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What Is an IPL Treatment?

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A woman getting an IPL treatment for her dry eye

Navigating through any eye conditions you may be dealing with can be difficult, especially if you’re dealing with a condition like dry eye disease. With the evolution of eye care technology, your optometrist has more resources than ever for treatment options.

One of these options has to do with IPL treatment. 

But what is IPL treatment? And what’s the process? Let’s explore IPL treatment and how it can treat dry eye disease and benefit you. 

What Is IPL Treatment?

Intense pulsed light (IPL) therapy is a treatment for dry eye disease that uses gentle pulses of light around the skin of your eyes to reduce inflammation. 

IPL works through the OptiLight treatment by Lumenis. OptiLight is a light-based, non-invasive treatment that focuses on the area below your eyes to manage dry eyes. The treatment is safe, gentle, and is the first and only IPL FDA-approved dry eye management method.

Before getting into how OptiLight works, it’s important to understand what causes dry eye disease. 

What Causes Dry Eye Disease?

Dry eye disease is a common condition that occurs when your eyes are not properly lubricated. Dry eye disease is more likely when your eyes don’t produce enough tears. Dry eye disease is also more common in individuals over the age of 50, particularly females.

Dry eye disease is usually caused by the tear film being unable to lubricate the eye properly, some common factors that could contribute to this include:

  • Various medications, including those used to treat high blood pressure, insomnia, and allergies
  • Health conditions and diseases, like diabetes, lupus, thyroid issues, and rheumatoid arthritis 
  • Prolonged or frequent exposure to dry environments.
  • Smoking
  • Frequent use of contact lenses

Dry eye disease can be very uncomfortable to deal with, and it’s important to look out for the symptoms. 

Some of these symptoms include:

  • Burning, irritated eyes
  • Heavy, tired, or fatigued eyes
  • Blurred vision
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Ocular redness
  • Itchy eyes

OptiLight treatment is a great option when dealing with dry eye disease—let’s look at how OptiLight works.

A woman getting an OptiLight treatment for her dry eye disease

How Does OptiLight Treatment Work?

OptiLight uses precise pulses of light to reduce the inflammation around your eyes that appears when dealing with dry eye disease. Along with targeting the inflammation, OptiLight has a multi-factorial effect that includes:

  • Increasing tear break-up time
  • Reducing the amount of demodex mites and bacteria living around your eyes
  • Eliminating blood vessels that contribute to inflammation
  • Improving meibomian gland functionality

The treatment itself is fast and simple—your optometrist will apply a coupling gel to the treatment area and cover your eyes with shields.

OptiLight treatment takes only 10 to 15 minutes. As the light is applied to your skin, you may experience a warm sensation with minimum discomfort.

Improvements to dry eye symptoms are usually seen around the second or third treatment, depending on the patient.

OptiLight treatment is a great option for dry eye management, but in some cases, it may not be for you if:

Ultimately, your optometrist can determine if OptiLight treatment is right for you.

Eye Care in Daniel Island, Charleston

IPL treatment and OptiLight can help you get over those pesky dry eye symptoms that can cause discomfort. New eye care methods are appearing every day, and your optometrist can help you understand them. Book an appointment with your optometrist at Daniel Island Eye Care today and learn more about IPL treatment options for your dry eye disease.

Dr. Turner

Written by Dr. Charles J. Turner, OD

Dr. Turner is extremely proud to be Daniel Island’s first optometrist, a distinction that has brought him great respect throughout the community. As a therapeutically licensed optometrist, Dr. Turner provides his patients with multifaceted care.

His practice has a unique approach thanks to his diverse blend of experience. He completed internships at Keesler Air Force Base in Biloxi, MS, Montrose Veterans Hospital in Montrose, NY, and Huntington Veterans Hospital in Huntington, WV. These experiences have given Dr. Turner the confidence and ability to treat eyes of all ages and stages. Dr. Turner graduated with a BS in biology from Virginia Tech and received his Doctor of Optometry degree from Indiana University School of Optometry in Bloomington, IN.

More Articles By Dr. Charles J. Turner, OD
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