Winter care tips for dry eyes
Most common problem people suffer in winter is dry eyes
The mercury is falling with winter just starting to kick in, most of us are tempted with happy urge unpacking quilts, jackets, scarves, sweaters that were sleeping in the attic for months and probably gearing up for a winter holiday plans and the last thing on your mind is “eye care”.
One of the most common problem people suffer in winter is dry eyes, as the temperature decreases air becomes more colder and drier, hence like skin, eye also loses moisture due to evaporation. The use of heaters in the house maintains the environment nice and warm but increases the evaporation of tears from the eyes consequently resulting in itching and burning sensation, sometimes also associated with redness and excessive tearing. Prolonged untreated dry eyes can cause blurry vision and damage the cornea.
The second most prevalent case is flu (conjunctivitis or eye infections). Dry air, poor ventilation and large gathering due to holiday season increase the spread of infections. Hence it’s very important to keep eyes protected.
Safety tips to keep eyes healthy in winter:
• Drink lots of fluids to keep body as well as eyes hydrated
• Keep eyes moist by applying artificial tear substitutes and avoiding frequent rubbing the eyes
• Use humidifiers in the house to add some moisture in the indoor air
• Stay away from direct heat (fireplace..) as it increases the evaporation and makes the eyes and skin much drier
• Try to avoid digital devices as much as possible as they increase the effects of dryness on the eyes and blink often
• Consume foods rich in vitamin A and omega 3 fatty acids like fatty fishes, like salmon, flax seeds, chia seeds, as they improve the function of Mebomian glands and thus increase the lipid layer in the tears thus help in retaining the moisture in the eye
• Use 100% UV protected sunglasses especially in harsh environments like snow and ice as they magnify the UV rays and make them stronger hence can lead to snow blindness
• Eye hygiene along with frequent washing hands is vital in preventing and spreading infections and flu of the eye
• Don’t share eye make up and cosmetics with friends and family as this could spread infections
• Schedule regular eye examinations to maintain good eye sight and health
Follow these tips and make your winter more healthy and merry.
Authored By: Dr.Prardhana Reddy – Consultant ophthalmologist & Glaucoma Specialist MaxiVision Super Specialty Eye hospitals group Hyderabad.