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Hay Fever Season: How to Fight Dry Eye When You Step Outside 

Hay Fever, dry eye disease, or something else entirely?

 

Are dry eyes ruining your morning run? Do you struggle on your commute? Scared to wear makeup now for fear of it streaming down your face by the time you step into the office? Don’t worry, you’re not alone – and this doesn’t need to be a constant battle. 

 

Dry Eye or hay fever?

 

Often, people find that dry eyes are worse in the morning or before they go to bed. The first step to tackling your health problems is to work out its root cause. It could be dry eye disease causing your troubles, or it could be hay fever and allergy symptoms. 

 

Hay fever and seasonal allergies affect everyone in different ways. When hay fever season starts up (usually late March to September) you’ll see the symptoms worsening. From sneezing fits, to a runny nose and dry itchy eyes, hay fever is caused by an allergy to pollen which is a common pollutant in the air. There is no current cure for hay fever, but you can take a medication called antihistamines to lessen its effect. [1]  

 

Field with butterflies

 

Some people do experience hay fever in the winter. This can be due to a number of reasons like living in a warmer climate where plants may not go dormant and therefore release pollen all year long. If you suffer from Allergic Rhinitis (which pollen is the most common cause of) you can also experience similar hay fever symptoms due to mould, pet dander, and even dust mites – all of which may feel worse due to being indoors more! Often people will mistake this for a common cold, but if you’re feeling itchy, think hay fever. If you’re feeling achy, think cold. 

 

It can be really tricky to work out if your symptoms are caused by dry eye disease or hay fever, but there are some key distinctions. If your dry eye symptoms improve in autumn and winter, it’s likely caused by a pollen allergy, rather than dry eye disease. Additionally, if you’ve also experienced cold-like symptoms such as a dry throat and runny nose, and you’re not experiencing a sensitivity to light or a gritty feeling in your eyes, it’s more likely to be hay fever and allergy symptoms. [2] 

 

Other conditions that could be causing your dry eye

 

If your dry eye symptoms hit before you’ve even had a chance to take a step out of the door though, then it’s time to consider other possible causes. Nocturnal Lagophthalmos can make it difficult to close your eye completely at night, leading to air exposure which worsens dry eye symptoms in the morning. [3] This condition has to be treated properly or it can lead to impaired vision. [4] 

 

Another possible explanation for painful, inflamed eyes in the morning is Blepharitis which is an inflammation along the edges of the eyelid. You may find your eyelids are crusty and itchy when you wake up, and you can even have issues opening your eyes. [5]

 

 

Other possible explanations for your dry eyes in the mornings

You may even find that certain medications that you take at bedtime can cause dry eye symptoms in the morning. Even antihistamines that you may take to lessen the symptoms of hay fever during the day can cause eyes to feel dry in the morning. [6]

 

Sleeping with air conditioning and heating units can also affect the way your eyes feel and your dry eye symptoms in the morning, as can your environment. [7] This can be a simple fix that will go a long way to improving your life. 

 

Many factors can cause dry, itchy, and even sore eyes when you wake up. Hormonal fluctuations and age can also contribute, so if you’ve noticed that you’re tearing up in the mornings more often as you approach your 60s, you’re not alone and you don’t need to worry. 

 

Luckily, many of the treatments for dry eye syndrome can soothe these symptoms and leave you feeling ready to start your day. 

 

Treating Dry Eye in the mornings 

 

If your symptoms most closely match dry eye and they worsen in the mornings then there are ways you can take action and treat it. Create a morning and evening routine that will help rather than harm. The hot air from hair dryers can worsen eye dryness so towel dry your hair instead. Use eye drops before bed to moisten your eyes. You can even wash your eyelids and use a warm compress if you’re looking to soothe chronic dry eye symptoms. [8]

 

Take a look at our 10 Tips To Ease Dry Eye at Night blog, as many of these tips will relieve symptoms the morning after as well. [9] 

 

Whether it’s hay fever and seasonal allergies, or dry eye disease, eye drops can definitely help you feel a little brighter and soothe painful, itchy eyes. VisuXL® Gel eye drops can lubricate your eyes for up to twelve hours using a thicker moisture barrier. Use them day and night! 

 

 

The best way to fight dry eyes when you step outside is good preparation. That includes working out what’s causing your irritation so you best know how to tackle it. To fight dry eyes in the morning a great routine for the morning and night will help relieve symptoms, as well as to make sure you’re supporting your overall eye health. Follow these tips for the hay fever season and beyond to feel ready to take on the day without dry eye disease bringing you down. 

 

We hope this article has answered your Dry Eye questions. However, if not please reach out to us on our socials, join our community on Facebook and Instagram, and discover more advice to help your eyes.

 

References

  1. NHS Inform, “Hay fever.”, Last Accessed November 2023.
  2. NI Direct, “Hay fever”, Last Accessed November 2023.
  3. Lazarus, Russel. “Why is Dry Eye Worse in the Mornings?” Optometrists.org, Last Accessed November 2023.
  4. Eye Clinic London, “Waking Up With Dry Eyes: Causes & Treatment.”, Last Accessed November 2023.
  5. Mayo Clinic, “Blepharitis – Symptoms & Causes.”, Last Accessed November 2023.
  6. Professional Vision | Ellicott City Eye Doctors, Eye Exam, Eyewear, “Why Are My Eyes Dry in the Morning?”, Last Accessed November 2023.
  7. A. Vogel, “3 Reasons you have Dry Eyes in the Morning.” Last Accessed November 2023.
  8. Griff, Ann Marie, “9 Tips for Your Daily Routine with Chronic Dry Eye”, Healthline, Last Accessed November 2023.
  9. Wang, Michael TM. “10 Tips to Ease Dry Eye at Night.” Dry Eye And Me, Last Accessed 6 November 2023.
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Can the Environment Cause Dry Eyes?

You may have noticed that the change of seasons or new surroundings has suddenly worsened your Dry Eye symptoms. This is because your environment can trigger Dry Eye syndrome, with factors like the weather, climate, and air quality all contributing. Let’s explore some of the specific environmental factors to bear in mind when trying to improve your condition. 

 

Frost on grass

Can the time of year impact dry eyes?

Changes to the air temperature, humidity, and air quality come with the changing seasons. So it’s only natural that throughout certain seasons your eyes may become more irritated and dry. Spring can bring about seasonal allergies such as hay fever when allergens in the air are more prominent. When the pollen count is high, many Dry Eye sufferers will find that their symptoms worsen. However, we’d always recommend speaking to your doctor if this is the case, as often over-the-counter medication such as antihistamines can make Dry Eye symptoms worse as a side effect. 

In addition to this, colder months throughout winter can irritate dry eyes the most when compared to the other seasons. This is because of the cold air outside, combined with indoor heating making a very dry environment. Indoor humidifiers are a good way to try and keep more moisture in your air at home and help to improve your symptoms.[1]

 

Waterfall surrounded by greenery

What climate is best for dry eyes?

Hot, dry air can cause moisture from your eyes to evaporate quickly, yet as we’ve discussed already, colder weather can trigger dry eye syndrome too.  The key is to find a climate that’s not too hot, or too cold. Many researchers have seen a dip in Dry Eye throughout the summer months due to the humid air and warmer temperatures.[1] Therefore, a warm environment with plenty of moisture and humidity in the air is the ideal climate for Dry Eye sufferers.[2] So pack your bags and book that plane ticket, because now you have the perfect excuse to go on holiday!

The impact of living in the city on dry eyes

While living and working in the city can be fun and energising, it can also take a toll on your eyes. Let’s look at some of the common causes of Dry Eye Syndrome in the city.

