Winters can be harsh, particularly on the eyes. Although the holiday season brings plenty of fun activities, the cold weather can lead to certain health concerns. Colder months are peak times when you develop health issues like a cold, cough, and runny nose.
Low humidity levels in the air and long nights during the winter cause the pupils to dilate. This can lead to eye strain and fatigue. Additionally, low temperatures may cause blood vessels to contract, impairing your vision.
Common Winter Eye Problems and Their Prevention
We will discuss some eye problems that can occur during winter, along with a few tips on how to prevent these eye problems.
- Eye Dryness
The cold, windy weather can quickly dry up the eyes when you are outside. Your eyes are not only susceptible to dryness from the cold, but indoor heating as well. Therefore, you should practice preventative measures even when you’re indoors.
Prevention: A Warm Compress
Apply a heated cotton pad for two to three minutes on each eye. The warmth stimulates the eyes to produce enough moisture. Additionally, it provides relief for irritated, itchy, and swollen eyes. As a preventative measure, protect your eyes from sources of direct heat, such as car heaters, and protect your face from direct airflow.
- Redness in Eyes
Red eye can occur due to many reasons, such as fatigue, seasonal allergy, tearing, blurry vision, and infection. All these problems cause itchy and red eyes, which may lead to vision loss.
Prevention: Use a Humidifier
To prevent red eyes, use a humidifier during harsh winters. It restores moisture in the atmosphere, which will soothe your red itchy eyes. Run a humidifier at night when the atmosphere is more prone to dryness to prevent redness.
- Light Sensitivity
During the winter months, you may be susceptible to developing light sensitivity due to snow blindness. That’s because the UV glare from bright surfaces, water, or snow can lead to inflammation in the cornea. Moreover, the sun is at a lower angle during these months, allowing rays to hit your windows while you drive. This could be extremely dangerous while driving, which is why some towns take preventative measures to close down routes at specific times of the day.
UV-Protected Sunglasses are a solution. Wear sunglasses if you’re outside on a chilly day to shield your eyes from the sun glare and the wind. In the winter, your eyes have a higher risk of UV exposure because of sunlight reflecting off the snow.
If you intend to go skiing or ice skating, you should wear UV-protected sunglasses or goggles to protect your eyes from dangerous ultraviolet (UV) radiation.
Winters can be challenging for your eyes because of the harsh weather and dry winds that may cause itchiness, dryness, redness, and tears to your eyes. You can protect your eyes in the winter by running a humidifier to control the atmosphere and warming surroundings. UV-protected sunglasses are ideal for light sensitivity, and you can use them to prevent sunlight and air pressure from entering your eyes.