The tear is a watery, oily and saline substance that cleanses and hydrates the ocular structure to prevent dryness of the cornea. When the lubrication of the eyes is poor or the tear film it does not have a good composition, it is recommended to use artificial tears.
Artificial tears are administered in the eyes to try to replace the function of natural tears. The use of these drops is of great help in relieving the symptoms of the syndrome. Dry Eye.
En Área Oftalmológica Avanzada We explain below what artificial tears are and what they are for.
What are artificial tears?
The lacrimal system fulfills essential functions for the well-being of the ocular structure. This system produces the tear, a substance that is made up of three layers:
- Internal mucosa.
- Aqueous intermediate.
- Oily external.
These three components are essential for a tear to be of good quality.
The tear is responsible for cleaning and hydrating the eyes, prevents dryness of the cornea, distributes oxygen to the entire ocular structure, fights infections and preserves refractive power.
If the tear does not have the ideal composition, evaporates quickly or breaks prematurely, the patient may begin to suffer from syndrome of Dry Eye. This disease is more common than most people think and can cause permanent damage to the eyes.
Artificial tears are pharmaceutical drops whose composition mimics the ingredients of natural tears. The goal is to keep the eye lubricated to combat dryness, prevent causing damage to the cornea, and relieve dry eye symptoms.
They are administered topically. Its composition mimics the physical and chemical characteristics of the eye tear: viscosity, osmolarity, pH and surface tension.
Types of eye drops
different types of artificial tears that can be classified according to their composition:
- With preservatives: these types of drops are present in several types of eye drops and contain different chemicals to combat the proliferation of bacteria once we open the container. These preservatives can irritate the eyes if you suffer from moderate or severe dry eyes.
- Without preservatives: they have almost no additives. They are prescribed for patients with moderate or extreme dry eyes who need to apply artificial tears up to 4 times a day. These drops can be found in a single dose presentation (single dose).
What are they for?
The main use of artificial tears is to lubricate the ocular structure to combat dry eye symptoms. However, artificial tears can also be used to:
- Avoid injuries when extracting sand, dust or any foreign object that may have entered the eye.
- Reduce the friction between the ocular structures (blinking) and combat the discomfort that this produces. This application of artificial tears is highly recommended during the postoperative periods of eye surgeries.
- Help reduce friction and tissue growth in patients diagnosed with pterygium. Pterygium is a benign tumor that forms in the conjunctiva.
- Relieve stinging and itching caused by eye allergies.
- Relieve and combat the discomfort of Eye fatigue.
En Área Oftalmológica Avanzada We show you these and more tips about artificial tears. Visit us and we will assist you in the best way!«Back to the glossary index