How We Can Help
Dry Eye Treatment Information
We use several approaches to treat dry eyes, depending on your specific needs. Options include:
- Artificial tears. Many brands of artificial tears are available without a prescription. These products are often sold as eye drops. Artificial tears provide temporary relief, and you may need to use them many times each day. Gel and ointment versions are also available. If over-the-counter products do not work, prescription artificial tears may be effective.
- Medicine. Cyclosporine is a prescription medicine approved for treatment of dry eye. This treatment relieves symptoms, boosts tear production and reduces damage to the cornea. You might need to take this medicine for three to six months before seeing results. Short-term use of corticosteroid eye drops is another option for reducing inflammation in severe cases of dry eye.
- Lacrimal plugs. One way to keep more tears in the eye is to block their exit. We place plugs made of silicone, collagen or other materials in the tiny drainage holes at the inner corners of the eyelid to prevent tears from leaving. Many plugs are semi-permanent, meaning they stay in place indefinitely but can be removed if necessary. Some plugs dissolve over time. We place lacrimal plugs, also known as punctal plugs, in your eyes during an office visit. You will not normally feel the plugs when they are in place.
- Punctal cautery. In this treatment, we use a simple in-office surgical procedure to close the eye’s drainage holes permanently with heat. This treatment is for severe cases of dry eye. It may be an option if other methods have not been successful.
- LipiFlow. This newer technology uses gentle heat and pressure to unclog glands that normally add an oily material to the tears. When these glands do not work properly, your tears evaporate too quickly and your eyes become dry. This condition is called evaporative dry eye. We perform LipiFlow treatment in our offices. The procedure requires only a few minutes per eye as you recline in a chair. After treatment, your glands may begin producing the oily substance at normal levels again.
Dry Eye Locations & Physicians
Use the search options below to find treatments available in your area.
Find a Specialist
Enter a Zip Code to find a specialist at IU Health.
Dry Eye Support Services
Learn more about dry eye at these websites:
A Sampling of Dry Eye Support Services
This patient-friendly resource from the American Academy of Ophthalmology provides a wealth of information on dry eye and its causes, prevention and treatment.
Eugene and Marilyn Glick Eye Institute
As part of the Indiana University School of Medicine, the Glick Eye Institute maintains patient fact sheets on dry eye and other common conditions.
Indiana Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute
This institute enables you to search for Indiana clinical research studies in which you might be able to participate.
National Eye Institute
This U.S. federal agency offers extensive detail on the causes of dry eye and ways to relieve it.