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Madeira Optical
Madeira Optical
Madeira Optical
Madeira Optical
Madeira Optical
Madeira Optical
Madeira Optical

Preventing Seasonal Dry Eyes

It’s summer in Cincinnati full of hot and hazy days. Are you currently dealing with dry eye syndrome or chronic dry eyes? Dry eye is typically characterized by poor quality tears or insufficient tears. It is a serious condition and can lead to damage to the eyes or infection if left untreated. If you frequently experience symptoms of dry eye, we recommend that you see your eye doctor for an evaluation.

 

Allergies or Dry Eye



Sometimes, seasonal allergens can lead to symptoms that are quite similar to those of chronic dry eye. Some of the symptoms these conditions have in common include grittiness, redness, and dryness. Itching is a common symptom of allergies, while burning is more likely with dry eyes. If you experience dry or irritated eyes, especially during fall and spring when there are more allergens outside, you need to see your eye doctor for a tear film diagnostic, an accurate diagnosis, and a treatment plan.



If you do suffer from dry eye syndrome, recent advancements have created plenty of very effective options. Dry eye treatments start with simple lifestyle changes like drinking more water or using a humidifier. Over-the-counter vitamins and medications are the next step. For moderate to severe dry eyes, procedures like punctal plugs, low-level light therapy (LLLT), and intense pulsed light (IPL) are very effective treatments. But what if you are experiencing seasonal allergy-related dry eyes?

 

Seasonal Dry Eyes



Cincinnati is centered in a river valley and that presents unique challenges with allergies. Climate and weather can have a huge impact on the health of your eyes. If you often suffer from symptoms of chronic dry eye, seasonal changes can cause you to experience a year-long roller coaster of relief and discomfort. We get every season here. Seasonal allergens, wind, humidity, and temperatures can all affect dry eyes, which can cause your symptoms to increase and decrease in severity.

 

How to Prevent Seasonal Dry Eye



According to studies, complaints about dry eyes vary significantly depending on the season. Fortunately, you can do something about it.

 

Summer



If you suffer from dry eyes, summer is typically a vacation from this condition’s symptoms. According to research findings, there is a significant reduction in dry eye complaints during the summer months, and people report fewer and less severe symptoms. This may be due to increased humidity or warmth in the air which helps keep eyes moist. Dry eyes in summer may be due to an inability to generate enough tears. There are several potential treatments to help treat symptoms and/or open meibomian glands to create more tears.

 

Spring



Our area gets a lot of pollen. It is common for our patio set to be covered in a fine dusting of tree pollen. The presence of allergens during the spring months is one of the biggest reasons why symptoms of dry eye tend to worsen. If you suffer from chronic dry eye that tends to get worse in spring, chances are that you may have allergies as well. Therefore, you should find out from your doctor whether allergy medication will help. Sometimes, you may choose to take allergy medicine every day throughout the spring season to manage your symptoms.

 

Fall



Have you ever noticed how your eyes feel at the end of your kid's soccer game on a brisk windy day? Several factors can lead to a worsening of symptoms of dry eye. These include drier, colder air and allergens. One term used to describe some common allergens of early fall is hay fever. Hay fever can trigger or worsen dry eye symptoms. Thus, outdoor activities during this season may worsen your reaction to allergens.

 

You may want to avoid spending too much time outside if you suffer from chronic dry eye, especially on days when your eyes feel irritated. You should also avoid engaging in activities such as raking leaves and yard work that can stir up allergens.

 

Winter



The cold air in winter can also worsen dry eye symptoms. The air outside is drier, and so is the air inside due to indoor heating. Unless you have a humidifier, your inside air could be as low as 20% humidity. In the summer it is often 3 times higher or more. Consider a room humidifier for your bedroom even if you have a whole house unit. Additionally, this is the season of the flu and colds. Taking over-the-counter cold medicines and decongestants can create or exacerbate dry eye symptoms.


 

To learn more about preventing seasonal dry eyes, available treatments, or to receive a comprehensive assessment, visit the doctors of Madeira Optical at our clinic in Cincinnati, Ohio. You can also call (513) 561-7076 to book an appointment today or schedule online.

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