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Guidelines for Protecting Your Eyes This Fall

As the leaves begin to change and the breeze turns a bit chillier, it’s important to prepare your eyes for the autumn weather. Colder conditions and even allergens from foliage can negatively impact your eyes, causing dryness and irritation.

Below are the top five issues that affect eyes during the autumn season, along with tips for how to remedy them:

  1. Harsh Sunlight. Although sunglasses are generally viewed as a summer accessory, they should ideally be worn year-round. They protect the eyes from the bright, glaring sunlight of colder months, and should especially be worn when driving during the daytime. Glasses also shield the delicate eye area from harsh winds, as well as the dust and debris that a strong gust could blow into your face.
  2. Dryness. Cold, static-inducing days can be rough on the eyes, so use a humidifier when indoors to give them a rest from dry outdoor conditions. Hypoallergenic eye creams can be applied to help hydrate the skin around the eyes and prevent it from becoming dry, cracked and itchy. Artificial tears can also be used to provide additional moisture.
  3. Allergies. Autumn’s dead leaves, hayrides and fireplace fumes can trigger allergic reactions. Red, itchy, burning, watery or swollen eyes are common allergy symptoms that can be improved with prescription or over-the-counter antihistamines. Using artificial tears can also help ease the discomfort of eye allergy symptoms.
  4. Heating Vents. Although cold weather can be rough on your eyes, indoor heat can be just as harmful – especially if you wear contact lenses. Indoor heat makes air more dry, which causes your skin’s and eyes’ natural moisture to evaporate faster than usual. Sitting near a heating vent can severely dry out your eyes, so make sure that you remain a comfortable distance away the grate and any other heat source. Drinking plenty of water will also ensure that your skin and eyes stay hydrated and healthy.
  5. Eye Strain. Whether you’ve noticed that it’s getting increasingly harder to read your favorite book when curled up by the fireplace or that you can’t see as well as you used to when driving home because it’s getting dark out sooner and sooner, the end is result is more eyestrain. Your eye doctor will determine if your eye strain is a sign that you need a new prescription or if there is another underlying problem. Be sure to schedule an annual check-up.

Ophthalmologist in Winchester

To learn more about the effects autumn weather can have on your eyes and how to stay protected, contact us today and schedule an appointment. Our offices are located in Winchester, serving Virginia, West Virginia, and Maryland, and you can reach us directly at (540) 722-6200.  We look forward to hearing from you

Posted in: Dry Eye Care/Restasis, Eye Heath

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