As with all technologies, research and discoveries are constantly changing how we live our lives. Some good, some bad. We are now using digital devices almost constantly throughout the day, exposing our eyes to blue light wavelengths which causes eye strain and fatigue as well as damage to our retinal cells over time. Studies show it even disrupts our sleep! We are focused up close longer (on our phones, computers, etc.) and because of this we blink less, which reduces the amount of oil that is released into our eyes. Because of this our eyes are becoming dryer, in part due to the reduction of oil production by our meibomian glands.
The latest research has brought about new treatments of dry eye targeted on getting the meibomian glands to start working properly again, and here at AVC we have incorporated this into our treatment options. The main addition to our dry eye clinic has been the MiBoFlo® spa therapy which is a new therapeutic device that uses thermal induction (heat) designed to liquefy hardened oils so your meibomian glands can start producing the healthy oils giving you more comfortable, hydrated eyes and reduced need for artificial tears.
Miboflo is a spa therapy that generates comfortable “Thermal Energy” like the heat in a Jacuzzi. We gently massage to eyelids to stimulate the blood flow and liquefy the hardened oils in your glands. After a 10 minute massage the meibomian glands become unclogged, giving you immediate relief. The treatment program generally consists of three MiBoFlo® sessions and a deep cleaning to remove the build up of oils, dead skin and bacteria around your lashes that can clog the openings of the glands. Most people experience improvement right away, and usually feel less need for continued artificial tears or medicated drops. Sometimes additional treatments and maintenance take-home therapies are needed in order to obtain continued effective, long term relief.
Another useful treatment is called punctal occlusion (punctal plugs). The eye is like a bathtub with 2 drains. If we put a plug in the drains, less water will be lost down the drain. When we insert microscopic, collagen based punctal plugs into the drainage ducts, fewer tears go down the drainage ducts and more stay in our eyes to keep them moist.
Finally, you don’t have to keep suffering from dry eyes. Dr. Burgett’s philosophy is to identify the cause of the dry eyes and treat it, improving symptoms and reducing the risk of worsening. If you have been dealing with dry, burning, uncomfortable or watery eyes (especially with contact lenses), let our staff know so we can help your eyes feel better.