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Winter Weather and your Eyes

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Winter weather means colder temperatures, winds, and lack of moisture which can wreak havoc on your eyes. Cold outdoor air and heated indoor air can cause your eyes to dry out.  Here are tips to take care of your eye during winter.

  1. Drink enough water. Mild dehydration can cause your eyes to dry out.  Consume fluid-rich foods such as soup, fruits and veggies.
  1. Lubricate your eyes with artificial tears.  The tears on your eyes evaporate much more quickly during the winter months.  Artificial tears can help keep your tears on the eyes longer.  Not all artificial tears are made equal.  See your eye doctor to find out which eye drops are the best for you.  
  1. Incorporate Omega-3s into your diet. Dry eyes is caused by inflammation of the tear glands.  Omega-3s helps reduce inflammation and increase tear production to lubricate the eyes.  Foods such as salmon, cod, and herring are rich in Omega-3s.  Taking a Omega-3 supplement can also help your eyes as well as your heart.  Ask your doctor which dry eye supplement is right for you.  
  1. Use a humidifier. During the winter season, the humidity in your home can drop to 35-55 percent leading to dry eyes.  One of the best ways to increase humidity is to purchase a humidifier.  
  1. Wear sunglasses. Heading to the mountains? Snow and ice create reflective surfaces that can harm your eyes with ultraviolet light (UV).  Without sunglasses, you will experience glare, eyestrain, frequent blinking, and other discomfort.  Always wear sunglasses or goggles while outdoors to protect your eyes from the sun.  Your eyes can get sunburned, a condition known as photokeratitis.  Fortunately, it is temporary but can be painful.  Protect your eyes from UV light.  

Winter can be irritating to the eyes, if you are experiencing and problems, we are just a phone call away. 925-743-1222.


Written by Dr. Michael Duong

Dr. Duong received his bachelor’s degree in biology with a minor in chemistry at San Jose State University. He then attended Pennsylvania College of Optometry and received his Doctor of Optometry in 2009.
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