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Anybody suffer from dry eye?

CJ2008

Ideal_Rock
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I went to the eye doctor a few months ago and found out I have severe/chronic dry eye.

I had never realized before how much my eyes actually hurt.

I also had never realized how much I am constantly squinting probably to keep them from burning.

I don't know if part of it is psychological - but wow are they uncomfortable.

I use Systane drops but I had become so used to my eyes hurting that I don't always "remember" to put the drops in.

If you have this how do you deal with it?
 

the_mother_thing

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I am in the same boat, and it does suck! I also use Systane long acting (keep one in bathroom, one at my desk, one in purse ...), and my doc prescribed me Restasis, but I have the hardest time remembering to put the RX drops in morning & night. Then the burn starts and I race for a cold wet washcloth or towel to blot my eyes, put my drops in, then proceed to kick my own ass for forgetting.

There has GOT to be something "modern" something that causes this ... It's not make up (I rarely wear any), not my skin care regimine, it's not seasonal (e.g. Pollen) ... I don't recall my elders ever having this issue.
 

Queenie60

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My dry eye is not severe however it has caused me to have light flashing in my eyes and a few other strange things. I too use Systane regularly and it has helped a lot.
 

PintoBean

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Yup - DH and I were told we have dry eye, computer eye? :sun: He's supposed to apply an ointment, but he doesn't... I found that using a humidifier 24/7 during the winter made my eyes more comfortable. Right now, my eyes feel rather dry, and I don't know if it's psychosomatic - darn thread!
 

AprilBaby

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I do and I tried restasis but it Felt like my eyes were burning out! I take fish oil and vitamin E and that gives me better results.
 

mary poppins

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I have severe, chronic dry eyes to the point that it sometimes interferes with my quality of life and ability to read as much as I need or would like to.

It's important to keep eyes appropriately moist because chronic dryness can cause physical damage to the eyes and/ or more rapid change in vision.

First, if you are on any medications, check to see if there are known side effects of causing dryness. Antihistamines and some antidepressants, for example, cause dryness.

Second, if you also have dry mouth or dry nose and have eliminated medication as the source of the problem, you should have a GP or rheumatologist run tests to determine if you have Sjogren's Syndrome. You might also experience a variety of other symptoms if you have Sjogren's as it's a systemic autoimmune disease.

After eliminating medication as source of the problem, see an eye doctor to determine if there is a reason for dry eyes such as allergies or infection. The eye doctor can also conduct tests to determine quality and quantity of tears. If you produce good quality tears but not a good quantity, a doctor may suggest insertion of punctal plugs in tear ducts so the tears can accumulate rather than drain. If you have poor quality tears (for example, mine evaporate too quickly) punctal plugs generally are not worthwhile.

I use Restasis (anti-inflammatory eye drops) in the morning and at night. They kind of sting when kept at room temperature. Keeping them refrigerated eliminates that problem.

If you use lubricating eye drops frequently, it's better to use preservative-free ones which are in vials rather than bottles. I prefer Refresh Plus which luckily, based on the amount I use, are available at Costco. Some people think the vial lubricants are all the same, but Refresh Optive, for example, seems to be more of a solution or suspension that accumulates annoying globs in the corner of my eyes. Find something you like and stick with it. I keep vials in the living room, on my night stand, in my bathrooms and on my desk so they are always available.

I use a microwavable moist heat compress which helps to get oil out of the glands in my eyelids and provides relief. http://www.amazon.com/Thermalon-24342-Dry-Eye-Compress/dp/B004385RPS


Before bed and if lubricating drops aren't working well enough during the day, I use Genteal eye gel drops which are thicker than regular lubricating drops and provide longer relief. They also temporarily causes blurry vision. Some people use ointment at night or an eye mask.

Other things I do:
- keep a bottle of eye drops in my purse.

- sleep with a vaporizer near my bed.

- adjust the HVAC humidity level so the house isn't super dry, especially with the heat during the winter.

- when driving, move vents so air is not blowing on my face.

- use a personal steamer such as this http://www.amazon.com/Vicks-V1200-Personal-Steam-Inhaler/dp/B0000TN7MY

- per ophthalmologist's recommendation, take flaxseed oil supplement but I haven't really noticed that making a difference.

dryeyezone.com is a good resource for additional information.

