How Do Eye Doctors Treat Severe Dry Eyes?

While there are several over the counter and home remedies for treating severe dry eyes, they often only offer a short term relief for the eyes.

If you’re experiencing dry eye symptoms that aren’t going away, it’s probably time to see an eye doctor.

There are two types of eye doctors – ophthalmologists and optometrists. Optometrists are do more general primary care for the eyes, while ophthalmologists handle surgical and eye conditions for more advanced diseases. Either should work just fine, talk to family and friends to see if they recommend anyone, or simply do a near me search to find a local eye doctor with good reviews.

To help treat severe dry eyes, eye doctors have 3 primary options:

  1. Prescription Medications
  2. Eye Inserts
  3. Eye Procedures

Prescription Medications For Treating Severe Dry Eyes

Probably the most common, and easiest dry eye treatment option will be prescription medications for the eyes.

They are generally prescribed orally, or as eye drops.

Your eye doctor will give you an eye exam to determine the source of your dry eyes, but most will focus on reducing inflammation of your eyelids or help stimulate tears.

One excellent prescription for this is cyclosporine, known as Restasis.

Eye Inserts For Treating Severe Dry Eyes

If over the counter or prescription eye medications don’t help alleviate your dry eyes, your eye doctor may recommend eye inserts.

Eye inserts look like a small grain of rice and are inserted into your eye like a contact.

Small and clear, the eye cubes release medicine throughout the day to keep the eyes moist, helping to prevent dry eye symptoms.

Eye Procedures For Treating Severe Dry Eyes

If the before mentioned treatments don’t help, or your doctor diagnoses other issues during your eye exam, they may have you consider eye procedures.

Scleral or bandage contact lenses are one such option. They’re designed to help stop moisture from escaping the eye.

Closing your the tear ducts may be considered as well, the thought being that with nowhere to drain, tears will stay in the eye longer.

Finally, your eye doctor might try to clear blocked oil glands by the eye. This is accomplished in a quick procedure that places a large lens over the eye and under the eyelid.

In the end, you will need to work with your eye doctor to determine the root cause of your chronic dry eye symptoms, and decide on the appropriate treatment together – good luck!