Eat This, Not That! / Dr. Ming Wang

Unexpected Health Problems After 50: You’ve Got Dry Eye

July 9, 2019

mature healthy woman with blue eyes and flawless skin crying and drying up her tears, worried and emotional. Mature and aging face with a sad expression, outdoors

Jennifer Aniston is 50 years old. No wonder she’s doing ads for dry eye. “With age, the tear gland–called the lacrimal gland–has been shown to produce less tear volume,” says Dr. Ming Wang, an ophthalmologist. “Glands in the eyelids–called themeibomian glands–also start to atrophy and often produce less of the oily part of the tears that prevent their evaporation. Both of these factors contribute to nearly everyone over age 50 suffering from some form of dry eye. Dry eye produces symptoms including grittiness, watering, red eye, intermittent blurred vision, and discomfort.”

Recommendation: “Treatment includes over the counter tears. If these are not sufficient, a doctor can prescribe medications or treat with in office therapies,” says Dr. Wang.