Dry Eye Clinic

“Dry eye is a multifactorial disease of the ocular surface characterized by a loss of homeostasis of the tear film, and accompanied by ocular symptoms, in which tear film instability and hyperosmolarity, ocular surface inflammation and damage, and neurosensory abnormalities play etiological roles.”


What is Dry Eye?

Dry eye is a common and chronic condition that occurs when insufficient tears are produced or these tears are not of ideal quality. Generally, a dysfunction of the tear film is what causes dry eye.

The three layers that make up our tear film are: 

  • The mucous layer helps spread the tears evenly across the eye’s front surface.
  • The aqueous layer is the most significant part of the tear film and is made up of the water-like element of the tears. This layer helps to lubricate and protect the eyes from any debris.
  • The lipid layer prevents the tears from evaporating too quickly. This layer is produced by the expression of the meibomian glands that run along the top and bottom eyelids.

Our optometrists will evaluate your tear film to determine the severity of your dry eye and the associated symptoms.

tear film - dry eye - tear film layers - symptoms
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Common Dry Eye Symptoms

Symptoms of dry eye are dependent on the person. People may struggle with one or more symptoms and may experience them consistently or sporadically.

Some of the typical dry eye symptoms are: 

  • Redness
  • Itchy eyes
  • Sore or tired eyes
  • Grittiness or foreign body sensation
  • Excessive watering
  • Fluctuating vision

Our doctors have a particular interest in the treatment of dry eyes. We strive to provide an enjoyable experience that relieves everyone from stubborn dry eye symptoms. Without treatment, dry eye symptoms can often persist and potentially worsen.


What Causes Dry Eye?

Several factors can cause dry eye. We are dedicated to addressing all the contributing factors to your symptoms while we work together to create a customized treatment plan for your needs. Our goal is to achieve ocular homeostasis.

Meibomian Gland Dysfunction (MGD) is the most common cause of dry eye. Meibomian glands express oil each time we blink; without proper function, our tears evaporate more quickly. With our in-office testing, we can determine how efficiently your glands function and the quality of oil produced. Our Dry Eye Technicians will use this information to determine the best course of treatment specifically for you.

Other factors that contribute to MGD include:


Certain medications, such as antihistamines, antidepressants, acne medication, hormone replacement therapy, and oral contraceptives, can reduce the production of tears.

Underlying Medical Conditions

Certain medical conditions such as Rheumatoid arthritis, diabetes, thyroid dysfunction, Lupus, Rosacea and Sjogren Syndrome can increase the risk of developing dry eye symptoms.

Digital Screens

Typically, we blink about 15 times per minute. When concentrating, especially with digital screens, our blink rate decreases to 3 to 4 times per minute. This can lead to less oil being expressed from the meibomian glands and increased tear evaporation.

Diet & Hydration

Alcohol and caffeine are diuretics that can cause decreased tear production. Also, dairy and gluten irritate our gut health and can cause ocular inflammation. Diet alone is sometimes insufficient to provide enough Omega 3 fatty acids to improve tear quality and supplementation is required.

Climate & Environment

Dry, dusty, and windy environments can accelerate the evaporation of tears. It can also cause an overproduction of an eyelid mite (Demodex folliculorum). These cause inflammation and worsening of symptoms.

Treatment options

Dry Eye Treatments

Our patients receive comprehensive testing before treatment. With this testing, it allows us to establish the root cause and provide options yielding the best results. Several in-house or at-home treatment options can prove beneficial for managing dry eye symptoms. At Optical Studio, we provide both.

at-home treatments - dry eye - eye drops

At-Home Treatments

Whether you want to make the most out of other treatments you’re receiving, or you want to suppress your dry eye symptoms before they get too extreme. There are a variety of options you can do to support your eye health.

intense pulsed light - IPL - dry eye - treatment

Intense Pulsed Light (IPL)

Intense Pulsed Light, or IPL, helps with dry eye conditions by reducing inflammation, often caused by facial and/or ocular rosacea or telangiectasias, allowing the meibomian glands to function properly.

Radiofrequency (RF)

Radiofrequency, or RF, helps with dry eye conditions by tightening the skin around the eyes and warming up the oil to a more malleable consistency in the meibomian glands for improved expression with each blink.

Lipiflow - dry eye - treatment

Lipiflow Thermal Pulsation System

Lipiflow helps with dry eye conditions by removing the stagnant and thick oil from the meibomian glands through the action of thermal pulsations provided by the applicators inserted underneath the eyelids.

Dry Eye Clinic

Meet our Technicians



Diagnostic & Dry Eye Technician

In 2018, I completed my Medical Office Assistant program. I wasn’t sure what type of medical office I wanted to work in, but I knew I didn’t want to work in a general clinic or hospital. So, I spent several years in the food and beverage service industry, working late nights, and travelling every chance I could, while I figured out what I wanted to do. I joined the team at Optical Studio in 2022, and while I am new to the optical industry, I love getting the chance to learn something new each day. My goal is to continue to improve my knowledge and understanding on all the advanced technology, while connecting with patients and fellow team members. In my spare time I enjoy staying active, playing board games with friends, going on road trips…the list goes on. Something high on my bucket list currently is to go on an African safari.



Dry Eye Technician & Medical Aesthetician

I grew up in Raymond, Alberta, playing every sport I could. I continued my education and athletics at the University of Alberta, playing rugby and studying Kinesiology. Unfortunately, a few too many knee injuries required me to take a break from sports. I moved home and took a break from school as well. During this time, I worked with my uncle at his new business, True North Axe Throwing, and figured out what I wanted to do. I stumbled upon the Medical Esthetician program and fell in love. I moved to Calgary to complete the program in February of 2022 and worked in the skincare industry right up until I joined the Optical Studio team. Although I haven’t been in optometry for long, I am SO excited to continuously learn to provide the best services! When I’m not at work I enjoy working out, baking, spoiling my dog Reggie, or being around my family! 



Dry Eye Technician

Stay tuned to learn more about Sam.


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