“Eye Care” For You “How Does Cold Weather Affect My Eyes?”


Dr. Parker-Herriott
Dr. Parker-Herriott

As much as the temperatures have fluctuated recently in the low country, many of you may be wondering why your eyes have been “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 tear film which leads to the symptoms described. It sounds rhetorical that the eyes can tear, or run water, when they are dry, but it’s true.

Your tears are made up of 3 layers—the oil, water, and mucous layers. Changes in the 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 have dry eye symptoms.

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 also results in dry eyes.

The treatment for dry eyes can range from changing your diet to using 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. In many cases, the medications you take may also be a culprit for having dry eye symptoms. So be sure to inform your eye care provider about all the medications you take.

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 you eye care provider ASAP.

If you do not have an eye care provider, I invite you to visit

EnVision Eye Care 321 W. Montgomery Crossroads, Savannah

(near Hunter Golf Course and VA Medical Clinic). For appointments, call (912)

927-0707 and visit us at www.envisionsavannah.com


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