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What’s the Link Between Dry Eye and Menopause?

Dry Eye and Menopause 640Around 61% of perimenopausal and menopausal women are affected by dry eye syndrome.

During menopause, the body produces less estrogen, progesterone, and androgen, causing a variety of uncomfortable symptoms such as sweating, insomnia, and hot flashes.

Among these physical symptoms is dry eyes, characterized by dry, itchy and burning eyes.

If you’re experiencing dry eyes, contact The Dry Eye Center Of NY & NJ today for effective and lasting dry eye treatment.

Biological Changes That Affect Your Eyes

During menopause, the androgen hormone decreases, affecting the meibomian and lacrimal glands in the eyelids. The meibomian glands produce the essential oils for the tears, so the reduction in oil results in increased tear evaporation and drier eyes.

When these fluid and oil-producing glands are affected, the eyelids can become inflamed, reducing tear quality and production, resulting in dry eye syndrome.

Some researchers believe that dry eye is connected to changes in estrogen levels. This explains why many women experience dry eye symptoms during certain times of a woman’s monthly cycle, or while taking birth control pills.

Symptoms of dry eye syndrome

  • Red eyes
  • Burning in the eyes
  • Itchy eyes
  • Blurred vision
  • Gritty feeling in the eyes
  • The feeling something is caught in your eye. Excessive tearing

How Is Hormone-Related Dry Eye Treated?

Because reduced hormones during and after menopause can cause meibomian gland dysfunction, treatment should be focused on reducing dry eye symptoms.

Dry eye treatments can include:

  • Artificial tears
  • Lubricating eye drops
  • Eyelid hygiene
  • Oral antibiotics
  • Corticosteroid eye drops
  • Medications that reduce eyelid inflammation
  • Punctal plugs – to reduce tear flow away from the eyes

Frequently Asked Questions with Dr. Alan B. Schlussel

Q: Are there home remedies to treat dry eye syndrome?

  • A: Yes. Here are a few things you can do at home to reduce dry eye symptoms.

    Limit your screen time. People who work at a computer all day blink less, which harms the tear film. Remember to take frequent breaks and to blink.
    Protect your eyes. Sunglasses that wrap around your face can block dry air and wind.
    Avoid triggers. Irritants like pollen and smoke can make your symptoms more severe.
    Try a humidifier. Keeping the air around you moist may help.
    Eat right. A diet rich in vitamin A and omega-3 fatty acids can encourage healthy tear production.
    Warm Compress. A warm compress will improve oil flow through your eyelid glands and clean your eyelids.

Q:Can dry eye syndrome damage your eyes?

  • A: Yes. Without sufficient tears, your eyes are not protected from the outside world, leading to an increased risk of eye infections. Severe dry eye syndrome can lead to abrasions or inflammation on the cornea, the front surface of the eye. This can cause pain, a corneal ulcer, and long-lasting vision problems.

    Menopause causes many changes throughout your body. If you’re experiencing dry eye symptoms due to hormonal changes, contact The Dry Eye Center Of NY & NJ to find out what dry eye treatments are available to give your eyes relief.



The Dry Eye Center Of NY & NJ serves patients from New York City, Newark, Jersey City, and Elizabeth, all throughout New York.

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Is Your Face Mask Causing Dry Eye Syndrome?

Dry Eye Syndrome Treatments At Dry Eye Treatment Centers of NY and NJ

Dry Eye Syndrome Treatments At Dry Eye Treatment Centers of NY and NJ

Social distancing and face masks have become the first line of defense in preventing COVID-19. These protective measures are essential to fighting the virus’ spread.

While masks help protect you and others from COVID-19, eye doctors have seen an increase in dry eye cases among those who wear them.

If you’re seeking effective relief, contact Dry Eye Treatment Centers of NY and NJ in NYC as soon as possible. We’ll offer the best solutions for your mask-associated dry eye (also known as “MADE”).

What is Mask-Associated Dry Eye?

Eye doctors have been seeing an increase in dry eye cases at their practice. Patients with existing dry eye syndrome complained that their symptoms worsened when wearing a mask, while other patients complained of first-time symptoms.