ETA: Restasis manufacturer has a co-pay assistance program so sometimes you can get supply for free or discount. Ask your eye doctor if he or she has the card and brochure or check Restasis website for additional information.
 

asscherisme

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Yes, I use to wear contacts and can't wear them anymore so I wear my glasses all the time now.

For those of you who have dry eyes, what does it feel like to you? I feel like I have something constantly in my eye. Like an eye lash but there is nothing there. Sometimes if feels like a grain of sand. It drives me crazy.
 

missy

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Hi CJ and fellow dry eye sufferers. As you get older your body produces less tears and your oils glands produce less oil so that is why it is more common as we age. Other common causes of dry eye syndrome include diabetes, Sjogren's syndrome, contact lens wear, LASIK surgery, computer use (remember to look away from your computer every 10 minutes or so to refocus for far and purposefully blink...blinking is critical to maintaining a healthy eye environment), medication side effects. Some research shows dietary deficiency of omega-3s can exacerbate dry eyes and for some supplementation with omega 3s is helpful. Adding healthy fish to your diet is the best way to get the omega 3s.

It can be a challenge but you can effectively manage dry eye. Marym and the other posters had excellent suggestions and I wholeheartedly agree with everyone of them.

There are different types of dry eye and if you read the dry eye zone link you will understand the mechanism behind what is causing each type and how best to manage it.

http://www.dryeyezone.com/faq/index.html

However most doctors do a trial and error shotgun approach. I recommend finding a good eye doctor who knows what they are doing and has the appropriate in office test for the most best and most efficient. Also there are lots of systemic diseases that can exacerbate dry eye so again it is good to be aware and checked out fully but most causes of dry eye don't have any serious causes.

I am going to summarize much of what was already written by other posters but is worth repeating because it works.

1. Restasis(Rx only) kept in fridge to remove any sting twice a day twelve hours apart. Takes a few weeks to start working so don't give up too soon and take it for at least 3 months to give it a chance for full effect. Shouldn't cost more than $25. Ask your doctor for a savings card.

Not a solution for many but for those with chronic dry eye disease it will probably give you relief if you give it enough time because it increases the natural ability of your eyes to produce tears if your tear production has been reduced by inflammation which you see in chronic dry eye disease. But if you have punctual plugs it does not increase tear production so Restasis would not be an option.


2. Preservative free (cannot emphasize this enough) rewetting drops generously throughout the day. Does not need to be refrigerated.I always recommend preservative free because many of us with chronic dry eye are sensitive to preservatives and many environmental conditions. I recommend and use single dose Refresh Plus because it is preservative free and as mentioned by Mary available at Costco for a reasonable price.

Make sure once you open the single dose vial you throw it away after you instill the drops. They contain no preservatives and therefore can become contaminated with bacteria/fungi etc so do not save for the next use. Put in one drop in each eye wait about 20 sec and put in another drop in each eye and then discard the vial. Your eye can only hold so much volume at one time so one drop, wait 20 sec second drop and then discard.

3. Humidifiers in the home (and office if you can manage that) work to help your dry eyes and skin.

4. Warm lid compresses every evening and morning and if you have time in the afternoon too. I love Thermalon moist heat compresses and the Bruder moist heat compresses. You can get either at Amazon.

http://www.amazon.com/Thermalon-Dry-Eye-Compress-Pack/dp/B00BI0XA1W/ref=sr_1_3_a_it?ie=UTF8&qid=1459591309&sr=8-3&keywords=thermalon

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B000E57CWA/ref=sr_ph_a_it?ie=UTF8&qid=1459591339&sr=1&keywords=thermalon

http://www.bruder.com/eye/documents/literature-eye-compress.pdf


5. Lastly I like to recommend gentle cleansing of your lids/lashes right before bed with a gentle lid cleanser like Ocusoft or Sterilid. Dry eyes contain increased bacteria on the eyelids and eyelashes that contribute to dry eye irritation. I recommend premoistened pads for ease of use so you will do it every night. The reason behind this is cleansing your lids will remove the bacteria, the debris and stimulate your meibomian glands. The key here is to be consistent and gentle and you will see an improvement over time. For those of you with more severe dry eye/blepharitis/MGD I recommend cleansing of your lids/lashes twice a day. Once in the AM when you wake up and right before bed.


