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49 y/o male...What's my limit?

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  • 49 y/o male...What's my limit?

    Hi everyone,
    I'll be introducing myself and tell you my story in a different posting, in the meanwhile I'd love any comments on a more practical issue. I ended up extremely dry after lasik nearly 4 months ago, but I was quite dry already (I just didn't know it since I attributed symptoms to pet dander allergy). At the moment I wear goggles all day at home and I'm so petrified of developing any issues (corneal abrasion, etc) that I'm house bound and keep on instilling drops all day. At night I put an ointment I was given. My eyes are red or, when at their best by midday quasi-red, though that doesn't last for long before they go red again. I live near London in the UK.
    So my question is what are my limits? To what extent can I go without imperiling my eyes health?
    I used to be a teacher but this thing forced me to quit. I know tv and computer should be a no no, but I don't know what else to do.
    How have you worked out what your own limits are?
    Thank you very much.
    Drageye

  • #2
    Originally posted by drageye View Post
    Hi everyone,
    I'll be introducing myself and tell you my story in a different posting, in the meanwhile I'd love any comments on a more practical issue. I ended up extremely dry after lasik nearly 4 months ago, but I was quite dry already (I just didn't know it since I attributed symptoms to pet dander allergy). At the moment I wear goggles all day at home and I'm so petrified of developing any issues (corneal abrasion, etc) that I'm house bound and keep on instilling drops all day. At night I put an ointment I was given. My eyes are red or, when at their best by midday quasi-red, though that doesn't last for long before they go red again. I live near London in the UK.
    So my question is what are my limits? To what extent can I go without imperiling my eyes health?
    I used to be a teacher but this thing forced me to quit. I know tv and computer should be a no no, but I don't know what else to do.
    How have you worked out what your own limits are?
    Thank you very much.
    Drageye
    First of all, I would strive NOT to be housebound. It's bad for a person's mental health to be cooped up all the time - plus it gives you too much time to think and dwell on your situation, which isn't always a good thing. I wear my Wiley X sunglasses out everywhere since they do a fantastic job of protecting my eyes from irritants and drafts - I wear them shopping, driving, at work (even though I work with the public and the Wiley's do NOT look normal hehe), indoors and out, I wear them in restaurants if they are full of cooking fumes and/or drafty - I'll take them off if sitting still in a draft-free place, but otherwise, I'm wearing them.

    As for the extent you can go without negatively impacting the health of your eyes, my strategy has always been to pay close attention to what effect a given activity is having on my eyes. If it makes you eyes worse, then avoid it as much as possible - if it has no impact, then do more of said activity (assuming you want to) - if it has a positive impact, try to do more of it etc. Just be mindful of how your eyes feel during various activities, and go from there.

    And yeah, I've worked out what my limits are - been dealing with this for 8 years now, so I've had lots of practice!!! You'll figure out yours too.. you'll see! And odds are, you won't be dealing with this as long as I have - with any luck, you'll be one of the success stories and be feeling much better in a few months to a year!!!
    Yet another post-Lasik (2005)...
    Anyone have a time machine so I can go back and undo this mess?

    Comment


    • #3
      Hi Saag, thank you for your reply.
      I was wondering how do you manage the fogging up of your goggles when outdoors. My eyes are very weird in that respect. I've tried walking the dog but fogging up makes it nearly impossible. Unfortunately this not due to my own moisture but that one trapped from the environment..mostly. I have a pair of Buran from 7eye . And since I have to be putting in drops so often, that means going through that every time I remove my goggles.
      I was a swimmer for a long time and was never able to sort out the fogging up of swimming goggles so I'm at a loss here.
      Any ideas? Thank you in advance.

      Comment


      • #4
        I haven't used these but I've heard that anti-fog wipes can prevent the fog in goggles: http://www.amazon.com/Triswim-Anti-F.../dp/B00374FAUQ There are probably other brands, this is just one I pulled up on Google.

        I bought a pair of prescription swim goggles to wear around the house, in the car, etc when things are particularly bad and one of my eye doctors said that a few of his patients drilled *tiny* holes in the bottom (and top?) to allow for some air flow. I haven't done that yet because I keep thinking I might actually wear them to swim in but it would probably help a lot without creating so much air flow that your eyes would be affected. You could probably use one of those tiny picture hanging nails to create the holes. Start with one or two and add if necessary.

