Dry Eyes: Causes and Treatment

Dry Eyes: Causes and Treatment

Many people in Kelowna often complain about dry eyes because of the environmental factors in the area. iSight Optometry Kelowna has top Kelowna optometrists who provide comprehensive care to help patients understand and manage uncomfortable conditions. This blog post discusses what causes dry eyes, how to treat them, and the ways to prevent them. It also gives advice for keeping your eyes healthy during different seasons.

What are the Causes of Dry Eyes?

A decrease in tear production or increased tear film evaporation primarily causes dry eyes. Factors contributing to this include:


As we age, tear production naturally decreases causing dry eyes. Post-menopausal women are particularly susceptible to this condition. This is particularly noticeable among women undergoing hormonal changes during menopause, which can significantly disrupt normal tear composition and flow.

Environmental Exposure

Wind, dry air, and smoke can exacerbate tear evaporation making the eyes dry. Kelowna’s dry summers can particularly increase the risk.

Medical Conditions

Diseases like diabetes, thyroid disorders, and rheumatoid arthritis can impair tear production causing dry eyes. Additionally, conditions like Sjogren’s syndrome directly impair the moisture-producing glands.


Certain medications such as antihistamines, blood pressure medications, and antidepressants can reduce tear secretion. Some medications used to treat acne can also reduce tear secretion.

Digital Strain

Staring at screens for extended periods can reduce how often you blink. Taking breaks and blinking regularly is important when using screens for long periods. Keeping your eyes moist and healthy is essential for overall eye health. This can cause tears to evaporate more quickly, leading to drier eyes.

Identifying the underlying cause is crucial for effective management of dry eyes. This is why you should consult a Kelowna optometrist to work with you in managing this condition.

Will Dry Eyes Go Away?

For many, dry eyes can be a persistent issue, particularly if because of chronic conditions or age. Proper treatment strategies can effectively manage symptoms. Regular consultations with Kelowna optometrists at clinics like iSight Optometry Kelowna can help tailor treatments to individual needs.

Can Dry Eyes Cause Other Complications?

If left untreated, dry eyes can lead to more serious complications, such as:

  • Infections: Without adequate tears, the risk of eye infections increases.
  • Corneal Damage: Persistent dryness can lead to scratches or ulcers on the cornea.
  • Vision Problems: Severe dry eyes can impact the quality of vision, making daily activities difficult.

How Do You Treat Dry Eyes?

Effective treatment of dry eyes involves both over-the-counter solutions and professional interventions:

Lubricating Eye Drops

Artificial tears can provide temporary relief by supplementing natural tear production. These eye drops are usually available over-the-counter and can help.

Prescription Treatments

Your Kelowna optometrist may prescribe anti-inflammatory medications or eye drops that stimulate tear production. This is usually the course of action for more severe cases that have not responded to over-the-counter eye drops.

Punctal Plugs

Doctors insert these small devices into the tear ducts to slow the drainage of tears, keeping the eyes moist.

Environmental and Lifestyle Changes

Using a humidifier, wearing sunglasses outdoors, and taking breaks during long periods of digital screen use can help.

Dietary Adjustments

Eating foods like salmon and flaxseeds, which are high in omega-3 fatty acids, can improve the oil on your eyelids. This can help prevent tears from evaporating. Salmon and flaxseeds have omega-3 fatty acids that can improve the oil on your eyelids and stop tears from drying up.

Tips for Healthy Eyes During Spring

Spring brings unique challenges for eye care because of allergens and variable weather conditions. Here are some strategies to maintain healthy eyes:

  1. Protective Eyewear: Always wear sunglasses when outdoors to shield your eyes from UV rays and pollen.
  2. Optimize Indoor Environments: Use air purifiers and keep windows closed during high pollen days to minimize allergy symptoms.
  3. Stay Hydrated: Drinking plenty of water helps maintain overall hydration and supports healthy tear film.
  4. Regular Eye Exams: Schedule visits to iSight Optometry Kelowna to monitor eye health and adjust treatments as needed.
  5. Clean Regularly: Keep your living and working areas free from dust and allergens which can irritate the eyes.

Maintaining regular check-ups with a trusted optometrist is key to managing dry eyes effectively. At iSight Optometry Kelowna, the team of skilled optometrists is ready to provide the highest level of care. Learn why your eyes may have problems and how to fix them to keep your vision clear and healthy all year.