Dry eye symptoms result when fast movement of air caused by exhalation leads eye tears to evaporate. A face mask that doesn’t fit securely can push air from the mouth and nose upward onto the eyes.

What is Dry Eye?

Dry eye syndrome causes the eyes to feel gritty, sore, irritated, and dry, and can potentially damage the cornea, if left untreated.

Dry eye syndrome is typically caused by a number of reasons, including health and eye conditions, gender, age, and taking certain medications. Dry weather conditions, indoor heating, air conditioning, and not blinking sufficiently — which is common when staring at a computer screen — can also contribute.

How to Prevent Dry Eye

Here are some easy measures you can take to reduce dry eye:

Mask sure your mask fits correctly

If your mask doesn’t fit properly, your breath will escape from the top of your mask, potentially causing dry eye symptoms. To prevent this, choose masks that fit snugly under your eyes and around the bridge of your nose.

Limit your time in dry environments

If your mask is causing your eyes to feel dry, try to limit your time in windy or dry-air environments, such as windy outdoor weather and air-conditioned rooms.

Keep in mind that people tend to blink less frequently when staring at a screen or reading a book. Blinking provides your eyes with much-needed lubrication, so remember to blink!

Use a warm compress

If your eyes are irritated and sore, dampening a washcloth with warm water and placing it on your closed eyelids for a few minutes can help. The warmth of the water can help stimulate your tear glands to produce more liquid and oil to help keep your eyes lubricated throughout the day.

Use eye drops

Using eye drops can provide the extra lubrication your eyes need to prevent them from drying out. Your eye doctor can advise you on the best drops for your eyes.

Speak to your eye doctor

The best way to minimize your dry eye symptoms—whether caused by a face mask or something else—is to consult your eye doctor, who will examine your eyes and prescribe treatment.

Frequently Asked Questions About Dry Eye Syndrome

Q: Why do my eyes sting when I wear a mask?

  • A: When wearing a loose mask the exhaled air goes into your eyes, which can cause your eyes to sting. So make sure it fits snugly around the bridge of your nose.

Q: What kind of face mask is best to prevent dry eye?

  • A: Ideally, you should wear a face mask with a pliable nose-wire so that it can curve to your cheeks and nose, which reduces air directed toward the eyes.For more information about keeping your eyes healthy while wearing a face mask, contact Dry Eye Treatment Centers of NY and NJ in NYC. We can help determine the underlying cause of your dry eye and offer you the best solution.


Try These 5 Home Remedies For Dry Eye Syndrome

Quality Eye Care At Dry Eye Treatment Centers of NY and NJ

Quality Eye Care At Dry Eye Treatment Centers of NY and NJ

If your eyes sting, burn, or feel scratchy you may have dry eye syndrome (DES), a condition that is usually caused by low-quality or low production of tears.

There are many factors that can cause dry eyes. Smoke and dry air can dry out the eyes, and so can wearing contact lenses, taking certain medications, and spending long periods of time reading a book or looking at a computer screen. In addition, our eyes tend to get drier as we age.

No matter the cause, dry eye syndrome can be extremely uncomfortable, and in severe cases can damage the cornea.

While only Dr. Alan B. Schlussel can diagnose and treat dry eye syndrome, these 5 home remedies may provide some relief.

Warm Compresses

A warm compress will improve oil flow through your eyelid glands and clean your eyelids. You can make them at home with a small face cloth and warm water or purchase compresses at your local pharmacy.

Eyelid Wash

A great form of preventative care is eye washing. Washing your eyes you can keep your tear ducts and eyelids from getting blocked.

To help remove crust from your eyelids and eyelashes and to keep your eyes cleaner, try applying a sting-free shampoo. Some pharmacies sell over-the-counter eyelid and eyelash washes to clean these areas.

Add Omega-3 to Your Diet

Oils are a necessary component of tears, as they add lubrication and reduce evaporation. Dry eye syndrome can result from insufficient oil, so adding omega-3 to your diet can increase the oil in tears.

To increase your omega-3 intake, either take supplements or eat foods that contain high levels of the fatty acid.

