What Is Dry Eye Syndrome? (DES)
Dry eye syndrome occurs when tear production and drainage are not in balance. People with dry eyes either do not produce enough tears or their tears are of poor quality. The result? Unpleasant symptoms, including itching, burning, redness, watery eyes, excessive tearing—and even eye pain. Dry eye syndrome can also increase your risk for more serious eye problems like corneal ulcers.
Without treatment or proper medication, DES can worsen over time.
What Causes Dry Eyes?
While over 80% of dry eye cases are due to blocked oil glands in the eyelids — a condition called meibomian gland dysfunction or evaporative dry eye — other factors can also cause this syndrome. These include:
Gender – the majority of dry eye sufferers are women. This tends to be caused by hormonal changes, whether through the use of contraceptives, pregnancy or menopause.
Age – there’s a higher prevalence of DES in those over 50 years of age
Environment – dry wind, dry air and dry climates can evaporate the tears. Home and car heaters, air conditioners, fans and hair dryers also cause tears to evaporate.
Medication – these include antidepressants, decongestants and blood pressure medications.
Auto-immune disorders – Sjogren’s disease and arthritis, among others.
How Do I Know If I Have Dry Eye Syndrome?
Do any of these symptoms seem familiar?
- Gritty, itchy, or stinging eyes
- Excessive tearing and discharge
- Eyes that feel tired or dry
- Increased light sensitivity
- Regularly using eye drops
- Discomfort that worsens as the day progresses
If so, you may have dry eye syndrome. Take our dry eye quiz to find out!
We offer the latest Diagnostic and treatment for Dry Eye
The Dry Eye Center Of NY & NJ uses the latest diagnostic equipment and emerging, FDA approved technology to quickly and accurately pinpoint and treat the root cause of your dry eye problem. We don’t just throw any old drops at you either.
We provide custom treatment plans designed to maximize the relief of your dry eye symptoms AND treat the underlying cause of your discomfort.
The Dry Eye Treatment Center of NY & NJ is now offering the Marco Equinox Low Level Light Therapy (LLLT), the latest in dry eye treatment technology.
Developed by NASA, LLLT has proven effective at treating dry eye disease. LLLT uses specially designed LED lights to gently warm up the eyelids, causing the meibomian glands to unclog and release oils.
- Safe, non-invasive procedure
- 15 minutes per session
- No recovery time needed
- No side effects or discomfort
- Safe for adults and children
LipiFlow® Dry Eye Treatment
LipiFlow® is one of the most advanced and effective doctor-led procedures for Meibomian Gland Dysfunction (MGD), a common eye condition and the most prevalent root cause of severe Dry Eye Syndrome. MGD can be caused by a number of factors, such as age, ethnicity, corrective lens use, high cholesterol, bacterial infection, and even certain medications. MGD can range from being relatively minor nuisance to completely debilitating to your quality of life.
Dry eye is a condition with a variety of causes. This common and irritating syndrome occurs when your body does not produce enough lubricating tears or changes in your body decrease the quality of your tear composition.
One cause of dry eye is Meibomian Gland Dysfunction (MGD), defined as a blockage or problem with the meibomian glands. MGD can drastically reduce the amount of lipids (oil) in your tears, which allows tears to evaporate too rapidly. Statistics estimate that 86% of all dry eye patients are affected by a problem with their meibomian glands.
Because every case of dry eye is unique, you need an experienced specialist to evaluate your condition, determine the cause and recommend the best treatment. With offices in Manhattan (NYC) and West Orange, NJ, Dr. Alan Schlussel is your leading dry eye doctor. Why suffer? For relief from your painful symptoms, schedule an appointment at the Dry Eye Treatment Center of NY & NJ
What Others Are Saying About Us
My dry eye was terrible and I felt desperate, so I did some research and learned about IPL. I set up an appointment with Dr. Schlussel to be evaluated for IPL treatment (which is available in his NJ office). I had results after just the first IPL treatment session and I am so grateful for the difference that it made - it really improved my overall quality of life. Dr. Schlussel cares that his patients have good results with dry eye and his passion really shows in the outcomes. His office is also very sweet and caring. Thank you!!!
Lasting & Effective Dry Eye Treatment
Our dry eye treatment program is individualized to each patient according to the root cause.
We aim to restore or maintain the normal amount of tears in the eye to minimize dryness and discomfort. Book a consultation with one of our eye doctors, who can prescribe a customized treatment plan to keep your eyes healthy and comfortable all day, every day.
Do You Have More Questions About Dry Eyes? | FAQ
Is there a cure for dry eye syndrome?
Unfortunately, there is no permanent cure for dry eye syndrome. However, there are a number of effective ways to prevent or treat symptoms. Make an appointment today with our trusted optometrists in NYC for evaluation and personalized treatment options.
What is the main cause of dry eye syndrome?
Dry eye syndrome commonly occurs because your eyes are not producing enough tears, or the tears being produced don’t contain the proper components to keep the eyes hydrated. An eye doctor can perform tests to determine what is causing your dry eyes, and how to treat the symptoms.
How do I prevent dry eye symptoms?
Many factors including allergies, hormones and the weather can cause dry eye symptoms such as dry, red, itchy and gritty-feeling eyes. Tips to prevent these symptoms include:
- Eating foods high in omega-3 fatty acids, which help produce oils in your tears that slow evaporation.
- Following the ”20-20-20 rule” when working on computers or screens. This means looking away from the screen every 20 minutes, for 20 seconds, at something at least 20 feet away, to give your eyes a break from the strain of working on digital screens.
- Position air vents, fans and heaters so that they don’t blow directly into your eyes, drying them out.
Can dry eye syndrome cause blindness?
Yes. In extreme circumstances, dry eyes can result in scratches on the eye that leaves scars on the cornea. This scarring can make it difficult for the eye to focus incoming light, obscuring vision. This may eventually result in permanent vision damage or blindness if not treated properly.