Winter is here, and we all know what that means: it’s time to layer up. Not just in clothes but also your eyewear wardrobe.
In the winter months, our eyes are exposed to much higher rates of dry heat and bright snow-capped landscapes, which can be hard on our eyesight—especially if you’re wearing contact lenses. If you notice consistent discomfort, you may be experiencing dry eye syndrome.
Dry eye syndrome is a common condition affecting over four million Americans yearly. Dry eyes can cause the following symptoms:
- Burning or stinging sensation
- Gritty feeling
- Excessive tearing
- Redness and pain
- Blurry vision
- Sensitivity to light
- Discomfort with contact lens wear
- Eye fatigue
If you or someone you know is suffering from dry eye syndrome, the first thing is to ensure that you use a humidifier in your home or office. Humidifiers are environmentally friendly and non-toxic; they decrease the number of allergens in the air and are portable. Try putting one near where you spend most of your time so that the water vapor from the unit moistens the air around you.
Dry eyes are a common condition that affects many people. They’re caused by problems with the tear film, which coats your eye and keeps it healthy. Dry eyes are typically relieved with a blink or two, but seriously dry eyes might need a bit more reinforcement to recover.
When you don’t produce enough tears or when they evaporate too quickly, your eyes can become irritated and uncomfortable. Dry eye syndrome can happen because of age, medication side effects, or environmental elements like the cold. A solution to consider for dry irritated eyes could be lubricating eye drops or “artificial tears.”
Many different types of eye drops available can help treat dry eye symptoms. Eye lubricants work by adding some of the same elements that your tears naturally have: water, oil, and mucus. This helps your tear film work more effectively to protect the surface of your eyes from irritants like dust and smoke particles.
You can get lubricating eye drops without a prescription. There are many brands to choose from, but remember that no single brand works best for all types of dry eye. Instead, you should try a few different brands to find the one that works best for your eyes.
If these steps aren’t enough, then it may be a good idea to discuss your contact lens or glasses options with an eye doctor at Utah Eye Centers. They can recommend an affordable and effective way to keep your eyes safe this winter!