Dry Eyes-How to Use Artificial Tears

Dr. Kisling Dry Eyes, Fort Collins Eye Doctor, Stinging Eyes 1 Comment

Optometrist Secret To Using Artificial Tears

The secret to using artificial tears is twofold.:

  1. First you must choose the correct type for your dry eye problems
  2. Second you need to use artificial tears without preservatives or use one of the so called “vanishing preservative” tear brands.

Dry Eye Syndrome Is More Than Dry Eyes

Dry Eye Syndrome should really be called Dry Eye Syndromes since it can be caused by a dysfunction in any of the three components of the tears.

  • Most people think of the aqueous layer, or the watery component of the tear film as being deficient when dry eye problems are present. Most artificial tears are aimed at improving this layer. Refresh Plus and Theratears non preserved work well for many people.
  • The Lipid Layer or oily layer of the tears serves to stabilize the tear layer and slow down loss of the watery component form evaporation.  Systane Balance and  Tears Again Advanced Liposomal Spray are two drops that work better when the lipid layer is dysfunctional or deficient.
  • The Mucous Layer of the tear film helps the moisture component of the tears spread across the front surface of the eyes. Both sodium hyaluronate and HPMC/dextran help deficient mucous layers and are found in the artificial tear products Oasis & Blink.  A number of tear replacement drops contain either propylene glycol or polyethylene glycol with  hydroxypropyl guar (HP-guar) which has also been found to be useful in treating Dry Eye Syndrome caused by dysfunctions in the mucous layer.


Optometrist Finds Dry Eyes  Fort Collins Climate GO Together

Fort Collins has low humidity and a large number of patients have dry eye symptoms of burning, stinging, and red eyes by the end of the day. We usually recommend you use non-preserved artificial tears. Because most people will be using rewetting drops fairly often, using solutions without preservatives means no toxic chemicals are repeatedly added to your eyes. These types of solutions come in little single use vials since there are no preservatives to keep the solutions sterile once they are opened. They should be used throughout the day 3-4 times. It is important to spread the use throughout the day. If you wait until your eyes are feeling dry and irritated there are microscopic alterations to the corneal eye tissue that will cause it to remain irritated even with moisture eye drops. Artificial tears vary in the components they contain and at this point in time there is inadequate research to truly determine the best brand for each individual with Dry Eye Syndrome. Your optometrist should be able to help guide you in making more informed choices in lieu of the future where evidence based medicine will prevail.

 Schedule an appointment for a Complete Eye Doctors Dry Eye Evaluation Exam and discussion of all of your dry eye treatment options.

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