The need for winter eye care isn’t exactly news to our industry. But with the latest research on dry eye syndrome and blurry vision, it’s important for everyone to take extra precautions in 2016. Temporary blurred vision is far more likely to occur in wintertime, according to eye researcher Sharon Kleyne and this increase in eye problems is triggered by the effects of dry eye syndrome.
Dry eyes happen in winter when the atmosphere being much cooler and less humid, essentially steals the moisture from our eyes. As the dry atmosphere evaporates the moist tear film which normally covers and protects our eyes, irritation occurs and in some more extreme cases, dry spots appear on our cornea. These dry spots can cause image distortion, giving us temporary impaired or blurred vision.
The bad news is that blurry vision can become extremely dangerous, especially for those who operate machinery at work or for those who are driving at night. But the good news is that both dry eye syndrome and blurry vision can be easily relieved (and can be easily prevented).
Here are 7 helpful winter eyecare tips to keep your vision in top condition.
1. Protect Your Eyes from Heat
A log fire is wonderful in the wintertime but the dry heat will further irritate dry eyes so don’t sit too close to the heat source. If you are using heating in your car, divert the heat away from your face and don’t let the air blow directly at you.
2. Do Regular Eye Exercises
If you work with computers, rest often and make time to do eye exercises to relieve tired, dry or irritated eyes. Blinking regularly is also important if you stare at a screen all day as this will keep your eyes lubricated.
3. Use Eye Drops to Lubricate Eyes
An easy way to lubricate eyes whilst on the go is to carry eye drops in your bag. Choosing the right eye drops is important though and it’s recommended to use lubricant drops such as Scope Healthcare Hycosan Plus Eye Drops rather than beautifying eye drops that claim to remove redness or make the whites of your eyes whiter – as these are for cosmetic purposes only and will not relieve dry eyes.
4. Use a Humidifier
Home humidifiers are great for balancing out the moisture levels in the air. This not only helps to prevent the problems of winter dry eye and blurry vision, but it can also improve overall health for the whole family.
5. Include Oily Fish in Your Diet
Fish oil increases gland health and this includes how well your tear film works. Include more oily fish such as salmon, tuna, trout, sardines or anchovies in your everyday diet or take fish supplements for an extra omega-3 boost.
6. Look After Household Plants
If you don’t want to invest in a humidifier, the most natural way to manage air moisture levels is with house plants. Plants help to purify the air in your home plus they organically release moisture throughout the day so the atmosphere will always be perfectly controlled.
7. Use Gentle Eye Makeup
Eyes can become extra sensitive in the winter if they are dry. Don’t further irritate them with harsh chemicals. Avoid eye makeup altogether if possible or choose to use gentle formulas and gentle removers.