As the weather turns colder, your eyes can be exposed to harsh conditions, and lead to common yet unpleasant conditions such as dry eyes or eye inflammation.
With changes in weather frequent during the colder months, the harsh conditions such as rain, snow and fog can cause our eyes to feel dry, inflamed or sore. Read below to learn more about these conditions and what you can do to prevent or alleviate them.
How can we protect our eyes during the colder months?
Our homes and workplaces are often subject to reduced humidity levels due to heating and air conditioning, which can lead to dry eye symptoms. This may include burning, itching and blurry vision and general discomfort to the eyes with the temperature ever changing.
How can you help prevent dry eyes?
Keep your eyes moisturised
Ensuring your eyes stay moisturised and hydrated during the colder months can really help to alleviate symptoms we associate with this season.
A great option is a humidifier, the water from the humidifier will provide moisture in the air which can help relieve the symptoms of dry eyes by keeping them hydrated.
Top Tip: If you find your eyes particularly dry, leave your humidifier on overnight.
Drink plenty of water
Drinking plenty of fresh water will keep your eyes, skin, and the rest of your body hydrated.
Dehydration is one of the key contributors to dry eyes so ensuring you are hydrated will not only help with dry eyes but it can also help to reduce puffiness and dark circles.
Ensuring you are drinking plenty of water will assist your body to flush out excess fluids from your system, which in turn will help to reduce dark circles and puffiness around your eyes.
Use eye drops
Eye drops are a must have over the winter months, where your eyes may become dry and sore, eye drops can assist with making vision more comfortable and rehydrating your eyes.
Eye drops are typically available over the counter at pharmacies or from your local opticians. Ensure you find the eye drops targeted for your specific requirements and don’t be afraid to ask your pharmacist or optician for recommendations.
This may sound like an obvious one but don’t forget to blink your eyes more frequently as this will help to lubricate your eyes in the colder weather.
Top Tip: Keep your eye drops in your bag or pocket over the colder months so you always have them on hand!
Sunglasses are a must! Ultraviolet light can damage the eye's surface, causing corneal inflammation which may require antibiotic eye drops to prevent infection.
Redness, pain, and sensitivity to light are common symptoms. Wearing polarised sunglasses will block harmful UVA and UVB rays from damaging your eyes.
Top Tip: Frames with a large surface area will protect more of your eyes! So you can be stylish and safe!
During the winter conjunctivitis is more common. It is a contagious disease spread by viruses or bacteria.
Much like the cold or flu virus, we find this more common over the colder months with more direct contact, viruses are more prevalent over the colder months. With this increased risk, wash your hands frequently and avoid touching your eyes.
Top Tip: Take a hand sanitiser with you so you can ensure you keep your hands clean at all times.
Monitor your screen time
With modern lifestyles, not spending time in front of a screen can prove difficult. This could be time on your computer at work, working on a tablet device, on your phone or relaxing in front of your television.
Excessive screen time can cause eye strain and dry eyes.
Top Tip: Why not try the 20-20-20 rule! If you are working with screens for long periods of the time try to take a short break every 20 minutes and fixate on an object at least 20 feet away for at least 20 seconds, this helps with eye strain and dry eyes.
Visit your local M&S Opticians who can diagnose winter-related eye problems such as dryness and conjunctivitis. The optometrist can also perform preventive screenings using the latest OCT Technology that detect vision problems early when eye diseases are most treatable.
Book an appointment today at your local store today