Dry Eyes Specialist

Susan Watson, M.D. -  - Board-Certified Ophthalmologist

Watson Dry Eye Center

Susan Watson, M.D.

Board-Certified Ophthalmologist & Dry Eye Disease Specialist located in Raleigh, NC

Most everyone experiences dry, itchy eyes from time to time, but chronic problems with dry eyes can have a widespread impact on your life and affect your vision. At Watson Dry Eye Center, the expert team headed up by Susan Watson, MD, offers comprehensive evaluations and treatments for patients in Raleigh, North Carolina, who suffer from this uncomfortable condition. If you’re struggling with dry eyes, call or use the online scheduling tool to book an appointment.

Dry Eyes Q & A

What is dry eye?

As the name implies, dry eye disease is a condition that leaves your eyes perennially dry, itchy, and scratchy, and can even cause blurry vision. Approximately 80 million people in the United States suffer from some degree of dry eye, making it a very common problem.

There are two main drivers behind dry eyes:

Meibomian gland dysfunction

Your tears are made of three ingredients, which are spread out over the surface of your eye every time you blink:

  • Water to hydrate and nourish your eyes
  • Mucus to help spread your tears
  • Oil to keep your tears from evaporating too quickly

Your meibomian glands are responsible for the protective oil layer, and when they’re obstructed, these glands are unable to produce enough of the much-needed oil.

Blepharitis

Blepharitis is a chronic, inflammatory disease of the eyelids that’s caused by an excess of bacterial debris along your lids and lash lines. Over time, chronic inflammation leads to reduced tear gland performance.

No matter the source of the problem, the bottom line is that you’re left with eyes that aren’t getting the nourishment and hydration they need.

What causes dry eyes?

There are many conditions that lead to dry eyes, chief among them:

  • Age
  • Hormonal changes in women
  • Autoimmune diseases, such as Sjögrens syndrome
  • Rosacea, an inflammatory skin condition
  • Environment, including smoke, irritants, and pollutants
  • Computer screens
  • Allergies
  • Contact lens use or eye surgery 

The best way to find out what is causing your dry eyes is to see the team at Watson Dry Eye Center for a complete analysis.

How do you diagnose and treat dry eyes?

Dr. Watson specializes in dry eyes and offers the most advanced diagnostic and treatment tools available. In fact, Watson Dry Eye Center is a certified tear testing laboratory, certified inflammatory testing laboratory, and a certified ocular allergy testing center. 

To get to the bottom of your problem, the team leaves no stone unturned and uses a number of evaluation techniques, including:

  • Tear film analysis
  • Gland imaging
  • Allergy testing
  • Omega-3 fatty acid analysis

Once they pinpoint the cause of your dry eyes, the team works quickly to find the best solution for your particular situation in order to provide you with relief. While each situation is unique, Dr. Watson turns to a number of effective treatments, including:

  • Dry eye therapies, such as Restasis®, Xiidra®, and TrueTear®
  • Punctal occlusion to slow down drainage
  • BlephEx® to clean your eyelids
  • LipiFlow® for gland dysfunction
  • Intense pulsed light to treat conditions like rosacea
  • TempSure™ Envi to tighten your eyelids

Rest assured, Dr. Watson and her staff have one goal in mind when it comes to choosing your treatment plan: helping you find long-term relief from dry eyes.

If dry eyes are severely affecting your life, call Watson Dry Eye Center, or request an appointment using the online booking tool.