 

London road with busy traffic

Air pollution

Our eyes are exposed to everything in the air surrounding us, whether that’s fresh air from the countryside, smoke from a fire, or pollution from traffic in the city. When exposed to pollution, small particles of dust and smoke can become stuck in your tear film. This means that you’re not able to produce as many tears to keep your eyes lubricated and moist, which often results in dry, irritated eyes. You can help to ease these symptoms by using umbrellas to shield your face against smog and dust, as well as wrap-around sunglasses to stop these things from going in your eyes. [3]

 

Laptop on a desk, statistics on the screen

Screen time 

When working in cities, it’s often the norm to have a standard 9-5 office job, where you spend most of your day behind a computer screen. In addition to this, many who live in the city rely on public transport such as trains, trams or buses to get to and from work every day. During this commute, the majority of people will be on their phones. Increased screen time can result in a condition called Digital Eye Strain, or Computer Eye Syndrome. It’s a common condition that affects many office workers, yet only 1 in 5 people are aware of having it.[3] Trying to reduce your screen time is the best way to reduce the symptoms of Digital Eye Strain and keep your monitor at eye level when working. 

How to alleviate Dry Eye symptoms

While there is no permanent cure for Dry Eye Syndrome, there are some simple steps you can take to help alleviate your symptoms. 

 

Orange sliced open

Eat more vitamins

Monitoring your diet and increasing the amount of specific vitamins you eat can be useful in reducing dry eyes. Here is a list of the best vitamins for the eyes. 

  • Vitamin A
  • Vitamin E
  • Omega 3
  • Vitamin C
  • Flaxseed Oil
  • Zinc
  • Vitamin D
  • Lutein & Zeaxanthin [4]

wraparound sunglasses for dry eye laid on a hat

Wear wrap-around sunglasses

Wearing special wrap-around glasses for dry eyes is a great way to ensure your eyes stay protected from harsh winds, cold air, dust, and debris. These glasses also often feature special lenses which act as a barrier between your eyes and the environment – including allergens like pollen. This makes them a great choice for hay fever sufferers, as the condition can make Dry Eye symptoms worse.[5] 

 

Hands type on a laptop keyboard

Take a break from screen time

As we’ve previously mentioned, screen time is one of the biggest causes of Dry Eye Syndrome. Reducing your screen time where possible will help to relieve your symptoms. Even if you work behind a computer, taking regular breaks from looking at the screen is important. We like to follow the 20/20/20 rule, which is a simple lifestyle change to help remind you to take a break from your screen. The rule is that every 20 minutes, you should look at something which is 20 feet away, for 20 seconds or more. This can be applied when working or watching TV, and numerous studies have found that it’s successful in alleviating Dry Eye symptoms as a result of too much screen time.[6]

For more information on Computer Vision Syndrome, read our blog.

 

Close up of brown eye

Use VisuXL Gel® 

While these lifestyle changes can help to relieve your symptoms of Dry Eye, the best way to feel fully comfortable is to use over-the-counter medications.  VisuXL Gel® provides 12-hour protection with just one drop and works by increasing the moisture in your eyes to form a protective cushion around them.[7]

To find out more about VisuXL® Gel visit our VISUfarma shop.

In most cases, the best way to treat dry eyes, Also known as dry eye syndrome, is to use eye gel or eye drops.

VisuXL Gel® is a preservative-free smart gel lubricant for dry eye syndrome. It provides comfort in a bottle with it’s long-lasting lubrication properties giving 12-hour dosing with just one drop and is suitable for both day and night use.

VisuXL® is a preservative-free eye drop lubricant for dry eye syndrome. Due to its unique ingredients, VisuXL® will help you recover from eye surgery, an injury or persistent damaging dry eye.

VisuEvo® is a preservative-free eye drop that prevents excessive evaporation of the tear film. Its unique formula contains omega-3 essential fatty acids, Vitamins A and D and ultra-filtered phospholipids that facilitate tear film presentation and control evaporation.

All three products are contact lens-friendly and can be used for 180 days after opening.

Shop now

References

  1. Complete Eye Care of Medina, ‘Which season has the greatest impact on dry eyes’. Accessed December 2022.
  2. Seltman, Whitney, ‘Climate, Environment and Dry Eye’ WebMD, 21/06/21. Accessed December 2022.
  3. London Vision Clinic, ‘The effect on your eyes working in the city (London)’ 6/11/15. Accessed December 2022.
  4. Capogna, Laurie, Eye Wellness, ‘The Best Supplements for Dry Eye’ 13/07/21. Accessed December 2022.
  5. Specsavers, ‘Dry Eyes and Glasses Explained’. Accessed December 2022.
  6. Reddy, S. C., Low, C., Lim, Y., Low, L., Mardina, F. and Nursaleha, M. (2013) “Computer vision syndrome: a study of knowledge and practices in university students”, Nepalese Journal of Ophthalmology. Accessed December 2022.
  7. VisuXL Gel Instructions for Use (IFU). Accessed December 2022.
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Everything You Need To Know About Dry Eye

Are you suffering from Dry Eye and unsure about why your symptoms occur and what to do about it?
In this blog, we tell you everything you need to know about Dry Eye syndrome, with frequently asked questions that may help you manage your dry eye symptoms.

 

What is the main cause of Dry Eye?

Dry Eye is caused by your eyes not producing enough tears, or your tears drying up too quickly. A number of factors can contribute to this, including looking at electronic screens for too long, being in an air-conditioned, dry or windy environment and drinking alcohol or smoking. Taking certain medications can dry your eyes out too, however, if you stop taking the medication in question your Dry Eye symptoms can go away.[1] Medication should never be stopped without consulting your GP or doctor first, so always check with them before you stop taking anything.

 

How do dry eyes feel?

Dry eyes can feel very uncomfortable, and in more extreme cases, it can be painful. If you have dry eyes they may feel:

  • Gritty
  • Itchy 
  • Sore
  • Watery
  • Sensitive to light
  • Blurry

 Eye drops can help ease this irritation. We advise speaking to a medical professional about what treatment options are right for you.[1]

 

How do dry eyes affect vision?

If you have a mild case of Dry Eye, it is unlikely that it will cause any permanent damage to your eyesight, especially if you receive treatment to ease your symptoms. If you suffer from a more severe case of Dry Eye, the cornea of your eye can become damaged. This can cause you to experience eyesight problems such as blurry or cloudy vision, and in some cases can lead to blindness.[2]

dry eyes and vision

 

What can dry eyes be a symptom of?
Dry eyes can be a symptom of a number of conditions that you may suffer from. Sjogren’s Syndrome affects fluids in the body, including tears, so can therefore cause Dry Eye as a result. Blepharitis is a temporary but uncomfortable condition that can cause gritty and dry feeling eyes.[1] Dry Eye can also be a symptom of menopause. During menopause the decrease in the androgen hormone effects certain glands in the eyes, which produce oils that are essential for tear production. As a result, this can lead to increased tear evaporation and dry eyes.[3]

 

Does Dry Eye go away?
Sometimes Dry Eye symptoms can go away on their own, especially if it’s down to an environmental factor. These factors may be things like prolonged screen use, dry conditions and dietary issues. Often changing these lifestyle factors can reduce or get rid of your symptoms.

If your Dry Eye is a chronic condition, the symptoms can be managed and lessened, but will not completely go away. Chronic Dry Eye means your eyes can’t produce enough tears to keep your eyes moist, so is therefore down to a medical factor rather than a lifestyle factor.[4]

 

Can lack of sleep cause Dry Eye?
Sleep is important for eyes, as studies have shown that for your eyes to properly refresh you need at least five hours of sleep. A lack of sleep can therefore cause Dry Eye, as your eyes have not had enough time to refresh and they are not effectively lubricated. This can lead to pain, light sensitivity, itching, redness or blurry vision.[5]

dry eye and sleep

 

Does drinking water help dry eyes?
Drinking more water helps you stay hydrated, which can in turn help your eyes stay hydrated and moist. You should aim to drink eight to ten glasses of water a day to maintain proper hydration levels and help ease your dry eyes.[6]

 

How can I treat Dry Eye at home?
There are a few ways you can ease your Dry Eye symptoms at home. Ensure you clean your eyes daily, to get rid of any dust or dirt that may be trapped in your eyes. You can do this by soaking a clean flannel in warm water, and placing it over your eyes for five to ten minutes. Then massage your eyelids for around thirty seconds to release any dirt, before wiping it away.[7]

Limit your use of electronic devices, or make sure that you have regular breaks if you need to use screens for work purposes. Purchase a humidifier to add more moisture into the air. If you wear contacts, wear glasses when you can to rest your eyes.[1]

 

Is it ok to use eye drops every day?
You should always listen to your doctor’s advice when it comes to how regularly you use your eye drops, as every case is different. Most eye drops are usually recommended to be taken twice a day, depending on the severity of your symptoms and the kind of eye drops you are using. If you feel that you need more eye drops per day, you should consult with a healthcare professional.[8]

dry eye and eye drops

 

What are the best drops for dry eyes?

