What Is Dry Eye?

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Understanding Your Dry Eyes

Dry eye is common, and several factors can cause this condition. Regardless of why your eyes are dry, the results are the same: uncomfortable, irritated eyes. Fortunately, relief is available.

Visit one of our locations and experience a comprehensive evaluation of your eyes and tear film. Our team assesses all aspects of your eye health to identify the root cause of your symptoms and provide a treatment plan. 

Visit one of our locations, and we can help diagnose and treat dry eye. 

Understand the Basics of Dry Eye 

Dry eye is an often chronic condition where your tears cannot effectively lubricate your eyes, leading to several irritating symptoms. Patients with dry eyes may struggle with light sensitivity, watery eyes, foreign object sensations, or burning, stinging, and scratching sensations in the eyes. 

While several factors can affect dry eye, this condition develops from issues with your tear film

Your tears have 3 main ingredients:

  • The lipid layer features an oily substance secreted from the meibomian glands. This layer helps prevent your tears from evaporating too quickly.
  • The aqueous layer is the water-like component of your tears. This layer is the main ingredient in your tears and helps support the other 2 layers, keep the eyes wet, and nourish them. 
  • The mucous layer coats the cornea. It helps your tears distribute themselves evenly across the surface of your eye.

When complications arise in the tear film, it can lead to dry, irritated eyes. 

What Causes Dry Eye? 

Dry eyes happen because of tear film dysfunction. Essentially, your tears cannot keep your eyes lubricated and comfortable. Dry eyes have 2 root causes: insufficient tear volume or poor-quality tears.

Aqueous tear-deficient dry eye can come from issues in other parts of your body, but it occurs when your tears lack moisture. It can develop when your lacrimal glands fail to produce enough tears.

Several conditions can lead to decreased tear production, including:

Evaporative dry eye (EDE) occurs when your tears evaporate too quickly. It usually happens when there is a blockage in the oil glands, upsetting your eye’s lipid layer.

Similar to the effects of aqueous tear-deficient dry eye, your eyes may feel inflamed and irritated with evaporative dry eye. Your optometrist can accurately diagnose this condition and recommend a suitable treatment plan. If you have EDE, there’s a lot we can do in-office to help you retain moisture from your natural tear level.

Diagnosing Dry Eye

Medical diagnostic tests help us determine the type of dry eye you’re experiencing and the severity of your condition. We test for dry eye by examining the tear film and assessing its quality. 

Some tests we employ include:

Relieve Your Dry Eye Symptoms

Dry eye is a common condition many patients experience, leading to irritating and uncomfortable symptoms. Thankfully, this condition is treatable, and we can help relieve your symptoms. Our team can diagnose and treat dry eye at its source, helping you enjoy comfortable vision. 

Learn more about our available treatments by visiting our dry eye treatments and eye spa pages. 

Visit Our Locations


& Area

Find us at the corner of Langford Parkway and Jacklin Road. We’re across the parking lot from the White Spot.

  • 2968 Jacklin Rd
  • Langford, BC V9B 0A3


& Area

We’re located next to Thrifty Foods just off Beverly Street. If you have any trouble finding us, please give us a call.

  • 2755 Beverly Street, Unit 2
  • Duncan, BC V9L 6X2


& Area

We look forward to helping you achieve your vision goals at our Chemainus location. Find us just off of Maple Lane and Croft Street.

  • 9844 Croft Street, Unit 106
  • Chemainus, BC V0R 1K0

Cobble Hill

& Area

Our Cobble Hill location is just off Cowichan Bay Road on the upper level of Valleyview Centre. If you have any trouble finding us, please give us a call.

  • 1400 Cowichan Bay Rd, Unit 56
  • Cobble Hill, BC V0R 1L3

Lake Cowichan

& Area

We are conveniently located in the plaza off of Stanley Road and Cowichan Lake Road. Find us across from Central Park.

  • 44 Stanley Road
  • Lake Cowichan, BC V0R 2G0

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