MASKS CAUSE SURGE IN CHRONIC EYE DISEASE
14: SPACE COAST LIVING | SPACECOASTLIVING.COM
race play a part. Individuals
over the age of 50 are more
at risk, as are women and
persons of Hispanic or
Asian descent. Contact lens
users — even those with
throwaway types — are
more prone to the problem.
Ditto for people with
autoimmune disorders such
technology doesn’t help.
When we look at these screens, we tend to blink less, which is a bad
thing, since blinking refreshes the ocular surface.
“We are all looking at computer screens and cell phones all day
and now with using a COVID mask a tiny jet stream of air is aimed
directly at your eye every time you breathe. These jet streams make
the simple action of sighing after a long days work a cause of further
evaporative loss.” Dr. Trespalacios said.
Radiation therapy, laser eye surgery, allergies and deficiency of
vitamin A and omega-3 fatty acids are additional dry eye culprits, as is
Florida’s searing heat.
The condition is not only annoying, but also be detrimental to vision.
“Dry eyes can lead to permanent damage and affect your quality of
life,” Dr. Trespalacios said.
For temporary help, Dr. Trespalacios suggests consciously blinking
more often, or resting your eyes by closing them, particularly if video
screens are part of your daily routine.
A comprehensive eye exam can diagnose the condition. At Tres Vision
Group, one of the first Dry Eye Centers in the South East, an experienced
team of doctors of optometry and ophthalmology use the latest
technological therapeutic options for those suffering from dry eye.
While mild symptoms may be kept at bay with over-the-counter
artificial tears, many individuals find that the effectiveness of these
products diminish with usage and that preservatives present in many
of these lead to even further irritation.
Treatment options at Tres
Vision Group include LipiFlow®,
non-invasive technology that
can provide up to 12 months
of relief in a little more than
12 minutes. “Toughing it
out” without treatment is
detrimental, for dry eye can result in a corneal ulcer or conjunctivitis
that can result in partial or complete loss of vision.
“With appropriate and timely care, we can make a difference,”
Dr. Trespalacios said.
For more information, call 321-984-3200 or visit TresVision.com.
Blurry vision, pain, redness, light sensitivity, irritation, tearing,
“grit” in the eyes, foreign body sensation: these are the
symptoms of the newly minted Mask Associated Dry Eye
Syndrome or MADES for short.
Getting teary-eyed would already be a welcome relief for folks
suffering from chronic dry eye, a disease that already affects
millions. Now due to the use of COVID masks their condition is
MADE even more miserable. Even normal non dry eye sufferers can
be edged into a chronic cycle of dryness through mask wearing.
“Of the many issues we treat in our office, dry eye is among the
top,” said ophthalmologist Dr. Rafael Trespalacios of Tres Vision
Group in Melbourne, Merritt Island and Suntree.
A common question is, “If it is just dry eyes why do I not get relief
by just making it wet by adding eye drops?,” or “But my eyes are
The answer to that question is Tears are complicated. Dry eyes is a
misnomer and should actually be referred to as a tear dysfunction
where over 85% of dry eyes is caused by evaporative loss.
According to the Dry Eye Directory group, up to 49 million people
in the United States already suffer from the problem. Age, sex and
321-984-3200 Melbourne | Suntree/Viera | Meritt Island www.TresVision.com