Understanding Severe Dry Eye

Anyone can develop dry eyes, but severe cases, or even dry eye disease, are a more complicated issue.

Tears, the fluid that coats our eyes, lubricates eye movement, removes debris, and keeps our eyes moisturised.

Dehydration, a dry environment, wind, and other factors can all cause dry eyes in people. When dry eye disease persists for a long time and is unresponsive to conventional treatments, it is deemed severe.

What is severe dry eye?

There is no recognised diagnosis for severe dry eye. The condition known as dry eye disease (DED), which is severe and persistent, is not the same as occasional dry eyes.

A malfunction in one of the systems that makes or excretes tears occurs when you have dry eye illness. The dryness is brought on by either an obstruction in the flow of tears or a lack of tear production.

What are the symptoms of severe dry eye?

You have probably had dry eyes when it's windy outside, when you're allergic to anything, or even when you're just weary. Dry eye symptoms can include:
  • a scratchy feeling
  • redness
  • sensitivity to light
  • blurred vision
  • the sensation that there is something in your eye
Serious vision issues, pain, or the inability to cry at all can result from more severe cases of chronic dry eye or dry eye syndrome.

How is severe dry eye diagnosed?

During a standard eye exam, your medical team will start diagnosing your eye issue; typically, this will involve using lights and magnification.

A vision test may also be part of this examination, but the primary focus will be on examining the anatomy and structure of your eye and eyelid.

You might be asked to blink or move your eyes in different directions. It's also possible to quantify and examine the tear film.

Usually, a medical practitioner will only officially diagnose dry eye illness if they find a structural or functional issue with the way your eyes produce and use tears.

Some tests that examine the amount of tears you produce and the way your eyes use them include:
  • tear break-up time (TBUT)
  • slit lamp test
  • Schirmer’s test

What’s the treatment for severe dry eye?

The underlying reason for your dry eyes will determine how to cure them. If your dry eye is being caused by environmental causes such as wind, dust, or irritants, covering your eyes when you are outside or avoiding these irritants will help.

Treatments for dry eyes that result from medication side effects, long-term health conditions including Sjögren syndrome, or problems producing enough tears include:
  • lubricating eye drops, gels, or ointments available over the counter
  • pharmaceutical drugs that stimulate the formation of tears, such as lifitegrast (Xiidra) or cyclosporine (Restasis)
  • Placement of the tear duct plug (punctal plug)
  • surgery aimed at addressing the tear duct or eyelid structure

What are the complications of severe dry eye?

Untreated dry eyes can lead to inflammation as well as harm to the outer layer of the eye and, in rare cases, irreversible loss or impairment of eyesight. Severe dry eyes can cause abrasions to form on the cornea, the outer layer of the eye.

Some individuals with these symptoms report feeling depressed as a result of their symptoms, in addition to having severe discomfort.

What are the risk factors for severe dry eye?

While dry eye can affect anyone occasionally, certain people are more susceptible to more severe or chronic forms of the problem.

The following are risk factors for severe dry eye problems:
  • being over 50 years old
  • being assigned female at birth
  • looking at screens for a long time
  • using certain medications
  • having had eye surgeries
  • wearing contact lens
  • certain autoimmune conditions
  • experiencing hormonal changes
  • having a vitamin A deficiency
  • having an omega-3 deficiency

What’s the outlook for people with severe dry eye? 

Although millions of Americans suffer from dry eye every year, the majority of them can cope with the condition. To prevent flare-ups and serious consequences, you might need to wear eye protection, stay away from triggers, or use eye drops regularly. That being said, there are numerous ways to address ocular dryness.

Treatment is possible but slightly more difficult if your dry eye symptoms are brought on by an issue with your tear ducts, tear composition, or glands surrounding your eyes.

In severe cases, laser therapy or surgery may be recommended by your healthcare team to address structural and functional issues in your eyes that are contributing to your dry eye symptoms.

Can you prevent severe dry eye?

Not all types of dry eyes are preventable. To get relief from your dry eye, it is necessary to treat any underlying conditions that may be the cause, such as systemic disease or structural problems.

However, there are some measures you may take to help avoid dryness and irritation in more widespread kinds of dry eye. Among them are:
  • drinking plenty of water
  • treating allergies
  • getting plenty of sleep
  • using a humidifier
  • protecting your eyes from wind and irritants
  • limiting your screen time


Many people have the condition of dry eyes. In many circumstances, lubricating eye drops help relieve dry eye symptoms, but there's a chance that something else is causing your tears or the production of tears. When dry eye persists for a long time and doesn't improve with standard treatments, it's deemed severe.

Make an appointment for an eye exam to rule out more serious conditions like tear duct dysfunction if your dry eye isn't improving despite your efforts to remain hydrated, shield your eyes, and use over-the-counter remedies.


Can anything be done for severe dry eyes?

There are highly effective prescription drops, as well as some more high-tech solutions

Is severe dry eyes common?

It's not usually serious

Do dry eyes ever heal?

It doesn't have a cure

Can Ayurveda cure dry eyes?

A suitable Vata Samana treatment is the preferred line of treatment for Dry Eyes

Post a Comment