Four Winter Eye Health Tips
1) Be Aware of the Issues That the Winter Season Can Cause
As already mentioned, there are a lot of common issues caused by the winter season which most people are unaware of. One of the best ways to protect your eyes this year is to be aware of such hazards and to prepare accordingly.
Here are a few problems you may encounter during wintertime.
- Surprisingly, snow, ice, and cloud cover can actually cause excessive brightness which can be difficult for your eyes due to light sensitivity. It’s always a good idea to have a good set of UV-graded sunglasses.
- Dry-eye is a common occurrence within the winter months, with the wind and dry, cold air causing irritation around our eyes. Likewise, if we spend too much time indoors with fires and heat, the dryness of that air can further cause excessive dryness.
- Rather than dry-eye, one of the major troubles caused by the cold of winter can also be excessive watering of the eyes, as our tear-ducts overproduce tears in order to stave off dryness caused by the wind and cold.
- A final danger, which needs to be remembered, is the temporary and permanent damage that can be caused by the overexposure of UV light to our eyes. This risk is increased especially on bright days where there is also a lot of snow. The snow easily reflects the light into our eyes, leading to both thermal and photochemical damage that is essentially “sunburn” on our eyes.
2) Keep Your Eyes Protected
The most obvious way you can keep your eyes healthy this season is by protecting them with sunglasses, goggles, and other eyewear.
As mentioned before, this is especially necessary if spending a lot of time in the snow, so make sure you wear ski goggles if you happen to be spending any long amount of time in the snow, such as engaging in winter sports. (This also has the added effect of preventing snow or ice chips from getting into your eyes and causing painful damage to your corneas.)
3) Limit Screen Time
A big temptation during the colder months is to spend more and more time in front of a screen at home. Why be out in the cold when we can instead hang out at home and watch Netflix (or one of the thousand other online streaming platforms)?
However, overexposure to screens is another main cause of eye dryness which can lead to eye itchiness and irritation.
To prevent this, try to follow the 20-20-20 rule. Every 20 minutes, look at something other than the screen that is at least 20 feet away, for at least 20 seconds. By doing this, you give your eyes the opportunity to rest and reset, preventing irritation and discomfort from the long-term screen exposure.
4) Treat Your Eyes When Necessary
One thing that most eye specialists will recommend is putting a cool wet cloth over your eyes in order to soothe eye irritation, allow them to rest, and remove any sort of bacteria or debris which may have entered them. This also has the added effect of stopping you from using your hands to touch your eyes, which is a good way of putting that bacteria or debris there, to begin with.
Additionally, we need to be aware of when it’s time to seek outside help. If none of these tips are helping, and if your eye issues are continuing and/or worsening, then it is probably time to set up an appointment.
Thankfully, that’s where we come in!
Asheville Vision and Wellness
The team here at Asheville Vision and Wellness is happy to help you figure out a more detailed solution for healing and protection for your eyes.
For help with your eye issues or for further questions regarding winter eye protection, do not hesitate to contact Asheville Vision and Wellness. We have over thirty years of experience helping patients protect their eyes and improve eye health.
Our staff is always happy to assist you with any of your eye care needs. Give us a call or book an appointment today.