Foods that contain Omega-3 include:

  • Chia seeds
  • Flaxseed
  • Palm oil
  • Soybean oil
  • Tuna
  • Salmon
  • Walnuts

Take Frequent Breaks and Blink More

When watching TV, reading, or using the computer many people forget to blink. It’s important to take breaks and blink more to inspire the flow of tears, which helps keep the moisture in your eyes intact. A well-known rule to follow is the 20-20-20 rule. It involves taking breaks at least every 20 minutes to look 20 feet away for 20 seconds — especially when staring at a computer screen or digital device for long periods.

Tweak Your Environment

Environmental factors can cause or exacerbate dry eye symptoms. Heat, dust, smoke, pollution, high winds, and air conditioning all dry out our eyes. Using a cold-mist humidifier and not sitting directly in front of an air conditioner, heater, or fan can help reduce eye irritation.

Stay Hydrated

Last but not least: drink more water! Staying well-hydrated is good for your eyes and is critical for producing healthy tears, clearing out debris, blinking, and seeing comfortably. Be sure you drink lots of water to maintain your eye health, and of course, overall physical well-being.

Home remedies can relieve mild dry eyes but are not a replacement for a comprehensive eye exam. If the symptoms persist or worsen, contact Dry Eye Treatment Centers of NY and NJ in NYC. We are committed to keeping your eyes healthy and your vision clear.

6 Contact Lens Tips for Winter Weather

contact lens eye exam near me

Contact Lens Eye Exam | Dry Eye Treatment Centers of NY and NJ

Winter’s cold, brisk, windy outdoor weather coupled with hot and dry indoor heating can take a toll on your eyes — especially if you wear contact lenses.

Neither situation is ideal for optimal eye comfort, so what can you do to make wearing contact lenses more comfortable this winter? Below are a few tips to help you navigate the winter contact lens wearing issue. However, if you still have questions about your contact lenses or general eye health, contact Dry Eye Treatment Centers of NY and NJ in NYC and we’ll be happy to help!

Tips For Contact Lens Comfort This Winter

1. Stay Hydrated

Since the eyes are part of an entire system, a dehydrated body means dehydrated eyes. This can lead to eye redness, irritation, grittiness, and other symptoms of dry eye syndrome. So make sure you stay hydrated by drinking at least 8 cups of water a day. And no, coffee and alcohol don’t count!

2. Put Moisture Back Into the Air

Heating systems are notorious for causing eye dryness and irritation. Whether you have central vent heating, a fireplace, a space heater, or wall radiator — you’ll want to combat the arid air with a cool-mist humidifier. Your eyes will thank you for it!

3. Don’t Overwear Your Contacts

Each pair of contact lenses is designed to be worn for a specific amount of time. Whether it’s for the number of hours you wear them per day or how frequently they need to be replaced with a fresh pair. So make sure to follow your eye doctor’s instructions to avoid eye discomfort.

4. Give Your Eyes a Break

If the weather is making your contact lenses uncomfortable, why not wear your specs from time to time? It can change up your look and give your eyeballs a rest. Consider removing your contacts when you’re home from work or school and see how you feel.

5. Protect Your Eyes With Sunglasses

Sunglasses are a year-round must, but even more so for contact lens wearers! Cool winds and even light breezes can cause the moist surface of your eyes to evaporate more quickly. Wearing shades helps maintain ocular hydration.

And don’t forget – always wear a quality pair of sunglasses that offer 100% UV protection.

6. Visit Your Eye Doctor

If your contact lenses aren’t feeling as comfortable as they should this winter season, the best thing you can do for your eyes is to schedule a contact lens consultation with your eye doctor.

Sometimes, contact lens discomfort is due to ill-fitting lenses. In such cases, trying a different type or brand of contact lens may be the solution. If winter dryness is the problem, your eye doctor may prescribe lubricating drops or lenses designed to retain moisture.

Our dedicated staff is committed to helping you achieve the highest level of comfort and visual clarity.

Don’t let contact lens irritation get in your way of enjoying winter. We can help! Contact us to schedule an eye exam or to ask any questions you may have.

