- Patient Resources
Winter is officially upon us … and so is that cold, dry air. The cold weather can definitely cause eye irritation and dryness. You’ll want to give your peepers a bit of extra care at this time of year. A local Marysville, WA optometrist offers some advice on this below.
Those with allergies may have bigger bones to pick with spring and fall, when pollen counts can cause those with sensitive eyes quite miserable. However, winter can also be tough on your peepers. Seasonal discomforts include burning sensation, dry eyes, redness, itching, and light sensitivity. You may also have that uncomfortable feeling of having grit or dust in your eye. Some will notice increased mucus, or perhaps a few extra visits from the Sandman.
The go-to here is the eye drop, or artificial tear. These step in when the eye doesn’t produce the moisture it needs naturally. This often happens naturally, but in winter, that lower humidity tends to make this a pretty common issue. This is similar to what happens when you run out of windshield wiper fluid in your car: dust and debris will soon build up on your windshield.
While choosing eye drops may not be the biggest health care decision you make this month, it is something to put a bit of thought into. If you haven’t seen your eye doctor in a while, it’s best to get an exam before choosing eye drops. Some of these are formulated to help with specific issues, so it’s important to get the right kind. Otherwise, you may end up making matters worse.
Keep in mind that ongoing, stubborn dryness may be a sign of a deeper issue. Reach out to your Marysville, WA optometry clinic if this issue persists.
Speaking of windshields and washer fluid, make sure that you are good to go. Good windshield wipers and a filled tank of fluid can make all the difference when it comes to good visibility. Because we drive more at night in winter, those who don’t see well at night may really struggle, especially when it’s wet or slippery. Play it safe, and keep that windshield clean. This will reduce glare, increase visibility, and, perhaps most importantly, reduce the chances of an accident.
Winter is cold and flu season. Even a mild case of sniffles can make your eyes feel dry and inflamed. Many of those viruses that are going around can permeate the thin mucous membranes in your eyes. Washing your hands regularly can reduce the chances of you picking up your uncle’s cold, which is definitely not what you want on your holiday wish list.
New Year’s Eve may very well be the number one party night of the year. Many people go all-out to look their best as they are waving adios to 2023 and saying hello to 2024. By all means, feel free to share your new favorite makeup tutorial. However, you should never share makeup itself.
Another fashion don’t? Cheap colored or costume contacts. If you want to spruce up your look by changing your eye color, do it the right way and go through a licensed eye care center. You only get one set of eyes, so you definitely want to take every precaution to keep them healthy.
If we only had one year-round eye care tip to offer, this would be it. It may not be hot out, but the sun can still damage your eyes. In fact, winter is more dangerous than summer in some ways. The glare off of snow can add an extra punch to natural sunlight, reflecting those damaging UV rays.
Invest in a few high-quality pairs of sunglasses, and keep at least one in your car at all times. This is one area where you want to go for function over fashion. There’s nothing wrong with getting some really nice shades, but don’t fall for products that look nice but don’t deliver the protection your eyes need. Those silly party glasses people wear on New Year’s Eve are great for photo opps, but don’t count on them for much actual protection.
Headed for the ski slopes? Don’t skimp on goggles!
Your diet affects nearly every system in your body, as well as every aspect of your overall health. Your eyes are no exception. In a nutshell, you’ll want to opt for lots of brightly colored foods. Orange, red, and yellow veggies, such as peppers, carrots, and pumpkin, are often loaded with beta-carotene. Blue and purple fruits and berries are often packed with antioxidants. Leafy greens also pack a great nutritional punch. Fatty fish, such as salmon, offer healthy Omega-3 fatty acids, which can also help combat that dry eye discomfort we mentioned above.
That doesn’t mean you can’t indulge in those holiday treats. Just don’t go crazy!
As we wind down 2023, many people are looking ahead to 2024, and setting personal goals for the coming year. Put your eyes on the top of that list!
Here are a few things you can do to protect your eyes and vision in the coming year:
If the air in your place is really dry, it may be in your best interests to get a dehumidifier. That alone can go a long way toward providing relief for dry, itchy eyes.
Scented candles, wax burners, cracking fires, and potpourri pots can all make your home look and smell great. However, they can also dry the air out and/or add irritants. If you have sensitive eyes, keep these products to a dull roar.
This is another year-round trip. At this time of year, though, it goes double for anyone who is traveling … especially to those who are flying over the holidays. That dry plane air can suck the moisture out of your body … including your eyes. Drink plenty of water before flights.
All of us here at Grandview Optometry, your Marysville, WA optometry clinic, wish you a wonderful holiday season. Please feel free to contact us with any questions or concerns about your eye health, eye care, or eye wear.