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The causes of dry eye are various. If you have symptoms on the ocular surface, it is essential to consult an ophthalmologist who is the only person who can make the diagnosis by using specific tests and who will prescribe the best treatment. If you use eye drops for other eye diseases, your doctor will ensure that they contain no products that can worsen dry eye, such as preservatives.
Dry eye treatment is based on eyelid hygiene and eye drops to lubricate and moisturize the ocular surface. Research is active in this field and new effective products are available. In particular, THEALOSE® (medical device) contains hyaluronic acid, a lubricant and trehalose, a naturally moisturizing and protective molecule. Trehalose, known since the 19th century, is present in some plants in desert areas and allows them to withstand long periods of drought. Several clinical studies have shown that THEALOSE® is at least as effective, if not more so, than any other eye drops usually used in dry eye[i],[ii],[iii].
A few simple reflexes should be adopted:
It all depends on the degree of dry eye disease: if inflammation is very intense with on-going and bothersome symptoms, contact lenses may be contraindicated and you won’t be able to tolerate them. In the case of moderate dry eye, you can try to wear lenses under close medical surveillance. It may be necessary to change the model of lens until you find one that is well tolerated6. Finally, wearing lenses may be limited to a few hours per day, alternating with your glasses.
Makeup can be used, preferably with products for sensitive eyes that we usually find in pharmacies or drugstores, while of course simultaneously using your moisturizing eye drops. Avoid applying makeup on the edge of the eyelids in order to avoid direct contact with the surface of the eye, and only use mascara on the eyelashes and eye shadow or pencil on the skin beyond the lash line.
If you cannot tolerate make-up for more than a few hours, it should be reserved for special occasions. If even a few hours with makeup aggravates your symptoms, you may unfortunately have to give it up.
In the event of symptoms affecting the eyes, it is always wise to consult an ophthalmologist. In the case of dry eye, only the ophthalmologist can perform some specific tests to make a diagnosis and prescribe appropriate treatment. Regular consultations are useful to monitor the evolution of your dry eye and adjust treatments. If you have other eye diseases involving the use of eye drops, your ophthalmologist will ensure they are preservative-free in order to not exacerbate your dry eye.
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[i] EC Marking file THEALOZ DUO – Laboratoires Théa
[ii] [ii] Schmidl D et al. Tear film thickness after treatment with artificial tears in patients with moderate dry eye disease. Cornea. 2015, 34 (4) : 421-425
[iii] Matsuo T. Trehalose versus hyaluronane or cellulose in eyedrops for the treatment of dry eye. Jpn J Ophthalmol. 2004 ; 48 : 321-327