Glaucoma & Your Eye Health What You Need To Know

Eye Doctor in NYC | Dry Eye Treatment Centers of NY and NJ

Eye Doctor in NYC | Dry Eye Treatment Centers of NY and NJ

Glaucoma is a leading cause of irreversible blindness in people over the age of 40. In honor of National Glaucoma Awareness Month, here’s what we think you should know about this sight-threatening eye disease.

What Is Glaucoma?

Glaucoma is an eye disease that causes damage to the optic nerve, usually due to high pressure within the eye, called intraocular pressure (IOP). Left untreated, glaucoma can lead to irreversible vision loss, known as ‘tunnel vision,’ and eventually blindness.

The ‘Silent Thief of Sight’

This serious eye condition is known as ‘the silent thief of sight’ as it is often diagnosed too late to avoid irreparable vision loss. This is because glaucoma does not cause pain or any obvious symptoms until the eye has been extensively damaged. The only way to reduce your risk of permanent vision loss is to undergo regular comprehensive eye exams starting from the age of 40, even if you show no symptoms.

Who’s at Risk?

Certain factors can increase your risk of developing glaucoma:

  • Age — your risk of developing glaucoma increases with age. Because this is true for several eye diseases, it is recommended that adults undergo yearly comprehensive eye exams beginning at age 40. This is usually the age when early signs of eye disease are detectable and changes in vision may begin.
  • Family history — people who have a close relative (parent or sibling) with glaucoma are up to 9 times more likely to develop the disease.
  • Nearsightedness — myopia, or nearsightedness, increases a person’s risk of developing glaucoma. The higher the myopia, the higher the risk.
  • Ethnicity — The African American and Hispanic populations are 3 times more likely to have glaucoma than Caucasians. Blindness due to glaucoma is about 6 times more prevalent in African Americans than in Caucasian Americans. Additionally, individuals of Asian heritage have a higher risk of developing angle-closure glaucoma, a sudden and acute form of the eye disease.
  • Other health conditions — Having diabetes puts a person at risk of developing glaucoma, and so does sustaining a previous eye injury.

Is There a Treatment for Glaucoma?

While glaucoma isn’t preventable, patients with glaucoma can undergo treatments to successfully control this condition and prevent vision loss and blindness.

Glaucoma treatments include prescription eye drops, oral medications, and a variety of surgeries that reduce inner-eye pressure. Some procedures involve making small incisions in the eye to help fluid drain more easily, thereby reducing the pressure. Alternatively, small devices known as shunts or stents can be inserted into the eye to increase the flow of the fluid from the eye.

How We Can Help

Here’s a fact about glaucoma that may come as a surprise: half of all people with glaucoma don’t realize they have it! That’s why having yearly comprehensive eye exams is critical to detect underlying eye disease and begin treatment as soon as possible.

At Dry Eye Treatment Centers of NY and NJ, we offer comprehensive eye exams and other eye care services to help keep your eyes feeling and functioning at their best.

To schedule your eye exam, call Dry Eye Treatment Centers of NY and NJ in NYC today!

5 Ways to Set Up Your Home Computer to Reduce Eye Strain

Dry Eye Treatment Centers of NY and NJ | Computer Glasses in NYC

Dry Eye Treatment Centers of NY and NJ | Computer Glasses in NYC

Nearly 60% of people who routinely use computers or digital devices experience symptoms of digital eye strain — also called computer vision syndrome — according to recent data. Since COVID-19 began, the number of hours spent on a computer for tasks like working from home, online schooling, and online shopping has increased dramatically.

Symptoms of computer eye strain include eye fatigue and discomfort, dry eye, headaches, blurred vision, neck and shoulder pain, eye twitching, and red eyes.

If your eyes feel dry and tired, your vision is blurry by the end of the day, or your head, neck, and shoulders ache, the way you utilize your computer and other digital devices might be to blame.

How to Reduce Eye Strain

Spending less time in front of your computer is the best way to reduce digital eye strain, but if you’re working from home or you or your children are learning online, that might not be an option.

Here are 5 steps you can take to lower your risk of eye strain:

1. Use proper lighting

Excessively bright light, either from sunlight or from interior lighting, can cause eye strain.

