It has been said that Colorado is the dry eye capital of the United States due to our high altitude and extremely low humidity throughout the year. In the Denver area, this dry eye climate is further exacerbated by increasing levels of smog and air pollutants in general. Statistics show that at least 10% of the population have dry eye syndrome but realistically in the Colorado environment, the figures are much higher. Individuals with dry eye problems usually exhibit burning, stinging and dryness of their eyes. They may actually notice that there is too much tearing, leading to constant tears presenting throughout the day. Although it doesn’t make sense that an increased tearing may signify dry eye, the reason is that this type of dry eye is due to reflex tearing, caused by some external irritant. The resultant tears produced are not of the same quality as the normal, natural tear, which is needed for optimum ocular health.
If you are an outdoors person, this dry eye condition may be worse when you are outside than when you are inside your home, with the exception being in the dead of winter, when you have the heat going all day and night. A humidifier may be helpful in your bedroom to help you sleep at night and lubricating eyedrops may help during the day. Our doctors at Eyecare Consultants Vision Source prefer Systane Ultra due to its excellent mechanism of action and the fact that it seems to work better than any other drop on the market.
If this doesn’t help enough, however, since we do so much dry eye treatment in our office, you would be well-served to make an appointment with one of us at 303-771-4221. We will try to determine if your dry eye condition is primarily due to a tear deficiency or has evaporative causes. Depending upon the etiology, we will find the best treatment program for you. Give us a call today before this relatively aggravating condition gets worse and becomes chronic in your life.
Author: Dr. John Schachet
Eyecare Consultants Vision Source
8586 East Arapahoe Road, Englewood CO