Impact of Dry Eye Syndrome in a Modern Society

A study conducted by the Tear Film and Ocular Society (TFOS) shows that dry eye affects between 5 to 50% depending on geographic location and demographic distribution https://plano.co/eye-health/other-eye-conditions/dry-eye/. Dry eye costs the healthcare sector billions of dollars each year. On a micro view, dry eye syndrome causes loss in productivity among employees and general activities at work. The negative effects of dry eye syndrome on the quality of life prompted an in-depth analysis of dry eye syndrome.

What is dry eye syndrome?

Dry eye syndrome is an ocular defect characterized by tear deficiency and ocular surface inflammation. There are two types of dry eye, namely aqueous deficient dry eye and evaporative dry eye.

Aqueous deficient dry eye reduces production of the aqueous component of tears. The diminished production is due to malfunctioning lacrimal glands.

Evaporative dry eye is a disorder where the dysfunction of meibomian glands results in insufficient production of the oil layer on the tear film. The oil layer prevents excessive tear evaporation. Dry eye costs the healthcare sector billions of dollars each year. On a micro view, dry eye syndrome causes loss in productivity among employees

Causes of dry eye?

Dry eye causes range from physiological to environmental conditions. Age-related illnesses also cause dry eyes. The most common causes of dry eye include:

· Secondary smoking

· Previous eye surgery

· Blue screen strain

· Long term contact lenses wear

· Allergies

· Diabetes

· Meibomian gland dysfunction

Some systemic therapy procedures and medications also cause dry eyes. Dry eye cannot be traced to one individual because, therefore, it follows that eye syndrome management is not a one size fits all approach.

Impact of Dry Eye Syndrome in a Modern Society 2

How dry eye affects different aspects of your life

Office

A typical office setup has specific screens and non-adjustable lighting and draft systems. Prolonged use of the glaring screens causes digital eye strain, which descends into dry eye syndrome over time. A study by Clayton Blehm et al. found that 20% of computer users experience transient myopia at the end of the working day.

Blue screen light does not necessarily cause serious eye disorders instantly. However, the digital eye strain causes eye discomfort and eye redness which causes a decrease in visual performance at the office.

Office errors due to lowered vision cause massive losses in companies, and you can find yourself at loggerheads with the management. Dry eye syndrome generally lowers productivity in the workplace. It is not surprising that individuals with dry eye syndrome have lower employment rates than individuals with healthy eyes.

Social effects

Have you ever noticed someone giving a speech, and it seems they are crying? That is dry eye syndrome. Dry eye syndrome may evoke unintended emotions and cause massive misunderstandings in public situations.

Financial effect

Managing dry eyes is not cheap. You have to constantly buy breakthrough eye drops and newer pills to manage discomfort. Artificial tears are a wonderful alternative, but they are not cheap either. If you don’t have good eye insurance, you may find the cost overwhelming. However, dry eye syndrome is manageable.

Dry eye management

You can manage environmental factors that aggravate dry eyes, such as dry surroundings in the workplace and exposure to cigarette smoke. Limit your exposure to screen or use the 20-20-20 rule to prevent myopia. The 20-20-20 rule states that after every 20 minutes, you should look at something other than your screen 20 feet away for at least 20 seconds. Dry eye syndrome generally lowers productivity in the workplace. It is not surprising that individuals with dry eye syndrome have lower employment rates than individuals with healthy eyes.

Takeaway

Dry eye syndrome has multispectral effects. However, you can manage some of the environmental factors that make you prone to developing dry eyes. Always consult your optometrist when you feel any eye discomfort.