Artificial tears are usually the option most commonly used for dry eyes. They keep your eyes moist and help to heal the surface of your eye, which helps to reduce irritation. Some do contain preservatives which can irritate your eyes more if they are particularly sensitive, so make sure to look out for preservative-free options like the VisuXL® drops. 

You can also use allergy drops if your symptoms are caused or worsened by common allergens. They contain antihistamines to stop allergy symptoms like runny nose and itchy, uncomfortable eyes.[9]

In most cases, the best way to treat dry eyes, Also known as dry eye syndrome, is to use eye gel or eye drops.

VisuXL Gel® is a preservative-free smart gel lubricant for dry eye syndrome. It provides comfort in a bottle with it’s long-lasting lubrication properties giving 12-hour dosing with just one drop and is suitable for both day and night use.

VisuXL® is a preservative-free eye drop lubricant for dry eye syndrome. Due to its unique ingredients, VisuXL® will help you recover from eye surgery, an injury or persistent damaging dry eye.

VisuEvo® is a preservative-free eye drop that prevents excessive evaporation of the tear film. Its unique formula contains omega-3 essential fatty acids, Vitamins A and D and ultra-filtered phospholipids that facilitate tear film presentation and control evaporation.

All three products are contact lens-friendly and can be used for 180 days after opening.

Shop now

We hope this article has answered all your Dry Eye questions. However, if not please reach out to us on our socials, join our community on Facebook and Instagram and discover further advice to help your eyes.

 

References

  1. NHS England, ‘Dry Eyes’. Last accessed September 2022
  2. Fletcher, Jenna. ‘You ask, we answer: Can dry eye cause blindness?’, Medical News Today, 04/05/22. Last Accessed September 2022
  3. The Dry Eye Center Of NY & NJ, ‘What’s the Link Between Dry Eye and Menopause?’, 08/04/21, Last Accessed September 2022
  4. Cafasso, Jacquelyn. ‘Your FAQs, Answered: Can Dry Eyes Be Cured?’, Heathline, 03/09/21, Lasted Accessed September 2022
  5. Eye Health North West, ‘How Lack Of Sleep Affects Your Vision’, 20/11/12, Last Accessed September 2022
  6. Complete Eye Care, ‘How Does Hydration Affect My Eyes?’, Last Accessed September 2022
  7. NHS England, ‘Blepharitis’. Last accessed September 2022
  8. Barnet Dulaney Perkins Eye Center,’Are You Overusing Eye Drops?’, 22/05/19, Last Accessed September 2022
  9. WebMD, ‘Do You Use the Right Eye Drops for Your Dry Eyes?’, 21/06/21, Last Accessed September 2022

 

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6 Conditions That Cause Dry Eye

While anyone can develop Dry Eye Syndrome, there are certain conditions that put you more at risk, whether it’s long-term or temporarily. 

In this article, we list some of the most common conditions that cause Dry Eye symptoms, as well as providing tips to relieve your symptoms.

 

Sjogren’s Syndrome

Sjogren’s Syndrome affects fluids in the body like tears and spit. The condition can cause dryness all over the body, including your eyes. There is no cure for the syndrome and the symptoms can be quite uncomfortable. There are a few things you can do to ease your symptoms including protecting your eyes from the environment with sunglasses, limiting reading and screen time and not smoking or drinking alcohol. Medication and eye drops can help with maintaining the moisture in your eyes if you have Sjogren’s Syndrome.[1]

 

Rheumatoid Arthritis

Rheumatoid Arthritis is an autoimmune disease where your immune system attacks cells that line the joints by mistake, which makes them more painful and stiff. In some people, this condition can cause inflammation in other areas of the body, including the eyes.[2] When there is inflammation in the eyes, it can affect the tear ducts which causes them to produce less tears. In addition, it can also affect the production of all 3 layers of the tear film will are essential for optimal comfort and moisture, which can also make your eyes feel more dry.[3] Although there is no cure, if you’re suffering with Rheumatoid Arthritis you can take medications to help your symptoms and slow the progression of the condition. This in turn should help reduce your chances of inflammation in your eyes and therefore prevent Dry Eye.[4]

 

Nocturnal Lagophthalmos (Sleeping With Eyes Slightly Open)

Did you know that 20% of people, including babies, sleep with their eyes slightly open? There are a few reasons why this may happen, but some people are simply just born with issues that prevent them from closing their eyes completely. It can also occur if you suffer from a condition that affects the nerves in your face, which can be caused by a stroke, serious injury or Bell’s Palsy.[5]

 

If your eyes can’t close properly they will dry out, as blinking will be less effective. This is especially the case if you’re sleeping with open eyes, as dust and dirt can enter the eye easier whilst you sleep. Nocturnal Lagophthalmos doesn’t prevent you from sleeping, however as it causes dry eyes and irritation, it can make you more restless.[5]

 

There are treatments to help the problem, as your doctor can give you eye drops or ointments to prevent your eyes from becoming dry. There’s even an option for your doctor to give you a small weight or medical tape to keep your eyes fully closed while you sleep. You should not ignore the condition as it can cause more complications like vision loss, if you don’t seek treatment.[5]

 

Allergies 

Allergies like Hay Fever can trigger symptoms of Dry Eye. Doing outdoor activities when pollen is high in the atmosphere can worsen your symptoms and set off your allergies. These symptoms include eye itchiness and dry eyes. To avoid your reaction to allergens, avoid going outside when you feel your allergies flare up, and prevent yourself from doing activities such as gardening when you feel your eyes become itchy or dry. You can also take allergy medication to help relieve your eye irritation.[6]

hay fever and dry eye

 

Cataracts Surgery 

It’s common to have dry eyes after having cataract surgery, in fact 42% of participants in a 2019 surgery who had cataract surgery said they developed Dry Eye symptoms.[7]

 

The surgery can cause Dry Eye symptoms as it can make the lipid layer of the eye, that stabilises the tear film, thinner. Therefore, the tear film can become unstable and result in creating drier eyes. Dry eyes after cataract surgery may also be due to corneal nerve damage, light exposure, inflammation and medicated eye drops as a result of the surgery itself.[7]

 

Post-surgery Dry Eye symptoms are usually temporary but can be very uncomfortable. The symptoms of Dry Eye after cataracts can be:

  • Eye pain
  • Burning sensation in the eye
  • Higher sensitivity to wind and light
  • Feeling like you have something stuck in your eye
  • Blurry vision

[7]

 

Blepharitis

Blepharitis is not a serious condition, however it can cause uncomfortable symptoms that include dry eyes. Blepharitis symptoms include swollen and itchy eyes, gritty feeling in the eyes and eyelids sticking together.[8]

 

You can treat Blepharitis by cleaning your eyelids twice a day, then once your symptoms improve, you drop this down to once a day. To stop further irritation, use a soft flannel or cotton wool when cleaning your eyes. You should avoid wearing contact lenses and makeup while you have Blepharitis to prevent making your symptoms worse.[8]

 

We hope this article has helped you to recognise the conditions that may be causing your Dry Eye, and how you can help ease your symptoms.

 

In most cases, the best way to treat dry eyes, Also known as dry eye syndrome, is to use eye gel or eye drops.

VisuXL Gel® is a preservative-free smart gel lubricant for dry eye syndrome. It provides comfort in a bottle with it’s long-lasting lubrication properties giving 12-hour dosing with just one drop and is suitable for both day and night use.

VisuXL® is a preservative-free eye drop lubricant for dry eye syndrome. Due to its unique ingredients, VisuXL® will help you recover from eye surgery, an injury or persistent damaging dry eye.

