If you’ve ever wondered does cold weather affect eye pressure, then you’re not alone. Most people have a natural tendency to experience higher levels of eye pressure during the colder months of the year, which is why it’s important to pay close attention to the health of your eyes during the winter season. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to prevent the effects of cold weather from getting worse.
Excess Tearing and Runny Eyes
Watery eyes may seem to be a cliche, but they are a real ailment. Not only do they cause discomfort, but they can be embarrassing. Fortunately, there are many treatments for watering eyes.
The most common causes are dry eye syndrome, infections, clogged tear ducts, and other health conditions. You can treat these ailments by taking the right medications.
Oftentimes, watery eyes are an indication that your tears are working correctly. Tears help keep the surface of your eyes moist and can also help heal any injuries. They can be produced in excess, however, and can negatively affect your vision.
Getting enough sleep, drinking plenty of water, and maintaining a healthy diet are all ways to combat eye fatigue. But if you’re still struggling, you should see your doctor.
Eye allergies can also cause watering, redness, and other symptoms. Some allergy medicines can be helpful in treating these symptoms.
Another common cause of watery eyes is aging. As we age, our eyelid tissues relax, which can lead to blocked tear ducts.
Glaucoma is a disease that affects the eyes. If left untreated, it can lead to vision loss and blindness. The condition can be controlled by lowering the pressure in the eye. It can also be treated with eye drops or surgery.
Glaucoma patients should be aware of the effects of winter weather on their eyes. They should be proactive in scheduling their eye doctor’s appointments. Wear sunglasses to protect their eyes. Also, they should avoid salt, saturated fats, and caffeine.
In cold weather, the oxygen particles in the air condense. This causes a build-up of fluid in the eye. When the pressure is increased, damage to the optic nerve may occur faster.
The intraocular pressure (IOP) fluctuates in the seasons. This is higher in healthy eyes than in patients with open-angle glaucoma (POAG). A temporary decline in IOP in the summer can help prevent the progression of glaucoma. However, high IOP in the winter is believed to have a negative effect on the progression of the disease.
If you have dry eyes, you might want to look into a humidifier. Dry air in the winter can be dehydrating, especially if you spend a lot of time indoors.
Cold air can cause dry eyes and even illness. Air vents and heaters can also contribute to the problem. You should also protect your eyes by staying away from direct airflow and avoiding close contact with heating vents.
You should try to drink more fluids to keep your body hydrated. This can increase the amount of moisture your tears have to fight off. It also helps to wear sunglasses that block UV light. Wearing a pair of these will reduce your risk of macular degeneration and cataracts.
Other options include using cool-mist humidifiers. These prevent the nasal passages from drying out and make it easier to breathe at night.
A central humidifier can be installed in your home’s heating system. These can add moisture to the entire house.
Make Regular Visits to Your Optician
If you live in an area that is prone to winter weather, you need to take extra steps to protect your eye health. Cold temperatures can cause your eyes to become dehydrated, which can result in blurry vision. The dry air can also cause pain and discomfort. It’s important to make regular visits to your optician for an exam.
You should always see an optician when you notice changes in your vision. When you go for an appointment, you will be asked about your current activities, your work environment, and your recent health conditions. These questions will help your doctor determine the extent of any damage to your eyes.
A comprehensive exam will include testing your peripheral vision, measuring your cornea’s thickness, and checking the drainage angle of your eye. Your doctor may use fluorescein drops to detect any superficial irregularities on your cornea. This will allow your doctor to diagnose glaucoma, an eye disease that causes damage to the optic nerve. Glaucoma is treatable.