Dry Eye Treatment

Dry eye occurs when the eye does not produce tears properly, or when the tears are not of the correct consistency and evaporate too quickly. In addition, inflammation of the surface of the eye may occur along with dry eye. If left untreated, this condition can lead to pain, ulcers, or scars on the cornea, and some loss of vision. However, permanent loss of vision from dry eye is uncommon.

Dry eye can make it more difficult to perform some activities, such as using a computer or reading for an extended period of time, and it can decrease tolerance for dry environments, such as the air inside an airplane.

Other names for dry eye include dry eye syndrome, keratoconjunctivitis sicca (KCS), dysfunctional tear syndrome, lacrimal keratoconjunctivitis, evaporative tear deficiency, aqueous tear deficiency, and LASIK-induced neurotrophic epitheliopathy (LNE).

What are the types of dry eye?

1) Aqueous tear-deficient dry eye is a disorder in which the lacrimal glands fail to produce enough of the watery component of tears to maintain a healthy eye surface.

2) Evaporative dry eye may result from inflammation of the meibomian glands, also located in the eyelids. These glands make the lipid or oily part of tears that slows evaporation and keeps the tears stable.

Dry eye can be associated with:

  • inflammation of the surface of the eye, the lacrimal gland, or the conjunctiva;
  • any disease process that alters the components of the tears;
  • an increase in the surface of the eye, as in thyroid disease when the eye protrudes forward;
  • cosmetic surgery, if the eyelids are opened too widely.

What are the symptoms of dry eye?

  • Dry eye symptoms may include any of the following:
  • stinging or burning of the eye;
  • a sandy or gritty feeling as if something is in the eye;
  • episodes of excess tears following very dry eye periods;
  • a stringy discharge from the eye;
  • pain and redness of the eye;
  • episodes of blurred vision;
  • heavy eyelids;
  • inability to cry when emotionally stressed;
  • uncomfortable contact lenses;
  • decreased tolerance of reading, working on the computer, or any activity that requires sustained visual attention;
  • eye fatigue.

Who is likely to develop dry eye?

Elderly people frequently experience dryness of the eyes, but dry eye can occur at any age. Nearly five million Americans 50 years of age and older are estimated to have dry eye. Of these, more than three million are women and more than one and a half million are men. Tens of millions more have less severe symptoms. Dry eye is more common after menopause. Women who experience menopause prematurely are more likely to have eye surface damage from dry eye.

The Energetic Vision Dry Eye Protocol

In Chinese medical theory the ability of the eyes to see things and to distinguish colors is one of nature’s true miracles. Being an extremely important part of the human body’s ability to relate to the world, the eyes have a close relationship with the Qi, blood, fluids, vessels and all organ systems.  All of these connections allow the Qi to flow upward from the organs to allow the eyes to see.  Within Chinese medical theory the function of sight is completely attributed to the healthy function of the internal organs.  Any type of dysfunction of the related organs will restrict the Essential Qi from reaching the eyes resulting in declining vision.  For example, there are 6 possible patterns and treatment principles for degenerative vision loss in the Liver organ alone and well over 100 different possibilities in the entire organ system.  This is why at Energetic Vision we spend an hour with you before we begin treatment to understand what vessels are affected and to determine a course of therapy that is based on your individual imbalances.

The Energetic Vision Dry Eye protocol is a proactive, comprehensive treatment program for enhancing and managing vision and overall health. It is applicable for most types of retinal disease as well as glaucoma and iritis (uveitis).  The standard beginning protocol is intensive and involves 10 total acupuncture treatments that are to be completed within a one week timeframe. Each acupuncture session lasts about 30 minutes and clients usually do 2-3 treatments per day with an hour in-between.

Included with your treatment are 2 sets of eye tests that help us document your results along the way. We first test at your intake session and again after ten sessions. The eye tests performed in the clinic include: contrast sensitivity, color field, near and far acuity and Amsler grid. It is required that you have a thorough eye exam from your ophthalmologist within three months prior to starting the treatments.  This report and your health history are to be submitted one week prior to the start of treatments.

Within the Dry Eye protocol, we will take an in depth look at many likely factors that can influence vision including: overall health, nutrition, supplements, household toxins, personal care products, stress, dental history, emotions and exercise. Addressing these issues is essential to helping the acupuncture succeed.  Depending on the severity of your eye condition, follow-up treatments are mandatory to maintain vision gains. Some clients may choose to do monthly maintenance sessions after their first two sessions, while others may visit the clinic every quarter or even annually. Each person responds differently and will require a unique, flexible continuing care plan. 

Acupuncture cannot cure your eye disease but in most cases it can substantially improve it and your quality of life. There are four stages of health for the nerve cells in the retina and optic nerve: 1. Normal or healthy; 2. Dormant; 3. Damaged or sick and 4. Death.  The treatment protocol attempts to stimulate and wake up the dormant cells and restore them to function while helping to heal and rejuvenate the damaged/sick cells.  It also seems to protect the healthy cells from further deterioration.  This treatment does not have a 100{aab5c1fa31afb55ba701889953dee8647b2d9d1532bf98a4d9a287d7b1658a1a} success rate but 80{aab5c1fa31afb55ba701889953dee8647b2d9d1532bf98a4d9a287d7b1658a1a} of patients report positive results.

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