on Thursday, June 7, 2012
Older women may not know, but dry eyes are a condition commonly associated with menopause. In fact, according to the Society of Women’s Health Research, 62% of women have dry eye symptoms but only 16% of them knew that it may be linked to menopause.
While the cause of dry eyes in menopausal women is not yet known, some theories are that menopausal women have a decrease in certain hormones that help with tear production, or menopausal women experience a disruption of chemical signals that maintain a healthy tear film. Whatever the cause may be, dry eyes can affect a patient’s quality of life.
Some symptoms of dry eye are irritated, scratchy, dry, uncomfortable, or red eyes; a burning sensation, foreign body sensation in your eyes, and blurred vision. Excessive dry eyes may damage eye tissue, scar corneas, and impair vision. Dry eye symptoms tend to be worse at the end of the day; after a long time reading, or looking at a computer screen.
Patients with dry eyes don’t need suffer in silence. There are treatments available to patients to help alleviate the symptoms of dry eyes. An eye care practitioner can recommend a variety of remedies. Some remedies include eye drops, dietary supplements of omega-3 fatty acids, or a combination of remedies.
For patients interested in wearing contact lenses, an eye care practitioner may be able to direct dry eye patients to a contact lens that suits their special needs. Proclear lenses such as Proclear 1 day multifocal contact lenses are the only contact lenses on the market to carry the FDA-approved labeling statement, ‘May provide improved comfort for contact lens wearers who experience mild discomfort or symptoms relating to dryness during lens wear.’
Make sure to see an eye care practitioner if you want to learn more about dry eyes and menopause.