Good luck CJ and anyone else managing dry eye and please keep us posted. If you have any further questions please don't hesitate to ask.
 

MarionC

Ideal_Rock
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Dec 9, 2013
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I have dry eye. My doctor showed me a photo of my - Missy I don't know what it is called, but that line on the inside edge of the eye where the glands are?
Then she showed me a photo of a healthy eye where the glands were secreting lubricant. {again, Missy, I don't know the real terms lol]
My glands were blocked and she said to use hot compresses several times a day and gently scrub that part of the eye lid. I got a lot of relief from that.

Missy, oh for Pete's sake, I just read your post : (
Sorry to repeat!

anyway, that really worked for me.
 

GlamMosher

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asscherisme|1459576863|4014466 said:
Yes, I use to wear contacts and can't wear them anymore so I wear my glasses all the time now.

For those of you who have dry eyes, what does it feel like to you? I feel like I have something constantly in my eye. Like an eye lash but there is nothing there. Sometimes if feels like a grain of sand. It drives me crazy.
My main symptom was my eye (just one) was watery all the time! I was seeing my ophthalmologist for a check up and mentioned it to her - she said you have dry eye. I said no no no it's watery!!! Apparently the gland that produces water when you cut onions overworks to compensate for the lubricating gland not producing enough and that gives you the watery eyes. (very non-technical explanation! 8) )
 

canuk-gal

Super_Ideal_Rock
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HI:

I use ointment at night, otherwise I'd be toast! Eye drops in our arid climate is a must.

We also eye vitamins--OcuVite or the like.

cheers--Sharon
 

CJ2008

Ideal_Rock
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Thank you all so much I will come back and respond better when I have a little more time.

Seems like a humidifier (or a vaporizer / personal steamer) are musts.

Any brand recommendations on humidifiers?

I did a little searching and of course reviews are mixed for ALL models. I'd like to get two, possibly, one for each bedroom. If we really like it then I might also get one for the larger area like the living room.
 

KaeKae

Ideal_Rock
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A big thank you to CJ for bringing up this topic and to everyone, especially mary poppins and missy for the information shared.
I started having trouble with burning, watery eyes last spring. I took drops I had at home, then I saw my eye doctor in the summer and he prescribed Systane. When I saw him again in January and shared that it was getting worse, he prescribed Restasis. I am definitely having relief, but not 100% yet. In addition, the doctor did not tell me about the rewards program :( You can be sure I will be calling him tomorrow to see about getting a 90 day prescription and making sure he knows to share info on the program.

Thanks, again. KK
 

marcy

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Oh yes I do. My eye doctor told me my tear ducts are plugged up and I should us a warm rag over my eyes and kind of gently rub on my eyelid. If I faithfully do that it helps but sadly I don't. I occasionally remember to use the refresh drops that Missy mentioned. All of a sudden my eyes will just leak a flow of tears like I am crying. I always try to get sympathy then that I am crying. :lol:
 

maccers

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I do too; confirmed by my eye doctor recently. I take breaks from wearing my contact lenses and use preservative free eye drops during the day. However what's given me the most relief are these night time gel drops, GenTeal. They are also preservative free. I pop them in just before going to bed and wake up with fresher eyes. :)
 

mary poppins

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CJ2008|1459722970|4015045 said:
Thank you all so much I will come back and respond better when I have a little more time.

Seems like a humidifier (or a vaporizer / personal steamer) are musts.

Any brand recommendations on humidifiers?

I did a little searching and of course reviews are mixed for ALL models. I'd like to get two, possibly, one for each bedroom. If we really like it then I might also get one for the larger area like the living room.
A humidifier/vaporizer is a different device than the personal steamer in terms of scale and purpose. The former provides moisture to a room (examples: http://www.target.com/c/humidifiers-home-appliances/-/N-5xtuj) while the latter, intended for inhaling steam through nose and mouth, is like a sauna for the eyes (example: http://www.amazon.com/Vicks-V1200-Personal-Steam-Inhaler/dp/B0000TN7MY). The latter is also good for natural headache and sinus relief, if that is an issue for you.

