Several factors contribute to the development of dry eye syndrome, both external and internal. Dry eyes can affect anyone at any age but it has been proven that the majority of sufferers are women. Twice the number of females suffer from dry eye syndrome compared to the number of men. Here’s why…
Over the course of their lifetimes, women go through more hormonal changes than men. Hormone levels change during pregnancy, during the menopause and while using the contraceptive pill. Hormones are powerful chemicals produced by the body which have an effect on hydration levels. These changes cause dry skin, hair and also dry eyes. This is why changes in hormone levels increase the risk of developing dry eye syndrome. As a result, women are 50% more likely to develop the syndrome.
Hormones play an important part in tear production. When they are imbalanced, this disrupts the quality of tears produced. To protect the eyes, tears are produced with a mix of water, oils, and mucus. If the ratio of water to mucus is affected by the imbalance in hormones, this affects the tear production. When this happens, the surface of the eye is not as protected as it should be, causing that burning or stinging sensation.
What you can do
Unfortunately, some of these hormonal changes are unavoidable; they are natural changes that occur internally. The best way to deal with dry eye syndrome is to tackle the symptoms such as adjusting your diet so you eat foods that are high in omega 3 which will help protect the eye encourage oil production in the eye glands and keeping hydrated. At Crescent Heights Optometry we also offer a range of dry eye treatments that can help so check out our dry eye management page for more information or schedule an appointment with us today.