VisuEvo® is a preservative-free eye drop that prevents excessive evaporation of the tear film. Its unique formula contains omega-3 essential fatty acids, Vitamins A and D and ultra-filtered phospholipids that facilitate tear film presentation and control evaporation.

All three products are contact lens-friendly and can be used for 180 days after opening.

Shop now

 

References

  1. NHS England, ‘Sjögren’s syndrome’, Accessed July 2022
  2. NHS England, ‘Rheumatoid arthritis’, Accessed July 2022
  3. Seltman, Whitney. ‘Dry Eye and Inflammation’, WebMD, 09/05/22, Accessed July 2022
  4. NHS England, Rheumatoid arthritis, Accessed July 2022
  5. Benisek, Alexandra. ‘Can You Sleep With Your Eyes Open?’, WebMD, 14/07/20, . Accessed July 2022
  6. Ellis, Mary-Ellen. ‘Managing Dry Eyes in Every Season’, Healthline, 20/08/18, Accessed July 2022
  7. Nunez, Kirsten. ‘Is It Normal to Have Dry Eyes After Cataract Surgery?’, Healthline, 20/10/21, Accessed July 2022
  8. NHS England, ‘Blepharitis’, Accessed July 2022

 

Back to news

5 Dry Eye Myths You Need To Know About

While anyone can develop Dry Eye Syndrome, there are certain conditions that put you more at risk, whether it’s long-term or temporarily. 

In this article, we list some of the most common conditions that cause Dry Eye symptoms, as well as providing tips to relieve your symptoms.

 

Sjogren’s Syndrome

Sjogren’s Syndrome affects fluids in the body like tears and spit. The condition can cause dryness all over the body, including your eyes. There is no cure for the syndrome and the symptoms can be quite uncomfortable. There are a few things you can do to ease your symptoms including protecting your eyes from the environment with sunglasses, limiting reading and screen time and not smoking or drinking alcohol. Medication and eye drops can help with maintaining the moisture in your eyes if you have Sjogren’s Syndrome.[1]

 

Rheumatoid Arthritis

Rheumatoid Arthritis is an autoimmune disease where your immune system attacks cells that line the joints by mistake, which makes them more painful and stiff. In some people, this condition can cause inflammation in other areas of the body, including the eyes.[2] When there is inflammation in the eyes, it can affect the tear ducts which causes them to produce less tears. In addition, it can also affect the production of all 3 layers of the tear film will are essential for optimal comfort and moisture, which can also make your eyes feel more dry.[3] Although there is no cure, if you’re suffering with Rheumatoid Arthritis you can take medications to help your symptoms and slow the progression of the condition. This in turn should help reduce your chances of inflammation in your eyes and therefore prevent Dry Eye.[4]

 

Nocturnal Lagophthalmos (Sleeping With Eyes Slightly Open)

Did you know that 20% of people, including babies, sleep with their eyes slightly open? There are a few reasons why this may happen, but some people are simply just born with issues that prevent them from closing their eyes completely. It can also occur if you suffer from a condition that affects the nerves in your face, which can be caused by a stroke, serious injury or Bell’s Palsy.[5]

 

If your eyes can’t close properly they will dry out, as blinking will be less effective. This is especially the case if you’re sleeping with open eyes, as dust and dirt can enter the eye easier whilst you sleep. Nocturnal Lagophthalmos doesn’t prevent you from sleeping, however as it causes dry eyes and irritation, it can make you more restless.[5]

 

There are treatments to help the problem, as your doctor can give you eye drops or ointments to prevent your eyes from becoming dry. There’s even an option for your doctor to give you a small weight or medical tape to keep your eyes fully closed while you sleep. You should not ignore the condition as it can cause more complications like vision loss, if you don’t seek treatment.[5]

 

Allergies 

Allergies like Hay Fever can trigger symptoms of Dry Eye. Doing outdoor activities when pollen is high in the atmosphere can worsen your symptoms and set off your allergies. These symptoms include eye itchiness and dry eyes. To avoid your reaction to allergens, avoid going outside when you feel your allergies flare up, and prevent yourself from doing activities such as gardening when you feel your eyes become itchy or dry. You can also take allergy medication to help relieve your eye irritation.[6]

hay fever and dry eye

 

Cataracts Surgery 

It’s common to have dry eyes after having cataract surgery, in fact 42% of participants in a 2019 surgery who had cataract surgery said they developed Dry Eye symptoms.[7]

 

The surgery can cause Dry Eye symptoms as it can make the lipid layer of the eye, that stabilises the tear film, thinner. Therefore, the tear film can become unstable and result in creating drier eyes. Dry eyes after cataract surgery may also be due to corneal nerve damage, light exposure, inflammation and medicated eye drops as a result of the surgery itself.[7]

 

Post-surgery Dry Eye symptoms are usually temporary but can be very uncomfortable. The symptoms of Dry Eye after cataracts can be:

  • Eye pain
  • Burning sensation in the eye
  • Higher sensitivity to wind and light
  • Feeling like you have something stuck in your eye
  • Blurry vision

[7]

 

Blepharitis

Blepharitis is not a serious condition, however it can cause uncomfortable symptoms that include dry eyes. Blepharitis symptoms include swollen and itchy eyes, gritty feeling in the eyes and eyelids sticking together.[8]

 

You can treat Blepharitis by cleaning your eyelids twice a day, then once your symptoms improve, you drop this down to once a day. To stop further irritation, use a soft flannel or cotton wool when cleaning your eyes. You should avoid wearing contact lenses and makeup while you have Blepharitis to prevent making your symptoms worse.[8]

 

We hope this article has helped you to recognise the conditions that may be causing your Dry Eye, and how you can help ease your symptoms.

 

In most cases, the best way to treat dry eyes, Also known as dry eye syndrome, is to use eye gel or eye drops.

VisuXL Gel® is a preservative-free smart gel lubricant for dry eye syndrome. It provides comfort in a bottle with it’s long-lasting lubrication properties giving 12-hour dosing with just one drop and is suitable for both day and night use.

VisuXL® is a preservative-free eye drop lubricant for dry eye syndrome. Due to its unique ingredients, VisuXL® will help you recover from eye surgery, an injury or persistent damaging dry eye.

VisuEvo® is a preservative-free eye drop that prevents excessive evaporation of the tear film. Its unique formula contains omega-3 essential fatty acids, Vitamins A and D and ultra-filtered phospholipids that facilitate tear film presentation and control evaporation.

All three products are contact lens-friendly and can be used for 180 days after opening.

Shop now

 

References

  1. NHS England, ‘Sjögren’s syndrome’, Accessed July 2022
  2. NHS England, ‘Rheumatoid arthritis’, Accessed July 2022
  3. Seltman, Whitney. ‘Dry Eye and Inflammation’, WebMD, 09/05/22, Accessed July 2022
  4. NHS England, Rheumatoid arthritis, Accessed July 2022
  5. Benisek, Alexandra. ‘Can You Sleep With Your Eyes Open?’, WebMD, 14/07/20, . Accessed July 2022
  6. Ellis, Mary-Ellen. ‘Managing Dry Eyes in Every Season’, Healthline, 20/08/18, Accessed July 2022
  7. Nunez, Kirsten. ‘Is It Normal to Have Dry Eyes After Cataract Surgery?’, Healthline, 20/10/21, Accessed July 2022
  8. NHS England, ‘Blepharitis’, Accessed July 2022

 

Back to news

How to Cope with Dry Eye in Summer

Does your Dry Eye feel worse in summer? Don’t worry, you’re not alone. Many people are aware of the risk of dry eyes in winter, due to the harsh, cold weather conditions. Whilst Dry Eye Syndrome is usually worse for patients in winter and spring, it can also be triggered by warm, dry weather in the summer months. [1]

In this article, our Dry Eye expert covers the causes of that itchy feeling in the summer months and lists seven tips to avoid dry, sore, itchy eyes.

Can Dry Eye be worse in the summer?

Dry eyes can often feel worse in summer, as warm weather can cause the tear film to evaporate from your eyes. [2] While the air is more humid which can provide relief to some of the symptoms and you’re less likely to spend days staring at screens, summertime activities like swimming can actually aggravate the condition.