        One thing to add to SAAG's great post... it's been 4 months since you've discovered your dry eyes aren't going away (pet dander, etc). That's not very long to come to terms with a chronic issue / disease. After years of suffering from dry eye, when I finally had a diagnosis of sorts, I went through something akin to a death in the family. I know it sounds extreme but in some ways, that's how it felt. I had to adjust my ideas of what I might be capable of, what would cause me pain, how I might be limited, how I was going to LIVE, and so much more. It took time and I mourned. I felt sorry for myself, I felt angry. Finding a new, better doctor helped but even as great as my new doctor was, he couldn't cure me and I had a lot of work to do. Time helped a lot. Educating myself and the people around me helped. Not feeling sorry for myself helped a ton. Everyone has their own way of doing things and for me, I needed to remind myself about how lucky I still am, despite this disease. It's important to take care of your eyes but remember too, if you aren't out there living, what good are they? Grab an arm load of drops and venture out, short trips at first and then longer. Test your limits, Bring your goggles and your eye drops.

        P.S. Because drops are SO important to my life, I keep them EVERYWHERE. I keep a generous stash in my car, in my purse, my bedroom, the kitchen, my husband's car, etc. You'd think my dry eye would be enough to remind me to bring plenty with me but sometimes I need more drops than usual and I've looked in my purse only to find I used my last vial and that extra stash in my glovebox has been a lifesaver.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by drageye View Post
          Hi Saag, thank you for your reply.
          I was wondering how do you manage the fogging up of your goggles when outdoors. My eyes are very weird in that respect. I've tried walking the dog but fogging up makes it nearly impossible. Unfortunately this not due to my own moisture but that one trapped from the environment..mostly. I have a pair of Buran from 7eye . And since I have to be putting in drops so often, that means going through that every time I remove my goggles.
          I was a swimmer for a long time and was never able to sort out the fogging up of swimming goggles so I'm at a loss here.
          Any ideas? Thank you in advance.
          Usually they don't fog, but when they do, all I can do is take them off (squinting to protect my eyes if it's windy), then wave around my Wiley's until the fog is gone, then slap them back on. Sometimes I have to do this quite often, but it's such is life - it's better than the alternative. If the fogging was a major issue for me, I'd look into the anti-fog products made for snorkeling goggles and the like - I figure if they work on snorkeling goggles, then they'd probably work on the Wiley X's.

          Originally posted by PotatoCakes View Post
          After years of suffering from dry eye, when I finally had a diagnosis of sorts, I went through something akin to a death in the family. I know it sounds extreme but in some ways, that's how it felt.
          Me too!!! That is such a perfect way to put it. When your eye issues are severe enough, they impact everything you do - everything!! (And most "normal" people can't relate to what you're going through at all... they have no idea... so THAT doesn't make it any easier) You can't help but end up mourning the life you were "supposed" to have - and then you have to fight like hell to figure out a way to be happy with the life you've ended up with.

          Originally posted by PotatoCakes View Post
          P.S. Because drops are SO important to my life, I keep them EVERYWHERE. I keep a generous stash in my car, in my purse, my bedroom, the kitchen, my husband's car, etc. You'd think my dry eye would be enough to remind me to bring plenty with me but sometimes I need more drops than usual and I've looked in my purse only to find I used my last vial and that extra stash in my glovebox has been a lifesaver.
          Gosh yes. I have a stash everywhere too - in the bedroom, in the kitchen, in the living room, in my coat pockets, in my purses and on it goes. If worst came to worst, I suppose I could just force a lot of yawns to make my eyes water, but drops are easier hehe
          Yet another post-Lasik (2005)...
          Anyone have a time machine so I can go back and undo this mess?

          Comment


          • #6
            Thanks for your replies Potato Cakes and Saag. I'll be taking your advise on board.
            As I'm relatively new to this, would you mind telling me how often do you instill drops; and are they different types of drops? Are your eyes red? I always assumed that dryness and redness went hand in hand but I've seen photos of perfectly white eyes on this site.
            Tomorrow we have visitors and not feeling like been seen with my eyes or goggles, but will wear them anyway since the cost of not doing may be to high. The hard bit is to feel at ease. Please, if you don't mind, how have you learnt to deal with social situations and at the same time not forget about your eyes etc.
            Thanks

            Comment


            • #7
              I don't think there is any special method to feeling at ease when you feel strange. For me, time and educating people around me is it. Time has allowed me to adjust to my current state and stop caring what others think about me. Sometimes people look at me strange when I put drops in and I just tell them, matter of factly, that I don't produce tears so have to put artificial ones in frequently, I hope they don't mind. Sometimes they ask me for more information. Occasionally someone tells me they have dry eyes too and ask me for advice.

              Redness - Yes, frequently. It varies though. Conditions can make them worse or better. Humidity helps. Manufactured heat or air hurts. People comment on my red eyes not infrequently. I tell them I don't produce tears and that's usually the end of it. Most people don't actually care so any explanation is more than enough.