By reducing exterior light (by closing your drapes, shades or blinds), and tweaking the lighting inside your home (using fewer light bulbs or fluorescent tubes, or lower intensity bulbs and tubes) you can lower glare and reflections off the screen.

Also, if possible, position your computer screen so the windows are to the side, instead of in front or behind it.

2. Blink more often

When staring at a screen, people blink one-third less frequently than they normally do. Blinking moistens your eyes to prevent dryness and irritation.

To reduce your risk of dry eye during computer use, every 20 minutes blink 10 times by closing your eyes very slowly. This will lubricate your eyes and help prevent dry eye.

3. Relax your eyes

Constantly staring at a computer screen can lead to focusing fatigue, which causes digital eye strain. To reduce your risk of tiring your eyes, look away from your computer at least every 20 minutes and gaze at a distant object (at least 20 feet away) for at least 20 seconds.

Some eye doctors call this the “20-20-20 rule.” Looking far away relaxes the focusing lens inside the eye to reduce fatigue.

4. Take frequent breaks

Taking frequent breaks from your screen can help reduce eye strain and neck, back and shoulder pain during your workday.

It is recommended to take at least one 10-minute break every hour. During these breaks, stand up, move about and stretch your arms, legs, back, neck and shoulders to reduce tension and muscle aches.

5. Modify your workstation

Poor posture also contributes to digital eye strain. Adjust your workstation and chair to the correct height so your monitor is not too close to, or too far from your eyes, or in a position that causes you to crane your neck.

Position your computer screen so it’s 20 to 24 inches from your eyes. The center of your screen should be about 10 to 15 degrees below your eyes for comfortable positioning of your head and neck. With this adjustment, you will not only reduce neck, back, and shoulder pain, but reduce eye strain as well.

People experience different levels of digital eye strain, so if after you have shut down your computer the symptoms persist, then you may have a visual problem that requires attention from your eye doctor. If these symptoms are ignored and nothing is done to alleviate the eye strain the problem will only worsen.

Having a yearly checkup can help you preserve your eye health. Contact Dry Eye Treatment Centers of NY and NJ to learn more about how to keep your eyes healthy and reduce eye strain when working on computers.

Top 5 Holiday Gifts for People Who Wear Glasses

holiday gifts 640

The holiday season is upon us. For most people, that means going online or running to the mall to shop for gifts. When buying a present for someone who wears glasses it’s good to know what’s trending today. At Dry Eye Treatment Centers of NY and NJ we carry the latest selection of designer frames, prescription eyeglasses and eyewear accessories.

Eye Doctor & Optical Store

If someone on your gift list wears glasses, below are 5 gift ideas to inspire you:

1. Gift Card

You can’t go wrong with a Dry Eye Treatment Centers of NY and NJ gift card. Investing in a loved one’s vision goes beyond just providing clear vision. It shows them that you’re thinking of them and care about their health.

2. A Glasses Case

A quality pair of eyeglasses need to be protected. Buying a nice printed or colored eyeglass case allows people to keep their glasses protected in style. There are thousands of cases to choose from. A hard case is usually the best choice, as it delivers a higher level of protection. Consider your friend or loved one’s style preferences when shopping for the perfect case.

3. Eyeglass Repair Kit

An eyeglass repair kit may not be the most unique holiday gift, but it’s among the most useful gifts to have at home or when traveling. A repair kit usually comes with a microfibre cloth, screwdrivers, tweezers, and more. An eyeglass repair kit can be a lifesaver, especially during holidays and weekends, and for those who are often on the go.

4. NerdWax

Any eyeglass wearer will tell you how annoying it is to have to frequently push up their glasses from the bridge of their nose, or how frustrating those red marks on their nose can be because of their frames.

Nerdwax is a tube of wax that enables glasses to stay in place, all while stopping them from irritating the nose. This simple gift can bring increased comfort to the eyeglasses-wearer, enhancing their quality of life.

5. Cleaning Kit

Because eyeglasses require daily cleaning, an eyeglass cleaning kit is a great gift for those who regularly wear specs. Clean glasses not only offer clearer vision, but they help prevent glare, which enhances safety, particularly while driving. Using a proper cleaning kit also prevents the lenses from scratching and incurring permanent damage. A proper cleaning kit should include lens cleaning solution and at least one microfiber lens cloth.