Here are some of the causes of dry eyes in summer:

 

Blue Sky

 

Dry air

Dry air means dry eyes! In summer, researchers actually see a dip in Dry Eye cases in America. This is due to increased humidity, which adds moisture into the air. [3] However, this isn’t the case in many other places.

 

Sunset in a Field

 

The sun

The summer sun can feel lovely, but can also be very harmful. UV rays can cause the moisture in your eyes to evaporate, making your eyes very dry. [2]

 

Air Conditioning with Remote

 

Air conditioning

Although not regularly seen across the UK, an air-conditioned room is common part of any hot holiday. Air conditioning reduces the amount of humidity and moisture in the air, which can dry out your eyes. The cold temperatures can also reduce the ability of meibomian glands to secrete oils that prevent tears from evaporating. [2]

 

Woman with dry eye or hayfever blows her nose in a field

 

Allergies

Hay fever season runs between late March and September, which crosses over the summer months. [4] Many people who suffer from Dry Eye also suffer from allergies, so hay fever season can be a tough time. [1]

Find out more about Dry Eye and hay fever here: How Does Hayfever Season Affect Dry Eye Sufferers?

 

Water Bottle sits in the foreground as a woman ties her trainers in the background

 

Dehydration

Do you drink enough liquids in summer? It can be easy to forget to drink enough in summer, which can lead to dehydration. When we’re dehydrated, our body prioritises using water for important factors like brain function. This means that our dry eyes can get left behind, unable to make enough healthy tears. [2]

 

Hand with Barbeque Tongs Over Barbeque

BBQs

Summer isn’t complete without a barbeque gathering! However, if you have dry eyes, you should avoid being the one on the grill. If you get smoke in your eyes, it can make them red, and cause itching and burning sensations. [5]

 

Hat and Legs of Woman in Pool

Swimming pools

The best way to cool down after a hot summer day is in a cold pool! Whether you’re on holiday or in the garden, relaxing in the cold water is much-needed. But, the chlorine in pools can actually wash away your tear film, increasing Dry Eye symptoms. [6]

 

Friends cheers with drinks in the summer

 

Alcohol

Did you know that more people drink alcohol in summer? According to a study published in the Journals of Studies on Alcohol, summer and Christmas are the most popular times to drink alcohol. [7] With many people going on all-inclusive holidays and a higher number of people socialising, this isn’t surprising. Alcohol should be approached with caution, though, as it makes it harder for the body to produce enough tears to hydrate your eyes. [8]

You can find out more about the effect of alcohol on dry eyes in our blog: Is Drinking Alcohol Bad For Your Eyes?

 

How can you get rid of Dry Eye Syndrome in the summer?

Are you wondering how to keep your eyes cool in summer? Follow these tips to help!

 

Man with dry eye wears sunglasses and drinks water outside

 

1. Stay hydrated

Eyes become dry when they are dehydrated, just like the rest of the body. In summer, when the weather is warmer, we need to drink more liquids – especially when we exercise. Researchers state that this is because our body tries to cool itself down by sweating, so water is lost. [9]

If you’re suffering from dry, itchy eyes, experts recommend drinking between 8 and 10 glasses of water a day to prevent flare-ups during warmer weather. [10]

 

A couple wears wrap around sunglasses to fight dry eye and sport bike gear

 

2. Wear wraparound glasses to combat Dry Eye

Wearing sunglasses when out and about helps to protect your eyes from the sun, wind, and dirt. Wraparound sunglasses for dry eyes are ideal to protect them from the elements in summer. Make sure the sunglasses have at least 98% UV protection to keep your eyes from feeling sore and itchy when you’re outside. [11]

 

Woman with Eye Mask in Bed

 

3. Use a heated compress at night

If you are suffering from Evaporative Dry Eye, or Meibomian Gland Dysfunction, a heated compress, such as MeiboPatch®, will be ideal for unblocking your meibomian glands and help minimise dry eyes at night. [12]

Browse our MeiboPatch® solution here: MeiboPatch®

 

Woman in Pool with Goggles

 

4. Always wear goggles when swimming

Wherever you are this summer, your well-deserved break will hopefully include a relaxing swim in the pool or the sea.
If you submerge your head underwater whilst swimming, it’s important to always wear goggles. The chlorine in swimming pools and the salt in seawater can irritate the eyes, causing existing Dry Eye symptoms to worsen. [13]

 

A pile of fruit that can help provide the vitamins that soothe dry eye

 

5. Take vitamins

There are certain vitamins and minerals that boost eye health, which can help if you suffer from Dry Eye Syndrome.
Adding vitamins which boost eye health into your diet, combined with a regular treatment plan, can reduce symptoms and improve your quality of life. With many fresh fruit and vegetables in season, summer is the perfect time to try and eat more foods which are rich in Vitamin C, E and D. [14]

Read more about vitamins for dry eyes here: 6 Vitamins for Dry Eyes

 

A humidifier works in a white room with plants in the background

 

6. Put a humidifier in your home to ease Dry Eye

If you suffer from itchy, red, sore or watery eyes, getting a humidifier is a great idea to ease your symptoms. A humidifier helps combat the warm, dry heat of summer months to lubricate your eyes.

If you struggle with night-time dry eyes in the summer, putting the humidifier in your bedroom can help relieve symptoms. [15]

For more lifestyle changes you can make, visit this blog: 6 Lifestyle Tips to Help Dry Eye

 

Woman Using Eye Drops to fight dry eye

 

7. Use eye drops for dry eye

If you’re planning on taking a trip, don’t leave without your eye drops, as an uncomfortable flare-up could ruin your holiday.

Use long lasting eye drops for dry eyes, like VisuXL® eye drops can help provide relief for irritating symptoms such as dry, itchy, red, sore or watery eyes. VisuXL® eye drops in particular can help to provide more symptomatic relief than a standard eye drop can provide.

Other eye drops on the market are linear Hyaluronic Acid drops, whereas VisuXL® is a patented formula. In VisuXL® eye drops, Hyaluronic Acid is crossed-linked so that it doesn’t wash away easily when blinking. Instead, it remains on the eye for longer. It also forms a net on the surface of the eye, to help the second key ingredient, CoQ10, to repair damaged cells. [16]

Hopefully, these top tips will help you to get outside and enjoy the sunshine this summer, without having to worry about dry eyes.

Get prepared for Dry Eye and summer with our VisuXL® Eye Drops, which you can browse here: VisuXL® Eye Drops

 

In most cases, the best way to treat dry eyes, Also known as dry eye syndrome, is to use eye gel or eye drops.

VisuXL Gel® is a preservative-free smart gel lubricant for dry eye syndrome. It provides comfort in a bottle with it’s long-lasting lubrication properties giving 12-hour dosing with just one drop and is suitable for both day and night use.

VisuXL® is a preservative-free eye drop lubricant for dry eye syndrome. Due to its unique ingredients, VisuXL® will help you recover from eye surgery, an injury or persistent damaging dry eye.

VisuEvo® is a preservative-free eye drop that prevents excessive evaporation of the tear film. Its unique formula contains omega-3 essential fatty acids, Vitamins A and D and ultra-filtered phospholipids that facilitate tear film presentation and control evaporation.

All three products are contact lens-friendly and can be used for 180 days after opening.

