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Tips For Battling Dry Eyes This Winter Season

November 13, 2012

Keep your vision clear and comfortable during the colder months.

The winter season brings with it many changes to our daily routines based on the cold weather outside―bundling up each and every time we leave the house, preparing our vehicles and homes for the chilling winds and ice outside, and even prepping our bodies for the dry, bone-chilling weather that begins sweeping the country in late November.

However, our belongings and core body temperature are not the only things that need to be prepped and prepared for the side effects of winter. Between the harsh winter winds outside and the dry heat that many of us radiate throughout out homes all season long, dry eyes that burn and itch are one by-product of winter that many people cannot seem to escape.

While many people often picture the winter season as “the wet season”―slushy puddles on the street, piles of snow in the driveway, ice melting off our windshields―the overall atmosphere is actually very dry during this season, which leaves our bodies feeling much more irritated than usual. You may notice this first hand on your skin, as your body constantly craves the moisture that is usually present in warmer months.

The moisture evaporation in the air can also quickly dry out our tear glands in our eyes, causing them to itch and burn. This is due to the lack of protective fluids which usually maintain a helpful moist coating around our eyes.

So, how can you amp up the moisture content in your environment and protect your eyes against the annoying itch and sting of dry eyes? Here are just a few helpful tips for combating dry eyes this holiday season:

Create Moisture

One of the best ways to prevent your eyes from drying out when you are sat at home is to add some moisture back into the air. Many people across the country have dry heating systems which suck a lot of the moisture back into the air, so it can be beneficial to purchase a humidifier to add some moist air back into your home. Humidifiers can also help to prevent fluid evaporation from both your eyes and skin, which will stop the itching before it even starts.

Shield Your Eyes

Whenever you are outdoors, whether you are quickly making a trip to and from your car, or you are outside for an extended period of time, you should always take protective measures to shield your eyes from the wind and frigid air. While sunglasses are the best way to protect your eyes from both wind and excess light, a brimmed hat or hood can also help to guard your face from the whipping winds and can help to prevent evaporation of your eye’s tear film.

Cut Back On Caffeine

While there may be nothing you want more on a chilly winter morning that a delicious cup of coffee, drinking an excess amount of this warm liquid can actually lead to dry eyes. This is because coffee contains a mild diuretic which causes a lack of moisture in our tear film. Cutting back on coffee consumption just in the winter months can do wonders for dry, itchy eyes.

Do you have any more tips for preventing dry eyes in the chilly, windy winter season? Be sure to share your suggestions with us in the comments below!


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