With the assistance of our team, your gift recipient can choose from a wide selection of eye care products. Contact Dry Eye Treatment Centers of NY and NJ to find out what a gift card can be used towards this holiday season.

3 Reasons to Avoid Buying Cheap Glasses

Best Eye Exam at Dry Eye Treatment Centers of NY and NJ

Best Eye Exam at Dry Eye Treatment Centers of NY and NJ

Tempting as it may be to buy your prescription glasses on the cheap, doing so can waste your money and endanger your eye health in the long run. Here are 3 reasons to avoid buying cheap glasses:

Poor Vision Correction

If your prescription is complicated, online retailers may not be able to produce the lenses needed to match your prescription. And prescription glasses that don’t match your vision requirements can cause more harm than good. It can lead to headaches, eye strain, and subpar vision, making everyday tasks like reading, working on a computer, and driving difficult.

Incorrect Fit

Purchasing eyewear from online retailers is often problematic as you aren’t being fitted by an actual person, and online face shape guides and measurements are notoriously inaccurate. In contrast, eye doctors and their qualified staff work face-to-face to take exact measurements to ensure that your glasses fit you perfectly, offering optimal comfort and clarity in your daily life. Moreover, any adjustments you may require can be done directly at the eye doctor’s office.

Poor UV Protection

When purchasing sunglasses, it’s important not to settle on a cheaper pair. While cheaper sunglasses may look and feel like luxury quality sunglasses, they don’t always offer the same level of protection. Protecting your eyes from UV rays is critical to protecting you from sight-robbing diseases, such as macular degeneration.

People commonly (and mistakenly) believe that the darker the lenses, the higher the level of protection from UV rays. Sunglasses labeled “polarized” and “100% UV protected” may still allow blue light and other harmful violet light to penetrate through the lenses. This is why it’s important to speak with your eye doctor to learn more about which lenses offer the best protection for your lifestyle needs.

So schedule an eye exam with Dr. Alan B. Schlussel at Dry Eye Treatment Centers of NY and NJ today and find the perfect pair for you!

Thanksgiving – A Time to Give Gratitude for Sight

The Importance of Eye Care - Dry Eye Treatment Centers of NY and NJ

As Thanksgiving approaches we are reminded to give thanks and show gratitude for the wonderful things and people we have in our lives. As you look around you this Thanksgiving, be thankful for the gift of sight.

We should never take our ability to see clearly for granted. The best way to protect vision is to schedule regular eye exams.

The Importance of Eye Care – Dry Eye Treatment Centers of NY and NJ

Protecting your eyes should be at the top of your health priority list. That’s because 75% of visual impairment is preventable — if detected and treated early enough.

Some of the damage caused by eye disorders like glaucoma, cataracts, diabetic retinopathy, and macular degeneration can be prevented if the conditions are discovered and treated early on; but they can cause irreversible damage and even blindness if they go undiagnosed and untreated. By taking preventative measures and receiving treatment for your eye and vision problems before they become advanced, the greater your chance of maintaining clear vision and eye health.

One way to protect your eyes: Wear sunglasses, even in the winter. Sunglasses help prevent exposure to UV rays that can cause eye damage and cataracts. Make sure your sunglasses have a UV coating and the correct tinting. If you plan to wear your sunglasses in or around water or out in the snow, a polarized lens is recommended. This way your eyes are fully protected.

This Thanksgiving, count your blessings and be thankful for the gift of sight by taking care of your eyes. Get your eyes examined annually, and contact your eye doctor if you believe your vision has changed in any way.

Homemade Pumpkin Pie with Caramelized Walnuts

One of the best sources of vitamin A happens to be pumpkin and pumpkin pie is a delicious eye-healthy dessert. It’s a fact that 1 cup of cooked, mashed pumpkin contains about 200 percent of the recommended daily intake of Vitamin A. Vitamin A provides nourishment and protection to the eye’s macula, lens, and cornea and often improves night vision.

Try this eye-healthy pumpkin pie with caramelized walnuts. Enjoy vision healthy foods this Thanksgiving.

