Winter has set in and anyone who suffers with dry eye will be fully aware already. Generally speaking, Dry Eye cannot be cured, so it is really important to control and manage it effectively.
Dry eye becomes worse in the winter due to several factors.
Central Heating: As temperatures drop, we all race to the thermostat to keep the house warm, but in doing so we decrease the humidity in the rooms, which contributes to a drying effect of not just the eyes, but skin too.
Low Humidity Levels: It is common knowledge that winter and low temperatures bring lower humidity, meaning there is less moisture in the air. Cold weather coupled with walking into central heated homes speeds up the evaporation of tears, leaving your eyes feeling uncomfortable, irritable and generally a real nuisance.
Wind Wind Wind: Often wondered why your eyes stream when it is windy? As wind accelerates the evaporation of tears from the surface of your eyes (which would make them dry) your eyes produce excess tears to try and combat this. Wearing glasses or sunglasses, can help to keep that wind out of your eyes.
Here are some of our top tips to help manage and prevent Dry Eye's:
- Blink: An easy and cheap way to help naturally lubricate the eyes. Wether your hard at work on the computer, or watching television, sometimes we focus so hard, we forget to blink.
- Keep Hydrated: Drinking water helps us to maintain moisture levels - which also includes the tear film which helps lubricate they eyes. The NHS recommends drinking 6-8 glasses of water a day. if you struggle with water, stick some cordial in to liven it up.
- Shield Yourself: Protect your eyes from the weather by wearing spectacles with a UV coating, or your sunglasses. This way not only do you have protection against harmful UV, but it also helps to keep the wind out of your eyes.
- Supplements: When you visit your local optician, check out the range of supplements they have in store. Many of us take vitamins, but do you take vitamins tailored to promote eye health? Omega 3 promotes a healthy tear film, but consider finding one that also includes Lutein and Zeaxanthin, which work against age related vision issues, with the macular and retina. One particular vitamin I like is Viteyes 2 plus Omega -3 On first glance they are not cheap, however the price is for a 3 month supply and you can get a discount if you go on a direct debit.
- Humidifiers: Put some moisture back into the air with a Humidifier. Not only does this help the eyes, but also your skin, throat and much more. They come in a whole array or price points, and some are available at a relatively good price, a real winter investment.