‘EYE CARE’ FOR YOU’ “How Does Cold Weather Affect My Eyes?”

Dr. J.A Parkers
Dr. J.A Parkers
The temperature in the low country will be fluctuating in the coming weeks and many of you may be wondering why your eyes are “feeling” and “seeing” a little differently.

The atmosphere around us (whether hot or cold) can cause dry eye symptoms. These symptoms include a dry, scratchy, gritty feeling in the eyes, blurred vision, and often times teary eyes. When the temperature changes, it causes an imbalance in the tears which leads to the symptoms described. It sounds rhetorical that the eyes can tear up more when they are dry, but it is true.

Your tears are made of 3 layers— oil, water, and mucous layers. Changes in temperature around us can result in an imbalance in these components of the tear film. The most common form of dry eyes results from a reduction in the oily tear layer. When this occurs, the eyes will become dry.

Dry eyes are more common in women than men due to hormonal fluctuations.

It is also more common to have dry eyes if you sit at a computer for long periods of time, if you do a lot of reading, or if you are a contact lens wearer. Poor or inadequate blinking results in dry eyes. A common side effect to some medications is dry eyes. Therefore, it is important to mention to your eye doctor all of medications you are taking.

Treatment for dry eyes ranges from changing your diet to using proper eye drops. In some cases, plugs may be needed to help the eyes maintain moisture. Oral medications, including vitamins, may also be required to help reduce inflammation that starts from having dry eyes. New advanced treatment is also now available for dry eye syndrome. Ask your eye care provider about other treatment options.

The recent blurry vision changes you have noticed may not be because your glasses need to be changed. It could simply be the effects of dry eye syndrome. Early treatment and intervention is the key to keeping the eyes from experiencing any of these symptoms. See your eye care provider before the end of this year. REMEMBER TO USE YOUR INSURANCE BENEFITS BEFORE DECEMBER 31ST If you do not have an eye care provider, visit us at En- Vision Eye Care 321 W. Montgomery Crossroads For appointments, call (912) 927-0707 www.envisionsavannah.com

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