Shop now

 

References

  1. Kumar, N., Feuer, W., Lanza, N. L., & Galor, ‘A, Seasonal Variation in Dry Eye’, Ophthalmology, 122(8), pp. 1727-1729, 01/08/16. Accessed May 2022.
  2. East Main Vision Clinic, ‘Why is Dry Eye Worse in Summer?’, 22/07/20. Accessed February 2023.
  3. Complete Eye Care of Medina. ‘Which Season Has The Greatest Impact On Dry Eyes?’. Accessed December 2022.
  4. NHS England. ‘Hay fever’, 04/02/21. Accessed December 2022.
  5. Dr. Aizman Empire Retina Consultants. ‘The Effects That Smoke Can Have On Your Eyes’. Accessed February 2023.
  6. Nicole Holliman. ‘Managing Dry Eyes During Summer Months’, WebMd, 11/05/22. Accessed February 2023.
  7. D G Uitenbroek. ‘Seasonal variation in alcohol use’, National Library of Medicine, 1996 Jan;57(1):47-52. Accessed February 2023.
  8. You, Young-Sheng, Qu, Nai-Bin, Yu, Xiao-Ning, ‘Alcohol consumption and dry eye syndrome: a Meta-analysis’, International Journal of Ophthalmology, 2016; 9(10): 1487–1492. Accessed December 2021.
  9. Krempa, F. ‘Experts Say You Should Drink This Much More Water Per Day When It’s Hot Outside’, 05/07/21. Accessed February 2023.
  10. Complete Eye Care, ‘How Does Hydration Affect My Eyes’. Accessed Sep 2021.
  11. Theriot, P, ‘The Best Sunglasses for Dry Eye Sufferers’. Accessed May 2022.
  12. MeiboPatch® Instructions for Use (IFU). Accessed May 2022.
  13. Specsavers Opticas, ‘Expat vision care: Can sea and sun exposure cause dry eyes?’, Specsavers Opticas. Accessed May 2022.
  14. Meixner, M, ‘The 9 Most Important Vitamins for Eye Health’, Healthline, 25/07/18. Accessed January 2022.
  15. Higuera, V, ‘Creating a Healthy Morning and Night-time Routine for Chronic Dry Eyes’, Healthline. Accessed May 2022.
  16. VisuXL® Instructions for Use (IFU). Accessed May 2022.
Back to news

How Does Hayfever Season Affect Dry Eye Sufferers?

For many of us, the joy of spring also equals hayfever season, which can mean watery, itchy eyes.

For Dry Eye sufferers, this season can be doubly difficult, as pollen allergies combined with Dry Eye symptoms can cause extra discomfort.[1]

This blog explains what Dry Eye is, how allergies can affect it, and what treatment you can seek if you are suffering from chronic itchy, irritated eyes in hayfever season.

Index: 


Woman with dry eyes holds her hand to her eye

What is Dry Eye Disease? 

Dry Eye Disease is a chronic condition, where patients experience itchy, gritty, irritated or watery eyes.[2] One in four people in the UK suffer from Dry Eye, and whilst it is usually not very serious, the symptoms can be frustrating and impact people’s quality of life.[3]

Woman sneezing whilst standing around flowers

Why can Dry Eye symptoms sometimes feel worse in spring? 

Many people who suffer from Dry Eye also suffer from allergies, so there is much crossover between the two. Existing symptoms such as redness, soreness, burning or stinging, itchiness, and blurry vision are more likely to get worse in the spring when pollen allergies are most prevalent.[4]

Field with butterflies

When is hayfever season?

According to a study by Kleenex UK and Allergy UK, 49% of the UK population suffer from hay fever.[5] This means that hayfever season impacts a huge amount of people.

Hayfever season is usually between late March and September, when the pollen count is high. It is even worse when it’s warm, humid and windy.[6]

You can be aware of the pollen count by looking on websites like BBC Weather. These can help you to plan ahead to be more cautious when hayfever season comes.

Blurry image of people walking

Can hayfever cause blurry vision?

Yes! In most cases of hay fever, your eyes will be very watery. This might result in blurry vision, but this should soon pass.[7] There are also lots more symptoms of hay fever, which you can find below.

Woman holds her eyes in irritation

Do I have hay fever eyes or Dry Eye?

If you’re experiencing eye discomfort, its hard to tell whether you have Dry Eye Syndrome or hay fever eyes. The main difference between hay fever eyes and Dry Eyes is that itching is more intense with hay fever. There are also more physical factors that come with hay fever eyes, like sneezing and having a runny nose. [8]

Dry Eye symptoms are:

  • Itchy eyes
  • Burning eyes
  • Achey eyes
  • Eyes that feel heavy
  • Eyes that feel sore
  • Eyes that feel gritty or sandy
  • Red eyes
  • Blurry eyes
  • Fatigue
  • Eyes that are sensitive to light
  • Eyes that are more watery than normal

Hay fever eyes and hay fever symptoms include:

  • Intensely itchy eyes
  • Red eyes
  • Watery eyes
  • Sneezing
  • Runny nose
  • Blocked nose
  • Itchy throat, mouth and ears
  • Cough
  • Loss of sense of smell
  • Facial pain
  • Ache in head and ears
  • Tiredness and fatigue [9]

If you’re still struggling to find out the cause of your dry eye, visit our blog: 6 Causes of Dry Eye

Family of four run walk happily through field

What can I do to ease Dry Eye and hay fever eye symptoms? 

There are many ways that you can ease your symptoms. Here are some of them:


Woman with sunglasses on smiling in a field

  • Avoid triggers

It may sound simple, but if you know that you suffer from pollen, dust or pet allergies, do your best to avoid irritants. Pollen allergies are hard to avoid when going outside in the spring, but checking the pollen count on apps such as Apple Weather or BBC Weather can be a good idea.

Wearing wrap-around sunglasses outside during hayfever season also helps to mitigate Dry Eye symptoms.[10]

Hands hold hayfever tablets

  • Take antihistamine eye drops

Antihistamines can be a good way to minimise allergy symptoms. However, some oral antihistamines can actually dry the eyes out even further, making Dry Eye symptoms worse.[11]

Therefore, many experts recommend topical allergy treatments, such as antihistamine gels or eye drops, as they can reduce irritation more effectively.

If your allergy symptoms persist and become severe, it’s a good idea to consult your GP.

Man putting eye drops into his eye

  • Use eye drops

Eye drops can soothe eyes that are itchy and irritated from allergies like hayfever, and Dry Eye Disease. Artificial tears are one type of eye drop that is readily available over the counter and can help maintain moisture on the outer surface of your eyes.[12]

Woman wears facemask in bed

  • Use a compress

To soothe your eyes, use an eye compress such as MeiboPatch® twice a day. Apply it to your upper face, over your eyes, for a break from the elements.[13]

You can buy MeiboPatch® here: MeiboPatch®

Flowers on a windowsill

  • Don’t keep fresh flowers

If you have hay fever, you should avoid keeping fresh flowers in your house.[6] Even if they are cut, they can still release pollen into the air and irritate your eyes. [14] If you would still like to have a bunch of flowers in your home, there are many fake plant options out there to help you decorate.

Lips with vaseline

  • Use Vaseline

The NHS recommends this treatment! If you put Vaseline around your nostrils, it can trap pollen before you can inhale it. Just make sure that you take it off at the end of the day, before you go to bed.[6]

Man in shower

  • Shower 

Pollen can cling to your clothes and skin, so you should always shower and wash your clothes immediately after being outside. This can get rid of these allergens, to prevent a hay fever flare-up at night.[15] 

Grass

  • Don’t walk on grass

If you have hay fever, you should avoid grass at all costs! Although keeping lawns short can lower the chances of grass releasing pollen, this isn’t a responsibility you should take on yourself.[16] To avoid any allergy triggers, you should let someone else mow your grass for you and avoid going outside whilst this is underway. You should also avoid walking on grass, to prevent getting pollen stuck to your shoes and bringing it into your house.[6]

Car air vents

  • Change your pollen filters

A pollen filter goes in your air vents and cleans the air that comes into your car, rejecting dirt, dust and exhaust fumes, as well as pollen. Many modern cars come with filters built-in, but most vehicle manufacturers recommend that you get a mechanic to change them every two years – or more if you live in a very pollen-heavy area. It is a good idea to change your pollen filter in winter so that you’re ready for hayfever season ahead of time.[17]

Person vacuuming white carpet near dog

  • Clean your house

As well as keeping yourself clean, you should also make sure that your house is clear of any allergens that could irritate your hay fever eyes. The NHS recommends that you vacuum your house regularly and dust around with a damp cloth.[6] This can remove dust and allergens from your carpets and surfaces.[18] Lloyds Pharmacy recommends that you should try to use a vacuum that has a HEPA (high-efficiency particulate absorbing) filter, which can clear the air thoroughly.[19]

Hands pulling a window closed

  • Keep the outside, outside

It can be tempting to open your windows as spring creeps in, but this can invite allergens into your home. Therefore, it’s best to keep your windows and doors shut at this time of year.[6]

Pile of cigarettes

  • Avoid smoke

Cigarette smoke is a huge irritant of Dry Eye Disease, as the harmful chemicals break down the layer of tears in our eyes. This causes eyes to be dry and irritated.[20] As hay fever can dry out eyes too, smoke can make them even drier.

