Simple Tips to Keep Your Eyes Healthy This Winter
The winter season is upon us, and with it comes snow, cold temperatures, wind, and more time spent inside. Environmental factors during the winter may cause dryness, irritation, and other problems for your eyes, but Greene & Greene Optometry in Watertown, MA will share some simple tips to help you maintain healthy eyes this winter!
Wear sunglasses outdoors
Sunglasses are important to wear year-round, not just during the summer. While the days may be shorter, your eyes still need to be protected from UVA and UVB rays from the sun when you’re outside. If your winter plans include spending time outside in the snow, such as a ski trip, wear protective goggles which provide UV protection. Snow and ice are reflective, and prolonged, unprotected exposure to the snow and ice may cause a temporary but painful condition called photokeratitis, where the sun’s UV rays damage the front surface of the eyes, much like a sunburn on the skin.
Take regular breaks from screens
Winter weather tends to make us spend more time inside, potentially on our digital devices, even more than usual. If you’re using digital devices such as computer screens or phones, it’s important to give your eyes regular breaks throughout the day.
Avoid focusing on one thing for too long by taking short breaks every 20 minutes or so—this will give your eyes time to rest and adjust. It’s also recommended to use the 20-20-20 rule – every twenty minutes look away from the screen for at least twenty seconds at something about twenty feet away. This will help reduce eye strain caused by staring at screens all day long.
Get the lighting right in your home
Try to maximize the natural light while spending time at home during the day, and add warm, white lights that are gentle on your eyes. If you’re working from home in front of a computer, make sure you have adequate lighting at your workspace, so you aren’t straining to see while you work.
Central heating systems can be rough on your eyes! Drink enough water every day to stay hydrated, try to get a little bit of fresh air every day, and consider using a humidifier to add moisture to the air in your home to prevent symptoms of dry eye.
Get an eye exam
Regular eye exams are essential for maintaining good vision and overall eye health.
During an exam, an optometrist will check for signs of any ocular diseases such as glaucoma or cataracts which may have developed since your last visit. They will also assess how well you can see both near and far so they can provide you with updated prescriptions if necessary. If it’s been more than a year since your last eye exam, winter is a great time to see an optometrist to check your vision and screen for eye diseases and dry eye disease.
Staying proactive about keeping your eyes healthy during this winter season is essential! By wearing suitable sunglasses outdoors, taking breaks when using digital devices, and keeping up with regular eye exams, you’ll be sure to protect yourself from any possible ocular issues this winter season.
The eye doctors at Greene & Greene Optometry in Watertown, MA provide personalized eye health and vision care for children, adults, and seniors. If it’s been more than a year since your last eye exam, give us a call to schedule an appointment.