Summertime Dry Eye
To say where I live is hot is a complete understatement in the summer. Without air conditioning, this place would be completely unbearable.
So, when one does have to make a trip – like from air-conditioned building to air-conditioned car for example. You take actions to get cold. In the car that means you point that air vent right at your (almost sweaty) face!
This may be a great strategy for cooling off but, if you wear contact lenses like I do, it’s not that great of an idea for your eyes.
Did you know that the dry air coming out of those air-conditioning vents in your car (or even at home or while you are out shopping, etc…) can suck the moisture right out of your contact lenses?
Most contact lenses are designed to stay comfortable as you go through everyday activities and climates. But, the artificial humidity-free air blowing out of vents everywhere can lead to a serious case of dry eye.
So, what do you do? Well, here are 3 easy things to remember when your eyes get a little dry in the cool breeze of the air-conditioning this summer:
Watch Your Aim
Yes, I know the cold air feels much better on your neck and face than it does on your feet. But, for the sake of your eyes, use your vehicles lowest vents if you can. If not, point the ones that are head level as low as they will go so they aren’t shooting air directly into your eyes.
If you are going to be in direct fire of the air-conditioning blower for an extended period of time, consider ways you can shield your eyes from the arctic blast. If you are driving, wear your sunglasses (hey, you should have them on for the UV protection anyway!). If you are inside, maybe take your lenses out for a few hours and wear your glasses to preserve some of your eye’s natural moisture.
Always carry some great eye drops with you in the summer so you are ready if the dryness starts to get to you. Your America’s Best optometrist can recommend some of the most effective brands for your specific type of contact lenses.
Leaving dry eye untreated for too long could lead to other, more serious eye problems such as a corneal abrasion. So, be sure to use these tips if your dry eye causes some discomfort, but make a trip to your optometrist if your dry eye is chronic or more severe.