Who Is at Risk for Dry Eye?

Anyone can experience dry eye, though it is more common among women, particularly after menopause. Women who experience other hormonal conditions, such as pregnancy and menstruation, may also have dry eye symptoms.

People who have a condition called Sjögren’s syndrome will usually have dry eye. So will others with similar systemic diseases like lupus, rheumatoid arthritis or some types of thyroid disease. Also, people who take certain over-the-counter and prescription medications can have dry eye due to reduced tear secretion.

People who have had LASIK or other refractive surgery, where their corneas have reduced sensation due to incisions or tissue removal, may also experience dry eye. Also, people who wear contact lenses long term are at risk for developing dry eye.

People who are sensitive to certain climates (such as windy, dry air) or to environmental factors like cigarette smoke or air conditioning may develop dry eye when they are exposed to these conditions.

Because people who work long hours at a computer are less likely to blink often, they are more susceptible to getting dry eye than people who don’t spend a lot of time in front of a computer monitor.

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