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What is dry eye?

Over the past years, different definitions have been used to describe a dry eye. However, the most popular one is from 2007 and it defines a dry eye as:

"a multifactorial disorder of tears and the eye's surface that results in symptoms of discomfort, disturbed eyesight, instability of tear film and a possible injury of the eye's surface. It is accompanied by an increased osmolarity of the tear film and ocular surface inflammation."

Dry eye cannot be cured its symptoms can be relieved and complications can be prevented.

In other words, there are different reasons that cause dry eye, but once it happens the patient always lacks the protective function of tears and thus suffers.

Dry eye is a chronic condition, which once diagnosed, accompanies you all through your life.

We can differentiate:

Hyposecretory dry eye - deficit of the aqueous (water) layer of tears

Hyperevaporative dry eye – up to four times higher level of evaporation of tears due to the lack of the lipid layer, which leads to spillover of tears over the edge of the eyelid

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  • Avoid factors that cause symptoms, such as staying in smoky or air-conditioned spaces, in strong wind or increased ventilation.
  • Avoid prolonged work at the computer or position the screen so that the upper outer edge is in level with your view, which minimizes the eyelid opening. Thus the eye is open less and tears evaporate less.
  • If you wear glasses, it is recommended you use larger frames that follow the face's curvature and thus minimize the eyes' exposure to different factors from the environment.
  • Make sure to blink more frequently. During any concentrated work (watching TV, work at the computer and similar) the reflex of blinking is minimized about five times. Thus the surface of the eye is less wet.
  • Artificial tears will certainly help relieve these symptoms.

If the symptoms persist, seek the advice of your ophthamologist.

Disorders of the dry eye

Occur with feelings of:

  • burning
  • sand
  • stinging
  • scratching
  • foreign body
  • increased watering
  • redness of eye
  • or other symptoms of discomfort of the eye

Disorders of dry eye can have different intensity, but they always occur in both eyes. They may be more pronounced in the morning or the evening.

Subjective disorders caused by dry eye can be extremely uncomfortable because they directly affect the quality of life.

With many patients, dry eye manifests itself with the feeling of general exhaustion, lower level of concentration, increased irritability and frequent headaches. The disorders are more pronounced in air-conditioned spaces, spaces with central heating, in strong wind or sunshine, and are increased during prolonged work at the computer or watching of TV. For women the disorders may be more intense during the pre-menstrual period.

If you have any of these disorders, please contact your ophthalmologist.

Causes of dry eye

Dryness of eye can occur due to:

  • disorder of the tear film caused by lack of tears or their abundant evaporation, which may lead to injury of the eye's surface and symptoms of discomfort
  • environment (central heating, air-conditioning units, fluorescent lights, smoke and wind)
  • prolonged work at a computer – intensive work at the computer minimizes the frequency of blinking up to five times, and each blink pushes out the lipids from iron and thus such intensive work lowers the protection of the eye
  • use of decongestive eye drops
  • wearing contact lenses
  • growing old – 75 % of people older than 65 years suffers from syndrome of dry eye. Is it considered that people older than 70 years of age have problems with dry eye due to menopause i.e. andropause
  • eye injuries or surgeries
  • gender (hormonal changes during pregnancies, breastfeeding, menstruation or menopause for women)
  • medicines (antidepressants, high blood pressure, contraception)
  • diseases (rheumatoid arthritis, diabetes, asthma, thyroid diseases, some autoimmune, dermatological and neurological diseases).

Artificial tears therapy

Artificial tears are not a medicine but rather a supplemental therapy for dry eye. They are used for protection, moisturizing and lubrication of the eye. Artificial tears create a protective layer on the eye's surface that evaporates slower than its own tears, minimizes the friction of eyelids during blinking and helps healing of smaller injuries of cells on the eye's surface. Artificial tears stay on the surface of the eye for about 20 minutes and thus relieve the subjective disorders of a dry eye and protect the eye itself.

There are many kinds of artificial tears that differ in their composition, thickness and whether they contain preservatives of not. Preservatives are not recommended in large quantities because they can cause irritation and injure the cells on the eye's surface. Patients who use artificial tears on a regular basis are especially at risk. Therefore it is recommended that artificial tears do not contain and preservatives.

Artificial tears without preservatives are less irritating and less toxic for the eye.

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How to relieve disorders of the dry eye?

Vizol S eye drops for dry eyes with 0,21 % and 0,4 % hyaluronic acid are used as a supplement to artificial tears. It is used for protection, moisturizing and lubrication of the eye. Use of eye drops provides quick relief from usual disorders.

  • Mild/severe dryness discomfort
  • Safe use
  • Quick results
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