The summer months are upon us. While the hot weather is ideal for spending lots of time outdoors, it can also cause dry eyes. There are many ways you can make painful dry eye symptoms worse during the summer, including using air conditioning, engaging in outdoor activities such as hiking and biking which increase your exposure to dirt and dust, and driving with the windows down. Fortunately, there are steps you can take every day to help prevent dry eyes from ruining your summer.
The following tips will help you keep your eyes lubricated and comfortable during the hot summer months:
- Protect your eyes from the sun – Wear sunglasses with broad spectrum UV protection and a hat to protect your eyes from the sun’s harmful UV rays. Direct sunlight exposure without eye protection can result in more rapid tear evaporation.
- Use eyedrops to keep your eyes moist – Apply lubricating eyedrops anytime you feel your eyes getting irritated. Over-the-counter drops at your local drug store will work fine, and they will help keep your eyes moist if you’re not producing enough tears naturally.
- Stay hydrated – The quality and quantity of tears you produce is often impacted by your level of hydration. It’s easier to become dehydrated when you’re outside all day in the hot summer weather. Make sure you drink plenty of water to ensure your body stays hydrated.
- Alter your diet – Foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids will help improve tear production. Increasing your consumption of fatty fish such as salmon or tuna, walnuts, eggs and chia seeds will provide the proper levels of omega-3 fatty acids to keep your eyes lubricated.
- Wash your eyes – The dry, hot summer weather causes items such as dirt, pollen and sand to more easily irritate your eyes. Rinsing your eyes with water on a regular basis can help flush these particles from your eyes.
- Protect your eyes in the pool – The chlorine in pool water can irritate your eyes. Always wear goggles when you’re in the pool. It’s also a good idea to take out contact lenses before swimming to prevent harmful bacteria from getting lodged underneath your lenses.
Contact our Loveland Ophthalmologist
At Kirk Eye Center, we offer the latest and most advanced dry eye treatments to help alleviate your painful dry eye symptoms. We’ll perform a thorough eye exam in order to recommend the right solution for your unique needs.
Please contact Kirk Eye Center using the form on this page or call 970-669-1107 today to schedule an appointment. We serve patients in Loveland, Fort Collins and throughout Northern Colorado.