If you do smoke, it is a good idea to stop smoking. Non-smokers should also avoid smoking areas and other places where second-hand smoke is prominent. 

For more information on smoking and Dry Eye, visit our blog: Smoking and Dry Eye

Clothes hanging on a washing line

  • Don’t dry your clothes outside

If you suffer from extreme hay fever and Dry Eyes, it is best to dry your clothes inside, no matter the weather. This is because pollen can stick to clothing, sheets and more.[21]

If you have to put your washing outside, Professor Adam Fox, Paediatric Allergist working at a leading London teaching hospital and the President of British Society for Allergy & Clinical Immunology, suggests that you should hang your washing out at times when the pollen count is low. He states that pollen rises early in the morning, and falls back down at dusk, so it is best to put washing outside in the middle of the day.

Woman using eye drops outside

What are the best eye drops for hayfever?

Eye drops are a great way to help soothe and treat hay fever eyes. We have a range of eye drop recommendations just for you.

eye drops for dry eyeVisuXL® Eyedrops

Use up to two eye drops a day for long-lasting relief from Dry Eye flare-ups caused by hay fever.[22]

You can buy these eye drops here: VisuXL® Eye Drops

eye gel for dry eyeVisuXL® Gel

Gel eye drops, like VisuXL® Gel, can provide a thicker moisture barrier, helping to lubricate your eyes for up to 12 hours. They can be used day and night, to help with irritation.[23][24][25]
You can buy this eye gel here: VisuXL® Gel

For more information on Dry Eye and hay fever, follow us on social media.

In most cases, the best way to treat dry eyes, Also known as dry eye syndrome, is to use eye gel or eye drops.

VisuXL Gel® is a preservative-free smart gel lubricant for dry eye syndrome. It provides comfort in a bottle with it’s long-lasting lubrication properties giving 12-hour dosing with just one drop and is suitable for both day and night use.

VisuXL® is a preservative-free eye drop lubricant for dry eye syndrome. Due to its unique ingredients, VisuXL® will help you recover from eye surgery, an injury or persistent damaging dry eye.

VisuEvo® is a preservative-free eye drop that prevents excessive evaporation of the tear film. Its unique formula contains omega-3 essential fatty acids, Vitamins A and D and ultra-filtered phospholipids that facilitate tear film presentation and control evaporation.

All three products are contact lens-friendly and can be used for 180 days after opening.

Shop now

References

  1. Davis, J. A., Ousler, G. W., III, Langelier, N. A., Schindelar, M. R., Abelson, R., & Abelson, M.B. (2006, May). Seasonal changes in dry eye symptomatology. Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science, 47(13), 280. Accessed January 2022.
  2. NHS England. ‘Dry Eyes’. Accessed January 2022.
  3. Wimpole Eye Clinic. ‘Why Are My Eyes So Scratchy and Dry’. Accessed January 2022.
  4. Kumar, N., Feuer, W., Lanza, N. L., & Galor, A. (2016, August 1). ‘Seasonal variation in dry eye’. Ophthalmology, 122(8), 1727-1729. Accessed January 2022.
  5. Kleenex. ‘Take Control of Your Hay Fever This Summer’, 04/21. Accessed February 2024.
  6. NHS England. ‘Hay fever’, 04/02/21. Accessed December 2022.
  7. Essilor. ‘How does hayfever affect your eyes’. Accessed December 2022.
  8. Dean McGee Eye Institute. ‘How to Tell the Difference Between Dry Eye and Allergies’. Accessed December 2022.
  9. Nidirect. ‘Hay fever’. Accessed December 2022.
  10. Mangan, B Richard. ‘When Allergy and Dry Eye Collide’, Review of Optometry. Accessed January 2022.
  11. Ousler GW 3rd, Workman DA, Torkildsen GL. ‘An open-label, investigator-masked, crossover study of the ocular drying effects of two antihistamines, topical epinastine and systemic loratadine, in adult volunteers with seasonal allergic conjunctivitis.’ Clin Ther. 2007 Apr;29(4):611-6. Accessed January 2022.
  12. Alaina, L. ‘Artificial Tears: How to Select Eye Drops for Dry Eyes’, Mayo Clinic. Accessed Jan 2022.
  13. MebioPatch Instructions For Use (IFU). Accessed December 2022.
  14. Air Things. ‘What is Pollen?’. Accessed December 2022.
  15. Forefront Dermatology. ‘6 Tips to Help Control Your Hay Fever Symptoms’. Accessed December 2022.
  16. Medical News Today. ‘How to identify a grass allergy’, 01/06/2020. Accessed December 2022.
  17. Big Box Cars. ‘Why Do You Need to Change Your Pollen Filter?’. Accessed December 2022.
  18. SharkClean. ‘5 Cleaning Tips for Hay Fever Sufferers’. Accessed December 2022.
  19. Lloyds Pharmacy. ‘How to minimise the symptoms of hay fever’, 07/07/22. Accessed December 2022.
  20. Jyothi Thomas, George P. Jacob, Lekha Abraham, and Babu Noushad. ‘The effect of smoking on the ocular surface and the precorneal tear film’, Australas Med J. 2012; 5(4): 221–226. Accessed December 2022.
  21. National Allergy. ‘Laundry Advice For Allergy Sufferers’, 02/01/14. Accessed December 2022.
  22. VisuXL Eye Drops Instructions For Use (IFU). Accessed December 2022.
  23. Dresden, Danielle. ‘Some of the Best Gel Eye Drops for Dry Eyes for 2022’, Medical News Today, 13/10/21. Accessed January 2022.
  24. VisuXL Gel Instructions For Use (IFU).Accessed December 2022.
  25. Brancato R, Fiore T, Papucci L, et al. ‘Concomitant Effect of Topical Ubiquinone Q10 and Vitamin E to Prevent Keratocyte Apoptosis After Excimer Laser Photoablation in Rabbits’. J Refract Surg 2002; 18: 135-9. Accessed January 2022.

Back to news

Everything You Need To Know About Dry Eye In Winter

As the nights draw in and the weather begins to get colder, many sufferers of Dry Eye Syndrome will be worrying about the winter months ahead and what it means for their condition.

 

What is Dry Eye Syndrome?

Dry Eye Syndrome is a common eye condition that affects one in four people in the UK. As the name suggests, it is a condition that causes a dryness in the eyes. It’s common and isn’t usually anything to worry about, but there are certain factors which could increase the likelihood of you developing Dry Eyes:
– Age (if you’re over 50 then you may be more likely to get Dry Eyes.)
– Menopause
– Underlying health conditions
– Taking certain medications
– Smoking or drinking alcohol
– Wearing contact lenses
– Prolonged screen time
– Frequently travelling by plane

 

What are the symptoms of Dry Eye Syndrome?
If you suffer with any of the following symptoms, it may be an indication that you’re affected by Dry Eye Syndrome.
– A stinging, burning, itchy or scratchy sensation in your eyes
– A feeling of having something in your eyes
– More grit in the eyes than usual
– Redness around the eyes
– Blurry vision
– More sensitive to light than normal
– Watery eyes
– Difficulty wearing contact lenses
– Difficulty with night time driving

dry eye symptoms

 

What causes Dry Eye Syndrome?
The main cause of Dry Eye Syndrome is a lack of lubricating tears to the eyes, resulting in the surface of the eye becoming dry and irritated. This can happen for numerous reasons which we’ve previously listed above , but the change in weather and the onset of winter could also aggravate the condition.