The main consideration when purchasing either is ease of cleaning. Personal steamers are generally pretty simple to clean, but a poorly designed humidifier/vaporizer can develop mold or mildew which you don't want to spread through your environment. You'll want a device that is easy to clean to prevent that. I use white vinegar to clean mine. Another consideration is noise level. It's expected that a humidifier might make some noise but you may not want a loud one.
 

Tacori E-ring

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I have very dry eyes which causes my eyes to water frequently. My triggers are wind and cold. It probably looks like I am crying! I haven't tried eye drops yet.
 

CJ2008

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JoCoJenn I hear you I forget to put the drops in all the time. And yes I was also surprised that so many of the PSers also have dry eyes. Maybe it stems from always looking at screens - iPads TVs PCs etc.

Queenie60 what do you mean? You mean out of nowhere you'll have flashes of light in your eyes? And does it block your vision in that moment? :shock:

PintoBean darn that's the word *I* should have used >>> psychosomatic instead of I think I said "mental" :lol: showing me up Pinto! haha :)

AprilBaby I'm taking Viviscal supplements right now (for hair) that have fish oil, so maybe that will help.

Sorry to hear that mary poppins - I feel like so far it hasn't interfered with my life to that extent but I can see how it could. They really feel so uncomfortable.

And thank you for telling me about the importance of keeping eyes moist. I didn't realize that it could cause damage, I thought it was just about comfort. This is going to help in reminding me putting in the eye drops.

I'm not on any medications...but I do feel I sometimes have dry mouth/always feel thirsty. I'll look up Siogren's Syndrome. Thank you.

And yes, I forgot to mention that the time I went to the eye doctor he did insert plugs - but I don't remember him making the distinction between quality versus quantity of tears. I'm thinking the plugs don't last forever or do they? (in other words are they still in there now? for some reason I thought they would dissolve).

I'll definitely look into Refresh Plus (or the Optive) - hopefully I won't have to be a Costco member to get them there.

I'll also look into the heat compress you mentioned, the thicker eye drops, dryeyezone.com, etc.

I looked at a lot of reviews for room humidifiers but I'll take a closer look at the personal vaporizers more - sounds like it's easier to get a good one than the room humidifiers. And yes, just like you say, all the reviewers recommended looking for something easy to clean because of mold, etc.

Thanks again so much for all your tips.

asscherisme Once in while I do feel like I have something in my eye, yes...not too often but when it does it does drive me crazy, but had never linked it to dry eyes.

missy You know, every once in a while it will bother me that I feel like I am always thirsty and diabetes is one of the things that always comes up as a possible reason. But the Drs say that my blood test results don't point to diabetes. I do need to make sure to look away from the PC way more often than I do I am probably on it for hours before I look away. :(

I think I have plugs - like I said above for some reason I thought they'd dissolve but I guess they don't.

Then again I didn't particularly like the Dr. I went to see - he was odd - so it's probably a good idea to go see someone else to see what they think/recommend.

missy your tip about putting in one drop, waiting, and then putting in the other drop helped me so much. I had no idea. So every time I was putting in more than 1 drop of Systane I couldn't understand why basically it would overflow out of my eyes.

I'll look into the Thermalon and Bruder moist heat compresses. Thanks for the links.

I'll also look into the lid cleansers.

I'm wondering about applying Grande Lash (I probably shouldn't use anything like this I'm thinking :/ but other than my eye lids being really irritated the first week, they are fine now) - but since the instructions stay to wait I could use the wipes wait 30 minutes before putting it on.

Thanks jimmianne the hot compresses sound like a good idea and it helps to hear from more than one person makes me want to get it even more (sounds relaxing, too, actually)

GlamMosher yes sometimes my eyes are super watery and I thought the same! I even thought oh, maybe they're getting better! :lol:

Thanks canuk-gal the ointment sounds comforting too.

KaeKae I'm so glad this thread helped you. I definitely learned so much from it. Did you end up being able to save $ on the Restasis?

marcy I'm usually in front of my PC when any tears happen so I get no sympathy :(sad I'll have to start making sure to do it in front of DH :lol:

Thanks maccers I'll look into the GenTeal drops. Waking up with fresh eyes sounds so good. I feel like I don't remember what it feels like to have normal eyes.

