So You've Never Heard of Dry Eye Syndrome?
You're not alone. It is estimated that 89% of the population have not heard of Dry Eye Syndrome, although it is the most common of all eye problems. Most people assume that gritty, red, watery eyes are just part of life. They are amazed that they can actually do something about it.
How Many People Have Dry Eye Syndrome?
Dry Eye Syndrome statistics are staggering and on the rise. In fact, they have almost doubled in the last seven years! According to the 1997 EagleVision-Yankelovich poll/survey, one out of five or 59 million Americans may be suffering from Dry Eye Syndrome.
Data on file **1997 EagleVision Yankelovich Partners Survey
Who's at risk for Dry Eye?
There are certain factors that contribute to Dry Eye Syndrome, although both men and women of any age may experience it.
Aging: Advancing age is the single most important risk factor for Dry
Eye. Dry Eye Syndrome affects 75% of the population over the
age of sixty-five years.
Women: Hormonal changes brought on by pregnancy, lactation,
oral contraceptives, menstruation, and post-menopause
can cause Dry Eye conditions.
Disease: Several diseases result in side affects of Dry Eye Syndrome:
Rheumatoid Arthritis, Diabetes, Thyroid Abnormalities, Asthma, Cataracts, Glaucoma,
Medication: Certain medications can decrease the body's ability to produce lubricating tears:
Antidepressants, decongestants, antihistamines, blood pressure medication,
oral contraceptives, diuretics, ulcer medication, tranquilizers, beta blockers.
Contact Lenses: Dry Eye is the leading cause of contact lens discomfort or intolerance.
Soft contacts, in particular, rapidly evaporate the tears from the eye, causing irritation, protein
deposits, infection, and pain.
Environmental Conditions: Exposure to smoke, fluorescent lights, air pollution, wind, heat,
air conditioning, and dry climates can increase tear evaporation.
Computer Users: Computer users spend hours staring at their terminal ignoring their normal
blinking process, which is a vital function of tear production.
Refractive Surgery: Candidates considering refractive surgery (i.e. RK, PRK, LASIK, LTK)
should consult their Eye Care Professional regarding any dry eye risks associated with the