 

Are dry eyes worse in winter?
While people who suffer from Dry Eye Syndrome usually experience symptoms all year round, these symptoms can get worse in winter.[1] During winter, the air becomes colder and bitter winds can create harsh outdoor environments. This weather causes many people to suffer from cold weather conditions like dry skin or chapped lips, and our eyes are no exception.[2]
Furthermore, increased use of central heating and electric heaters makes the air inside our homes and places of work drier, increasing the risk of dry, itchy eyes inside as well as outside.

 

How do you get rid of Dry Eyes in the winter?
Although you can’t cure Dry Eye Syndrome permanently, the good news is, there are lots of ways to help relieve symptoms of Dry Eyes in the winter.

Drink lots of fluids
This is important all year round, but especially in winter, as keeping your body hydrated helps to maintain moisture in your eyes.[3] Although it’s hard with Christmas and New Year, reducing your alcohol intake can help to alleviate your symptoms. This is because alcohol increases the sugar levels in your blood, which can cause your lenses to swell and blur your vision. Additionally, alcohol dehydrates the body which can leave your eyes feeling itchy or cause a stinging sensation.[4]

dry eye

Don’t let heat blow directly onto your face
Hot air blowing directly towards your face can reduce moisture in your eyes. So when you are using portable heaters, or car heaters this season, make sure the heat is directed towards your body, not your face, to avoid this problem.[5] Hairdryers could also aggravate Dry Eyes, so where possible, it might help to let your hair dry naturally rather than using a hairdryer.[6]

Don’t get too close to wood-burning fires
We all love a cosy open fire when it’s cold outside. But unfortunately, the smoke can be irritating for sufferers of Dry Eye, especially when the fire is outside as wind can blow the smoke directly towards your face, causing itching and burning sensations. So, it’s best to keep a safe distance away or avoid open fires all together this season if you are suffering from Dry Eye Syndrome. When it comes to fires indoors, ensure that you keep well back and try to keep the door of the stove closed as much as you can.

dry eye

Increase your Vitamin D intake
Research has suggested that Vitamin D could be able to alleviate Dry Eye symptoms by improving factors linked to the coating of tears that cover the front of the eye.[7] The best source of Vitamin D comes from sunlight, but in winter there is much less of this due to the shorter days. To ensure you’re still getting the right amount of Vitamin D, you can either take supplements or choose to eat foods that are naturally high in it. Some of these include sardines, salmon, red meat or egg yolk.[8]

Wear glasses when you go outside
Harsh winds and cold are the main culprits when it comes to making Dry Eyes worse in winter. Whenever you can, try to wear either sunglasses or wrap-around glasses when you go outside. These will help to protect your eyes from drying winds during the autumn and winter.[9]

Take breaks from too much screen time
Throughout winter, many of us may choose to trade walks outside for watching movies indoors. Dry Eye Syndrome has been linked to too much screen time, as when we stare at a screen for a long time, we don’t blink as often. Blinking helps to keep eyes moisturised, so when we spend too much time on the computer or watching TV it can cause them to become irritated or itchy.[10] Taking regular breaks from the screen can help to improve symptoms – even if you just get up to make a cup of tea!

 

What is the best over-the-counter medicine for Dry Eyes?
Our VisuXL® Gel can be used twice a day to help relieve symptoms of Dry Eye.
VisuXL® Gel forms a protective cushion over the surface of the eye, protecting it from the worst of the winter weather.[11] It provides 12-hour protection with just one drop, enabling you to go out all day in the cold and all night in a heated house without suffering from Dry Eye symptoms.[11]

 

To find out more about eye drops and to find an eye drop that suits you and your lifestyle visit our VISUfarma Shop.

 

References

  1. SmartEyeCare, ‘Tips for Managing Winter Dry Eye’, Accessed September 2022
  2. Kumar, Naresh, Feurer, William, Lanza, Nicole, and Glaor, Anat. ‘Seasonal Variation in Dry Eye’, Ophthalmology, 2015 Aug; 122(8): pp.1727–1729.
  3. Preidt, Robert. ‘How to Fight Dry Itchy Eyes this Winter’, Healthday Reporter, Dec. 26, 2017, Accessed August 2021
  4. Ferrier & Mackinnon Optometrists, ‘Dry January, Not So Dry Eyes’, Accessed September 2022
  5. Miller, Korin. ‘8 Ways in Keep Winter From Making Your Dry Eyes Worse’ Self, 11th December 2018, Accessed August 2021
  6. Higuera, Valenica, ‘Creating a Healthy Morning and Nighttime Routine for Chronic Dry Eye’ Healthline, July 24, 2019, Accessed September 2022
  7. P.Yildirim, Y.Garip Cimen, A.Aslihan Karci, Guler.T, ‘Dry eye in vitamin D deficiency: More than an incidental association’ August 2015, International Journal of Rheumatic Diseases 19(1). Accessed September 2022.
  8. NHS England, ‘Vitamin D’, Accessed June 2022
  9. Nall, Rachel. ‘Treating (and Preventing) Dry Eyes in Winter’, Healthline, 30th Sept. 2020, Accessed August 2021
  10. Nunez, Kirsten, ‘7 Ways to Ease Computer Vision Syndrome’, March 4, 2021, Accessed September 2022
  11. VisuXL Gel Instructions for Use (IFU)
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6 Ways to Prevent Dry Eye From Ruining Your Holiday

It’s that exciting time of year again when the office is buzzing with holiday plans in the sun.  However, for dry eye sufferers the thought of having to manage their condition whilst travelling can be daunting. 

Reduced humidity levels can cause symptoms of itchiness, redness and dry eyes. According to the WHO, humidity levels on an aeroplane are less than 20% which is lower than in the Sahara desert. Changes in temperature and dehydration can also have a drying effect on your eyes.[1]

We’ve put together these top tips to help you enjoy your holiday and prevent the symptoms of dry eye from ruining your well-earned break.

 

Drink plenty of water and combat Dry Eye Disease

Dehydration is one of the main causes of dry eye as it leads to decreased tear production – if you’re lucky enough to be travelling to warmer climes. Focus on hydration to ensure you’re combatting symptoms of your Dry Eye Disease by increasing your water intake this summer. 

 

Increase the humidity

Air conditioning reduces the humidity in a room which can cause dry and itchy eyes.[2] Consider packing a small humidifier or enquire at your hotel to find out if they provide them to combat the effects of the air conditioning unit. If your eyes become extremely dry or sore, turn the shower to hot and allow the bathroom to fill with steam. This extra moisture will soothe your dry eyes.

 

Ditch the screens to Ditch Dry Eye

Give your eyes a rest and reduce the amount of time you spend on your tablet or smartphone. Why not try taking a break to rest your eyes by going for a refreshing walk in beautiful scenery, or listening to the radio or a podcast.

 

A girl with dry eye sat in a park reading a book in summer, wearing sunglasses

Wear an eye mask to fight Dry Eye Disease

Your eyes can lose moisture even when your eyes are closed. Often the eyelids don’t close completely resulting in dry eyes. Wearing an eye mask when you’re sleeping or on an aeroplane can help to reduce dry eye symptoms.[3]

 

Leave the contact lenses at home

Wearing your glasses rather than contact lenses can reduce the symptoms of Dry Eye Syndrome. Give your eyes a well-earned rest and pop your glasses on to reduce irritation. If you aren’t a glasses wearer ensure you wear your sunglasses outside to prevent the wind from drying out your eyes.

 

Check your eye drops

VisuXL Gel provides 12-hour dosing with just one drop so use it before you travel and then pop it in your checked luggage to avoid the trouble of putting it in a separate liquids bag in your hand luggage.[4] If you prefer to travel with your eye drops in your hand luggage VisuXL Gel comes in a 10ml bottle so it’s perfect for travelling.

 

To find out more about eye drops and to find an eye drop that suits you, visit our Visushop website. If you’re looking for more advice on managing symptoms of Dry Eye Disease, take a look at our blog page. 

 

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References

  1. World Health Organisation, ‘Air Travel Advice’, Accessed August 2021
  2. NHS ‘Dry Eyes’, Accessed August 2021
  3. Danbury Dry Eye Doctors, ‘Preventing Dry Eyes During Air Travel’, Accessed August 2021
  4. VisuXL Gel Instruction for Use (IFU)
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