              Drops - I use them as frequently as needed. If you can't put drops in now without using a mirror, you'll get better at it with practice. Sometimes I can go a few hours, sometimes I need to put drops in constantly. As for what type of drops, my best suggestion is to try all of the preservative-free drops you can and see which ones work best for you. Everyone has different opinions on what is best and why. For a while, I liked drops that were more viscous but now I prefer more liquid ones (Refresh Plus). Both SAAG and I use serum drops http://www.dryeyezone.com/talk/showt...ogus-Serum-101 , as well. They make a huge difference for me, both with controlling the damage to the surface of my eye and the redness that I have but they aren't always convenient, which is why I also rely on artificial drops when on the go. Some doctors advise serum drops a specific number of times a day but mine have all said to use them as needed, with a minimum of 6x a day.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by drageye View Post
                Thanks for your replies Potato Cakes and Saag. I'll be taking your advise on board.
                As I'm relatively new to this, would you mind telling me how often do you instill drops; and are they different types of drops? Are your eyes red? I always assumed that dryness and redness went hand in hand but I've seen photos of perfectly white eyes on this site.
                Tomorrow we have visitors and not feeling like been seen with my eyes or goggles, but will wear them anyway since the cost of not doing may be to high. The hard bit is to feel at ease. Please, if you don't mind, how have you learnt to deal with social situations and at the same time not forget about your eyes etc.
                Thanks
                For social situations, I just use my drops and pretend it's normal. If someone asks why, I explain why... but try not to sound like a Debbie Downer since that's no fun for them or me. You don't want to make them feel like a jerk for asking, or super uncomfortable like they've just asked you about someone dying or something.

                I usually avoid telling them it's simply "dry eye" since people assume that's no big deal and can't figure out why you're complaining about it. Instead, I might say "Oh, I have freakishly severe dry eyes and the usual treatments don't work well enough", or "I had LASIK several years ago and it trashed my eyes... my corneal nerves were damaged and they don't work properly anymore so my eyes are over-the-top sensitive and freakishly dry" I know that must sound totally Debbie Downer haha, but you can say it with a depressed downtrodden way about you, or you can say it in an emotion-neutral matter-of-fact manner that doesn't make people so uncomfortable - I recommend the 2nd option for most social situations - if they ask more question, that's cool... if not, move the conversation along to something more fun to talk about.

                I wear my Wiley X's most of the time, unless I'm sitting still in a draft-free area. At home, I wear mine with the clear lenses - in public, or socially, I wear my sunglasses version since I feel more comfortable in them (appearance-wise).

                At my worst, I was using drops every 15 minutes. If eyedrop residue was building up in my lashes (you know how it can get to the point where you have white crusted eyedrops around your eyes and in your lashes?), I'd head to the washroom, shut my eyes tight, and run water over my lashes to clean off the residue so it wouldn't build up to the point of looking gross.

                As for the redness, mine used to be red all the time - I just acted like everything was normal, and other people tended to do the same. If someone asked why they were red, I'd explain, again trying not to sound like a Debbie Downer since the whole point of a social thing is to have fun, right?, and then get on with the evening.

                I wear my sunglasses Wiley X's even indoors when shopping - at the beginning, I felt very self-conscious in them - I learned to minimize that feeling by not looking at myself in the mirror when I had them on - made it easier to pretend I was the old me and forget I was wearing them. Also, don't purposely check to see if anyone is looking at you. To be honest, most of the time no-one is staring, but once in a while you'll catch someone - why expose yourself to that if you don't have to, right? Better not to even look for people staring hehe Ignorance is bliss in this case

                Hope this helps! (I think you'll find that once you get past the vulnerable feeling of not being at your best and having everyone know it, people are generally very kind about it and that's so nice to see in people!!!)
                Yet another post-Lasik (2005)...
                Anyone have a time machine so I can go back and undo this mess?

                Comment


                • #9
                  Thanks again PotatoCakes and Saag.
                  Both your comments are right on the spot about my issues and I'm sure I'll have to get back here and re-read them often as you both offer lots of good practical help.
                  Another practical question. How did you get your eyes to return to being white. Is it the autoserum drops? or the wileys x? do they stay like that even through the evening?
                  I just want to know if somehow there'll be some hope for my eyes not looking constantly red (although they are a bit less red for about 6 hours during the day).

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Redness. I don't know that my eyes will ever return to "white". My definition of "not red" has changed though. I have a fair amount of eyelid inflammation and redness. Some days it is dramatically worse, some days, they look "white" to me. The serum drops have definitely made a difference for me and when I use them frequently and have relatively little exposure to things that make my eyes worse (stress, lack of hydration, dry air, air movement, etc), my eyes look almost normal but they probably will never be as white as someone without this disease. I know it's easier said that done but, try not to focus on it. Stop looking at your eyes all of the time. Put your drops in and focus on living. It will take time but one day you'll look at your eyes and think, "They aren't so red."

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