Your autumn habits could be giving you dry eyes

Oct 17, 2019 in Eye Care

Colourful Autumn trees

The days are getting shorter. Crisp, chilly evenings are becoming the norm once again. Here’s why it’s still important to protect your eyesight in the autumn.

The start of autumn means your eyes are subjected to a new set of hazards. Here are our tips for avoiding dry eyes into the autumn and winter months.

Your eyes are at risk from… your central heating?

As the temperature drops your central heating will kick in. So far, so toasty. And of course, it’s important to stay warm when it’s cold outside but that extra heating also means more dry air in your house or flat. This can cause your eyes to become dry, itchy and uncomfortable.

In fact, if you have any of the following symptoms, you might have dry eye syndrome:

  • Dryness
  • Itching
  • Redness
  • Blurry vision
  • Excessive watering
cat on radiator central heating

What is dry eye syndrome?

There are two types of Dry Eye. Evaporative dry eye - where the tears evaporate off the surface of the eye too quickly - usually due to a lack of oils on the eye. And aqueous deficiency dry eye - which is where we don't produce enough tear fluid.

People can have one type or the other, or a mix of the two causes. This can lead to the symptoms mentioned above.

Your chances of developing dry eye syndrome increases if you are a contact lens wearer, over 50, a smoker, alcohol drinker or if you have inflammatory conditions like blepharitis, arthritis or lupus.

If you’re concerned you might be suffering from dry eye syndrome, or your eyes are feeling increasingly tired after a long day, the best thing to do is come in and see us so we can advise you on the best treatment. Book an appointment over the phone on 0800 40 20 20, online or pop into your local Leightons branch.

In the meantime, here are some tips to help keep your eyes hydrated and healthy:

  • Drink lots of water and eat a healthy balanced diet
  • Use eye drops (we can help you choose the right drops)
  • Get a humidifier or invest in some indoor plants
  • Stop smoking and cut down on alcohol
  • Take breaks when using a computer for long periods

Autumn brings other risks, too

In the height of summer, the sun spends more time high up in the sky, away from your direct line of vision. But now that autumn’s here and the days are getting shorter, the low, afternoon sun is hard to avoid (it’s a big problem for drivers).

So, while you might think it’s time to pack away your sunglasses along with your bathing suit, you might want to think again. Even on cloudy days it’s essential to protect your eyes and help lessen your chances of developing cataracts and macular degeneration with a pair of good quality sunglasses.

Why not check out our range of prescription sunglasses and stay on trend this autumn.

screentime office at night

Finally, a reminder to take screen breaks

No one likes having to stay late at the office, but did you realise it could be damaging your eyes and increasing your risk of developing dry eyes? With the evenings getting darker, your eyes will rely more on unnatural, bright office lighting. So, remember to take regular breaks to give your eyes a rest.

Concerned that you’re developing dry eyes syndrome? Book an appointment with us online, over the phone on 0800 40 20 20, or in store today.