Dry Eyes FAQs - Royal Oak Optometry - Optometrists in Victoria, BC, Canada
Do I need a referral for a Dry Eye Consultation?
No, but you will need to have had an eye exam within the last two years. If you have not had an eye exam within the last two years please book an eye exam with Royal Oak Optometry.
What is the difference between a Dry Eye evaluation appointment and an eye exam?
Eye exams are a routine examination where an optometrist measures your prescription for corrective lenses, and checks for diseases. However, a dry eye evaluation focuses only on dry eyes.
Is dry eye treatment covered by extended health plans?
Individual insurance policies vary; therefore you will need to check with your insurance provider to learn which treatments may be covered under your plan.
What is collagen?
Collagen is a protein that helps keep the skin, bones, and other tissues in our bodies strong and flexible. This protein is a major component of the cornea, the clear outer layer of the eye that helps keep your eyes moist and lubricated. However, humans produce less collagen as we age, and there is some evidence that increased collagen production helps with dry eye symptoms.
What are the Meibomian glands?
Meibomian glands are located around your eyelids and secrete healthy oils into your tear film. These oils help lubricate your eye and prevent your tears from evaporating. When these glands become blocked, the quality of your tears changes. This change can cause a dry, uncomfortable, watery, sticky, or gritty feeling.
What causes Meibomian gland dysfunction (MGD)?
Some factors that contribute to Meibomian gland dysfunction include:

  • Age: Meibomian gland dysfunction is more common as people get older.
  • Hormones: Hormones can cause an imbalance of sebum (a natural, oily substance produced in the skin.) This can cause blockages in the Meibomian glands.
  • Family history: Some people’s genetics make them more susceptible to Meibomian gland dysfunction.
  • Makeup use: Some studies have shown that people who use waterproof mascara, or makeup which contains petroleum jelly, are more likely to suffer from Meibomian gland dysfunction.
  • Contact lens wear: While there isn’t a definitive link between contact lenses and Meibomian gland dysfunction, some studies suggest that contact lens use may cause MGD.
  • Autoimmune disease:Autoimmune disease may play a role in the development of MGD by causing inflammation and damage to the glands. Additionally, autoimmune disease may contribute to dry eye disease in other ways beyond MGD.
What is a meibographer?
A meibographer is a device that enables doctors to assess your tear film by taking images that measure the thickness of the lipid component (a fatty substance that keeps the eye moist and protected), and measures the quantity and quality of lipids being released from your glands
What are the components of tears?
Tears consist of water, oil, and mucus. The water in tears comes from the blood vessels in the eye. The oil in tears comes from the Meibomian glands. The mucus in tears comes from the goblet cells.
How are tears produced?
The human body produces tears in the lacrimal gland, which is located under the upper eyelid. The lacrimal gland produces a clear fluid that flows over the surface of the eye. The tears then travel down the tear duct and into the nose.
What is the SPEED Questionnaire for Dry Eyes?
The SPEED Dry Eye Questionnaire is a questionnaire that measures the severity of dry eyes. It is a self-reported questionnaire that measures the patient’s symptoms, including pain, decreased vision, sensitivity to light, and dryness. The questionnaire is also designed to measure the patient’s quality of life, including activities that are difficult because of dry eyes, such as driving, reading and working.

Please fill out the SPEED questionnaire in our office.

Can persons with very advanced glaucoma use your dry eye services?
Those with advanced glaucoma can use our dry eye services. Glaucoma, and also its treatment, are often accompanied by dry eyes as a condition. We recommend a dry eye evaluation appointment to learn your options before committing to any treatment plan. Please visit our Book a Dry Eyes Consultation page.