problems, like corneal ulcers, corneal scarring and even blindness, if left untreated.

Symptoms and Diagnosis of Dry Eye

Dry eye is very common, and it is particularly common here in Las Vegas. However, it is often improperly diagnosed, or even undiagnosed, even by reputable ophthalmologists or optometrists. Diagnosis of dry eye is somewhat difficult, and is best performed by an eye doctor with extensive experience with the disease, such as our own Dr. Wellish.

    Common symptoms include:

  • Dryness, naturally
  • Tearing, counterintuitively
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Discomfort and irritation
  • Tiredness
  • Itching or burning sensation
  • Grittiness
  • Foreign body sensations on or near the eye
  • Disturbance in vision
  • Redness in eye