Good morning and welcome back to Atlanta and Company I am Christine Pullara Atlantans have been seeing lots of yellow lately due to the pollen of course it is causing dry eyes for most of us which can lead to several other risk factors that we need to be on the look out for. Joining us now from the Atlanta Vision Institute is Dr. Farooq Ashraf who has got some tips and suggestions on how we can prevent and treat dry eyes and he has brought along one of his patients Shanneka Bates. Good morning doctor and good morning Shanneka. Good morning. Good morning. Let’s talk about this I mean it has been so bad lately the pollen maybe not today but it’s been bad for the last few weeks it seems. Shanneka when did you first realize that you had a problem with dry eyes and it was actually a real issue not something that was just kind of temporary? When I realized it was that I am a flight attendant so I am constantly in air I am doing ten twelve to fifteen hour flights at a time and as I am in flight it is like my eyes are just getting dry itchy I am scratching them it is feeling like you know little rocks and stuff inside. Right. So I was like what problem am I having so I was wearing contacts couldn’t keep wearing contacts it was like I had to do something about it so that’s when I started doing my research then came to find out that basically I was having like dry eyes when I found got in contact with Dr. Ashraf he was you know I got diagnosed as having dry eyes and things of that nature. And talk to me about how he’s helped you how you have been even feeling lately now. I have been feeling great. I don’t have to use artificial tears anymore to keep the eyes moisturized and also I did another wonderful great thing is I had LASIK surgery so and now when I do fly it’s like you know I don’t have to constantly use drops to my eyes are not as dry as they normally would be and it has just worked out perfect. And Dr. Ashraf, tell me about who typically does develop dry eyes obviously her job makes that a high probability for her but who else does? Shanneka is a classic patient that we see with dry eyes her case was she wore contact lenses. The people who are risk for dry eyes usually as we get older in age as we get older you get a higher incidence of dry eyes and females. Females are a little bit higher than males and then also what we’re doing to the eyes Shanneka’s case she had contact lenses which is a piece of plastic sitting in the eye so as we get older the tear film can’t support that piece of plastic and then gives her the classic symptoms of burning itching foreign body sensation and that’s why she came to the doctor. And Shanneka when you were traveling was it mostly when you were when you were up in the plane that you realized this was a problem was it also when you were just living your daily life? A lot of it was started in flight like I said because it’s so dry when you are on an aircraft but then sometimes just at night and you would just be sitting around and when you’re rubbing your eyes you are rubbing it is like you are rubbing the moisture out of your eyes so it constantly just dryness and then pollen and things of that nature can irritate you as well. Absolutely and so obviously she was just using some drops to try and treat them but how do you suggest that we treat them and what can we do if we come to you and have a visit with you what you are going be able to tell us in terms of preventative steps also. Right the key is diagnosis like a majority of people just think of it as a nuisance but when you see the physician we really have to diagnose that you do have dry eyes and dry eyes is really a multifactorial thing there’s two conditions one you can produce and not enough tears and the most common condition we see is the quality of tears aren’t great and depending on which route you go the treatment can be completely different. Okay so give me the gamut of obviously surgery worst-case scenario. That’s worse case scenario I mean just to make it simple the first easiest step is using artificial tears and you just have to put them in the eyes and which can be a nuisance but that is the easiest most cost effective solution. To feel better so that helps. Right now with females they don’t like that because of the makeup issue and there is an issue. Yeah true. Beyond that we have other things we can do we can in the office do some procedures and there’s some prescription medications that may help. Okay good but what if somebody has really bad allergies and they are just thinking while this is just allergy related is that when you just recommended that they come and see you for consultations and just be able to determine if it is truly allergies or if it’s just dry eye. Absolutely they’re two different conditions and they’re kind of interrelated but yes you should go to see your doctor and make sure you have the right diagnosis because the treatment can vary depending on which condition you have if it’s straight allergies we give you a very simple allergy drug nowadays it’s once a day and you’re done once the season’s over but these two conditions sometimes go hand-in-hand. Okay and what can it lead to if we don’t fix it if you don’t prevent it and you don’t take the necessary steps? Well it can cause some damage to the eyes and some of it can be permanent damage and the longer you go it can be more difficult to treat. And Shanneka how are you feeling is that like a new lease on life now that this is just one less thing you have to worry about? Yes I had LASIK surgery and it is the ultimate best it changed my life totally so I recommend if you do have red eyes dry eyes itchy eyes and is not really pertained to allergies of that nature and if you could go to your doctor as I went to mine and they offer LASIK surgery I say go for it. It is awesome. You are seeing better alright? Oh my God, yes. Actually she said she reads the license plates in front of her now.
Yes. I just am in the car now and just read the license plates daily and like okay I can see this and it is amazing it is definitely it changed the life. Fantastic and I understand you have a good offer for Atlanta and Company viewers tell us about that Well now I want to just step back and just LASIK surgery is not a cure all but but for for Shanneka’s condition her reason for dryness was the contact lenses. Got it. So we got rid of the contact lenses hence that’s why she feels better. Ok great. And came to surgery. That is perfect and that it is good to know and you will explain all that once they come in and actually you can see more about the individual problem. Exactly right. So for the Atlanta Company listeners we are offering a 40 percent discount on the lasik procedure so this may be helpful as it was for Shanneka. Fantastic and that is called Intralase? Intralase is one of the procedures we do yes.
Okay wonderful while I am so glad that you have been helped with it and thank you so much for making us aware that we don’t have to suffer with this so thank you doctor thank Shanneka take care. Thank you. And if you’d like some more information about the Atlanta Vision give them a call at 678-542-2222 or log on to their website it is atlanta2020.com. The Atlanta Vision Institute. 1611 Mount Vernon Road #100 Atlanta, Georgia 30338. (770) 622-2488