If you suffer with dry eyes, the summer months can either help or hinder the condition. The humidity we experience in our British summers can help to relieve dry eyes, making it more bearable. However, in some situations the summer months can actually cause dry eyes to worsen.
If the summer months have caused your dry eyes to become even more uncomfortable, read on for the best ways to manage the condition.
What are dry eyes?
Our eyes provide lubrication and moisture to help keep them comfortable and functioning correctly. They do this through our tear system, produced by tear glands in the corner of each eye. When something isn’t right with this system, it can lead to a condition known as dry eyes.
When you have dry eyes, you may notice the following symptoms:
- A gritty feeling in the eye
- Blurry vision
- A feeling that something is in the eye
Occasionally, dry eyes may produce an abnormal number of tears, known as reflex tearing. As a lack of moisture irritates the eyes, the body overcompensates by producing too many tears. Unlike normal tears, they don’t coat the surface of the eye. So, they won’t relieve the condition.
What causes dry eyes?
There are a few potential causes of dry eyes such as imbalance within the tear flow system, air conditioning, the ageing process, and side effects of medication.
Cataract surgery can also cause dry eyes, or can make the symptoms of dry eyes worsen due to the disruption of tear film. However, this is usually only temporary, and it is important to speak to your eye doctor about any changes or symptoms. Importantly, getting to the root cause of your dry eyes will be key to treating them.
Managing dry eyes over the summer
During the summer months, there are a few things that can exacerbate dry eyes. If the humidity is low, the dry climate can cause the body to produce fewer tears. Excessive use of air conditioning can also make the condition worse, as can chlorine in the pool.
If you want to prevent your dry eyes from irritating you this summer, you should…
Wear sunglasses – Sunglasses can help to protect your eyes against the sun’s rays, dry air, and wind.
Invest in eye drops – Eye drops that you can purchase over the counter can help to treat dry eye during the summer. However, you may need stronger drops on prescription.
Wear specialised contact lenses – If you wear contact lenses, they can dry out the eyes further, proving uncomfortable to wear during summer. Ask your eye doctor for specialist contact lenses that are made from different materials.
Try out an approved nasal spray – Some approved nasal sprays can help to increase tear production and they can be used twice a day.
Having your eyes regularly checked
If you are worried about the impact the weather is having on your dry eyes this summer, having regular eye check-ups is essential. This will help to detect any problems early, as well as enable you to take precautionary measures to protect your eyes.
Get help managing your dry eyes this summer by booking a consultation with Mr Zaid Shalchi today.