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Dry Eyes As We Age

Dry Eyes As We Age

Some say that with age comes wisdom, confidence, and kindness. A slightly less pleasant aspect of reaching the golden years is the heightened risk of developing ocular conditions such as dry eye syndrome (DES).

While aging is inevitable, fortunately, dry eye syndrome is not. Dr. Shaun Golemba can help manage symptoms with the latest dry eye treatments to ensure that your eyes stay feeling fresh and clear of any irritation.

What Is Dry Eye Syndrome?

Dry eye syndrome is a common, yet treatable, eye condition where the eyes aren’t sufficiently lubricated. This leads to a host of uncomfortable symptoms, listed below. The severity of DES symptoms can range from mildly bothersome to incapacitating.

What Are Dry Eye Symptoms?

Some symptoms of DES include:

  • Eye redness
  • A stinging or burning sensation in the eyes
  • Stringy mucus in or around the eyes
  • Blurred vision
  • Watery eyes
  • A gritty feeling, similar to having something in your eyes

If you experience any of the above symptoms, schedule an eye exam with Dry Eye Center At Valley Vision Optometry to determine the root cause of your dry eye and receive the relief you need.

What Causes Dry Eye?

DES can be caused by many factors, including pollution and dry air, allergies, poor tear quality, or insufficient tears. Healthy tears are made up of a combination of 3 layers: water, mucus, and oil. Any imbalance in this precise cocktail can result in DES.

elder woman using smartphoneHow Does Aging Engender Dry Eye?

The process of tear production slows as we age. If the lacrimal glands produce fewer tears, the quantity of your tears decreases. In addition to diminished quantity, problems with tear quality can result in a reduced production of oil and mucus.

Furthermore, certain medications can also pose a higher risk of DES for patients, especially those over the age of 50, when medications are more commonly prescribed. Frequently prescribed medications like antihistamines and blood pressure tablets can cause or exacerbate dry eye symptoms.

Several medical conditions and chronic diseases, including diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis and Parkinson’s disease, are more prevalent in people over the age of 50, and are known to cause DES in many patients.

How Are Dry Eyes Treated?

If you suspect you may have DES, know that the symptoms can be minimized or completely eliminated. Many people assume that over-the-counter remedies, such as lubricating eye drops, are the end of the line for DES treatment when this isn’t the case. At Dry Eye Center At Valley Vision Optometry, we know that DES can cause severe discomfort, and we’re here to help.

If your dry eye symptoms remain after trying over-the-counter lubricants, then Dr. Shaun Golemba can provide a more comprehensive examination and discuss with you some more effective treatments than those available at the local drugstore.

With aging comes wisdom, and with wisdom comes booking your next eye exam at Dry Eye Center At Valley Vision Optometry. Don’t let dry eye symptoms reduce your quality of life — let us help you find relief.

Dry Eye Center At Valley Vision Optometry serves patients from Vancouver Island, Lower Mainland, Okanagan, Kootenay’s, and throughout British Columbia.

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We are currently offering in-office care by appointment only.

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COVID-19 UPDATE

The following is a summary of the steps we have taken to protect your safety.

Physical Distancing Measures:

o Reducing density of people: We have adopted a schedule which will reduce the amount of patients in our facility at one time.

o We will have some of our team working from home operating a call centre and tele-medicine pre-screening.

o Spacing stickers have been placed on our floor.

Engineering controls:

o Forms have been digitized and will be emailed to patients in advance of the appointment to minimize contact.

o A “For Payment" button has been installed on our website, valleyvisionoptometry.ca for patients to be able to pay from home to minimize contact.

o Plexiglass barriers have been installed at all 3 Front Desk stations

o Our doors will remain locked during Phase 2, opening the door to let in scheduled patients only.

o A dropbox has been installed for patients to drop off glasses in need of repair.

o Contact lens sales are administered through our webstore.

Administrative controls:

o Cleaning protocols have been written. Staff training on these protocols has been scheduled.

o Clear rules are posted on our front door and throughout all of the stations in our office.

Personal protective equipment:

o Patients will be required to wear a mask upon entry to the office and throughout their time with us. Those who do not have a mask will be supplied a surgical mask upon entry.

Policies around sickness:

o Employees and patients with cold or flu symptoms will be required to stay home.

Frequent hand washing:

o Patients, Doctors, and our Team will be required to wash hands upon entry and exit in to the exam rooms.

o Eyewear Consultants will wear gloves when handling eyewear and performing adjustments.

We currently are operating a reduced schedule, so are triaging patients to ensure those with the highest needs are prioritized.

Sincerely,

Dr. Shaun Golemba

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As of May 19th, we have re-opened by appointment only. Our current hours are Monday to Friday, 8am – 4pm. Please call our office to schedule an appointment. Read about our safety protocols here.