Dry Eye Treatment: Punctal Plugs
If artificial tears and other lubricants fail to fully relieve your dry eye syndrome, punctal plugs are usually the next step in dry eye treatment. Punctal plugs are tiny devices – no larger than a grain of rice – that are placed into your tear ducts in order to block drainage. This allows more moisture to remain in the tear film on the surface of your eyes. Punctal plugs are also sometimes called “lacrimal plugs” or “occluders.”
There are two main types of punctal plugs:
- Dissolvable – These plugs are made of a material that your body will eventually absorb, such as collagen. Dissolvable punctal plugs can last anywhere from a couple of days to several months, and are sometimes used to prevent dry eyes after LASIK.
- Semi–permanent – These plugs are made of a more long-lasting material (usually silicone).
In many cases, dissolvable plugs will be used first to see whether or not the treatment effectively resolves your dry eye symptoms. If so, semi-permanent punctal plugs will then be placed.
If you have further questions about dry eye treatment, please contact Brooks Eye Associates today or call (972) 737-1181 to schedule a consultation with our experienced Dallas dry eye doctor. We serve patients throughout Plano, Frisco, and Dallas, Texas.