This Thanksgiving, count your blessings and be thankful for the gift of sight by taking care of your eyes. Get your eyes examined annually, and contact your eye doctor if you believe your vision has changed in any way.

During COVID times, taking care of our health is more important than ever. Dry Eye Treatment Centers of NY and NJ understands the importance of healthy vision. We want you to be able to experience life to its fullest. Book an appointment today

Resource – Homemade Pumpkin Pie with Caramelized Walnuts

Are Eye Problems More Common in Women Than Men?

three happy girls outdoors | Eye Exam Eye Care Vison Health

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Being a Woman Increases The Chances of Developing Eye Problems

When it comes to eye health and vision, men and women aren’t created equal. It might surprise you to learn that, worldwide, two-thirds of all cases of blindness and visual impairment occur in women.

Read on to learn why being a woman increases the chances of developing eye problems, and how regular visits to your eye doctor can help.

Longer Life Expectancy

Women live about 5 years longer than men on average. Moreover, women tend to remain healthier longer than their male counterparts. According to the World Health Organization, the average woman can expect to live a full 70 years before experiencing a major disease or injury, compared to 67 healthy years for a man.

But a woman’s increased life expectancy has significant implications when it comes to her eye health and vision. Age is a major risk factor for conditions and diseases like glaucoma, cataracts, macular degeneration, diabetic retinopathy, and dry eye syndrome.

The longer a woman lives, the more likely that she will develop a serious eye condition or disease.

Hormones

Women experience a remarkable amount of hormonal fluctuation throughout their lifespan. Puberty, pregnancy, and menopause all cause surges of estrogen, which can affect vision. Taking birth control pills also can cause visual or ocular symptoms, due to the varying levels of progesterone and estrogen.

Fluctuating estrogen levels can result in dry eye syndrome, which causes uncomfortable symptoms like red, itchy, watery eyes and, if untreated, possibly eye damage. Some women also experience blurred vision during estrogen surges. This is common during pregnancy but vision tends to normalize shortly after birth.

Medications

In almost every society around the world, women take more medication than their male counterparts. This includes both prescription and over-the-counter medications. What many don’t know is that several of these medications can pose significant risks to your eye health and vision, if taken in high dose and over an extended period of time.

Some medications that can affect your eyes include corticosteroids, antihistamines, antimalarials, and antipsychotic and antidepressant medications. Always consult your doctor before taking any prescription or nonprescription medications.

Autoimmune disorders

An autoimmune disease occurs when the body’s own immune system backfires and attacks the body’s own tissue. While the exact reason is still unclear, it is well documented that women have far more autoimmune diseases than men.

According to The National Institutes of Health, 75% of people living with an autoimmune disease are female. Some common autoimmune disorders that impact eye health include rheumatoid arthritis, Sjorgen’s syndrome, multiple sclerosis, lupus, and Graves’ disease (hyperthyroidism). These can cause symptoms like dry and red eyes, foreign-body sensation, pain, changes in vision, and sometimes vision loss.

What Can Women Do To Preserve Their Eye Health?

Whether you are male or female, taking a preventative approach to eye care is the best way to preserve your vision.

Eat a healthy diet rich in vitamins A, C, E, Omega-3’s, and zinc to support eye health. Quit or reduce smoking if you haven’t already. Also, limit your alcohol intake.

In addition to healthy lifestyle choices, a key factor in minimizing your risk of eye disease is seeing your eye doctor regularly.

Having frequent comprehensive eye exams allows your eye doctor to screen your eyes for early signs of disease. By detecting eye disease early, you’ll increase your chances of receiving effective treatment and preserving your vision.

Dry Eye Treatment Centers of NY and NJ optometrists in NYC, New York provide expert eye exams and quality eye cae services.

Call to schedule your comprehensive eye exam today.

REFERENCES

Women are at Higher Risk for Eye Disease than Men

5 Reasons Why Women are at Higher Risk of Eye Disease

WHAT MAKES WOMEN MORE SUSCEPTIBLE TO EYE DISEASES

Ocular Manifestations of Autoimmune Disease

Dr. Alan Schlussel