As the winter season creeps back into our lives, it can really do a number on our bodies — especially our eyes.
“It’s the most wonderful time of the year,” we’re told — presumably because of all the fun gifts we might get, right? But the Northwest Ohio winter comes bearing a variety of unique seasonal issues, like dry air and increased light sensitivity. Not so wonderful for your eye health.
Thankfully there are a few things you can do to make sure your eye health doesn’t take a nosedive in the upcoming months. This list of five helpful eye tips will help you keep your eyes healthy and happy this wintry season.
This is a big one for most people, which is why we bring it up first. The cold weather outside combines with the dry air from heating systems inside, creating a perfect storm for dry, itchy eyes.
For most people, dry eyes are an uncomfortable nuisance. For others, chronic dryness and itchiness can cause severe irritation and damage to the eyes. We all might crave the warmth of a radiator when the weather outside is frightful, but we must remember to consider our eye health and keep some distance between us and the heating system. Bundling up with layers rather than crowding around the heater might save you loads of eye discomfort.
If you suffer from wintry dryness, invest in a good over-the-counter eye drop, and be sure to use it regularly to help keep your eyes lubricated.
Winter is notorious for being hard on the eyes, and we aren’t just talking about the cold winds that can rob them of moisture. Just because the winter sun isn’t as hot as in summer doesn’t mean it can’t do significant damage. Snowy conditions actually double the sun’s effects, as ultraviolet (UV) rays both enter your eyes from above and reflect off the snow into your eyes.
If you have prescription glasses, a pair of prescription sunglasses is a great investment for the winter months. In any case, be sure to wear sunglasses that block 99–100% of UV light, even on days that are overcast. And throw on a hat or visor if conditions are particularly bright.
One of the biggest causes of dry, itchy eyes in the winter is dehydration, and the dry air indoors isn’t helping anything. Thankfully, there’s one delicious solution to help keep your eyes moistened: green tea.
As far as health benefits go, green tea is one of the best beverages out there. Antioxidants like vitamin C, lutein and zeaxanthin help prevent heart disease and cancer.
But the protection green tea gives your eyes is the most striking. Scientists are finding that drinking green tea can help keep your eyes sharper and healthier much longer. The tea leaves contain flavonoids, which contribute to prevention of some types of glaucoma, cataracts and macular degeneration. One type of flavonoid even boosts UV ray protection in the retina.
You might be more of a coffee drinker, but with all the eye health benefits green tea touts, it might just be worth it to incorporate this super beverage into your day throughout the winter.
Winter brings a host of outdoor hazards that aren’t a concern the rest of the year. Ice, slush, falling snow, and collected dirt and debris can all damage the eye’s soft tissue if you aren’t careful.
One way to protect your eyes from both outdoor hazards and harsh UV rays is to pick up a pair of prescription goggles with UV protection. If you plan on being outdoors this winter — and especially if you plan on participating in high-speed activities like skiing, snowboarding, snowmobiling or others — be sure to wear appropriate eye protection at all times.
Contact Perrysburg Eye Center today if you are interested in learning more about our prescription sunglasses or goggles for outdoor use this winter season.
This may seem like an easy one, but it’s also the one most people get wrong. Dry, itchy eyes not only can cause irritation and inflammation, but they can also be a sign of something else going on with your eye tissue. Even worse, chronic dry eyes and the abrasion caused by dry eyelids opening and closing can cause scratching, clouding and longer-term issues with the tissue. If you feel like the dryness and itching is becoming worse, or you begin to notice increased irritation or clouded vision, call Perrysburg Eye Center immediately and get in to see us.
An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, and your eyes are no exception — especially when they’re at increased risk for dryness, irritation and UV damage this winter. Take some precautions to keep your eyes happy and healthy this winter, and make sure to check in with the eye and vision experts at Perrysburg Eye Center at the first sign of trouble.
Get more information about quality eyewear and eye care by calling Perrysburg Eye Center at (419) 874-3125, schedule your first visit as a patient, and make sure to stop by our optical shop for the functional, affordable and fashionable eyewear!