Eight Ways to Reduce Dry Eyes During Winter

You know how annoying dry eyes can be if you have them. Though dry eyes rarely impair vision, they can be uncomfortable. Dry eyes will impair your quality of life and make you unhappy in the most severe cases.

While dry eyes can occur at any time of year, they are more common in the winter. Most people will, fortunately, alleviate their symptoms at home.

Symptoms of Dry Eyes

ways to reduce dry eyes during winter

Dry eye syndrome symptoms can vary from mild to severe. Dry eyes can affect anyone, however, certain factors, according to the Mayo Clinic, increase the risk, including the following:
Getting older: Tear development may be insufficient as people age to keep their eyes moist.
Changes in hormones: Tear development can be reduced as a result of hormonal changes.
Conditions in the environment: Dry eyes can be exacerbated by environmental factors, such as dry or cold weather. Dry eyes can also be caused by irritants in the environment, such as smoke.
Prescriptions: As a side effect, some drugs can trigger dry eyes. Cold drugs, for example, may be to blame.

The following are some of the signs and symptoms of dry eyes:
● Mucus discharge from the eyes that can become crusty
● Excessive tearing
● Eyes that are irritated or painful
● Eyes that are bright red
● Sensitivity to light

Getting Rid of Dry Eyes

ways to reduce dry eyes during winter

Use eye drops: Eye drops may usually be used four to five times a day, but check to see if they contain preservatives, as this can impact the frequency prescribed.

Use an eye ointment: Face ointment is a thicker version of eye drops that is applied to the lower lash line. Because of the thickness, it can trigger blurry vision for a few minutes, so use it at night, right before bed.

Consult your doctor about drugs: If your dry eyes are serious, discuss your medications with your doctor. You may be able to take a different drug that does not affect your tear development. Do not quit taking your prescribed medications without first consulting your doctor.

Do not smoke: Smoking irritates the eyes and may exacerbate dryness. And, as far as possible, avoid secondhand smoke.

Use a humidifier: Use a humidifier in your bedroom at night to add moisture to the air. It can be particularly beneficial during the winter when the heat from your furnace can cause the air to become drier.

Keep the thermostat at a low setting: When it is cold outside, we want to raise the temperature. The added warmth can make the air too dry, exacerbating dry eye symptoms. Maintain a reasonable temperature on your thermostat that is not too hot.

Wear sunglasses outside: Dry eyes can be caused by the sun and wind at any time of year, including the winter. Even on overcast winter days, ultraviolet rays from the sun can damage your eyes, that is why sunglasses should be worn outdoors all year long.

Consult an ophthalmologist: Consult an eye doctor if the symptoms of dry eye syndrome do not improve after following the steps outlined above. Additional therapies and medications can be prescribed by an eye doctor to help alleviate symptoms.

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