Dry eye can make a person’s eyes dry, red, or irritated. In addition to being uncomfortable, it can damage the eye’s tissues and impair vision.
People usually begin experiencing dry eye symptoms as they age, but the condition can also result from eyelid or blinking problems, certain medications, environment, injury, and various health problems. The eyes may become dry and irritated because the tear glands don’t produce enough tears, or because the tears themselves have a chemical imbalance causing the tears to evaporate too quickly.
Non-surgical treatments include diet supplements, increasing humidity at home or work, and use of artificial tears or moisturizing ointment. If these methods fail, small plugs may be inserted in the corners of the eyes to limit tear drainage, or the drainage tubes in the eyes may be surgically closed.