Tacori E-ring the drops really help (and I haven't even tried the good ones/preservative-free that people have recommended. So I'm excited to try those.

Thanks again everyone! :wavey:
 

missy

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CJ glad you are getting relief! :appl:
It probably is a good idea to d/c the Grande lashe at least for a while to see how it affects the moisture of your eyes.
And I cannot overemphasize the importance of looking away from your PC every 10 minutes or so and blinking and refocusing for distance. Blinking helps remoisturize your eyes and refocusing helps eye strain.


Queenie! I missed your flashing light sxs. Please go to a retinal specialist as soon as you can if you have not already done so. Flashing lights could mean many things but one of the ominous causes is retinal pulling that could lead to a tear or detachment so please get your eyes dilated to rule that out ok? Most likely it is not that but not worth the risk of delaying diagnosis because the quicker you find a tear the better the chances of complete recovery.
 

KaeKae

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CJ2008|1460301362|4017610 said:
[KaeKae I'm so glad this thread helped you. I definitely learned so much from it. Did you end up being able to save $ on the Restasis?

:wavey:

Yes, I did! Unfortunately, I can't get the #0 copay at this time, because my insurance won't allow 90 day supplies (why???) but I am now saving $20/month, thanks to the savings program! Hey, 12 x $20 till equals $240 saved each year.

Thank you, thank you.
 

Queenie60

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missy|1460301889|4017614 said:
CJ glad you are getting relief! :appl:
It probably is a good idea to d/c the Grande lashe at least for a while to see how it affects the moisture of your eyes.
And I cannot overemphasize the importance of looking away from your PC every 10 minutes or so and blinking and refocusing for distance. Blinking helps remoisturize your eyes and refocusing helps eye strain.


Queenie! I missed your flashing light sxs. Please go to a retinal specialist as soon as you can if you have not already done so. Flashing lights could mean many things but one of the ominous causes is retinal pulling that could lead to a tear or detachment so please get your eyes dilated to rule that out ok? Most likely it is not that but not worth the risk of delaying diagnosis because the quicker you find a tear the better the chances of complete recovery.
Thank you Missy - I will call him this afternoon. Had my eyes checked in November, new glasses and all. And the eye doctor told me that he "owes" me as my eyes will need to be dilated sometime soon. I appreciate your input. Seems I have been very sensitive to lights for the past few months. I have been drinking more water and it seems to have subsided a bit however your comment has alarmed me a bit. Glad I said something on this thread.
 

missy

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Queenie60 said:
missy|1460301889|4017614 said:
CJ glad you are getting relief! :appl:
It probably is a good idea to d/c the Grande lashe at least for a while to see how it affects the moisture of your eyes.
And I cannot overemphasize the importance of looking away from your PC every 10 minutes or so and blinking and refocusing for distance. Blinking helps remoisturize your eyes and refocusing helps eye strain.


Queenie! I missed your flashing light sxs. Please go to a retinal specialist as soon as you can if you have not already done so. Flashing lights could mean many things but one of the ominous causes is retinal pulling that could lead to a tear or detachment so please get your eyes dilated to rule that out ok? Most likely it is not that but not worth the risk of delaying diagnosis because the quicker you find a tear the better the chances of complete recovery.
Thank you Missy - I will call him this afternoon. Had my eyes checked in November, new glasses and all. And the eye doctor told me that he "owes" me as my eyes will need to be dilated sometime soon. I appreciate your input. Seems I have been very sensitive to lights for the past few months. I have been drinking more water and it seems to have subsided a bit however your comment has alarmed me a bit. Glad I said something on this thread.
I don't want to alarm you because as I wrote there are innocuous causes to flashing lights. However the serious causes need to be ruled out first before arriving at the correct diagnosis. To that end I am relieved you will make an appointment to have a dilated retinal evaluation. Good luck and don't worry.

Bring sunglasses to your appointment as dilation makes your eyes even more photophobic due to more light getting in when your pupils are dilated. Also do not drive yourself to the exam. You should not drive for at least 4 hours after the DFE as your vision will be compromised for a few hours.
 
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