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Nov 1, 2023 | Dry Eye Syndrome

Why Are Dry Eye Symptoms Worse in the Fall? 

Fall is a beautiful season in Albuquerque, New Mexico. With the leaves changing color and the air getting crisper, it’s the perfect time for outdoor activities. However, for people who suffer from dry eye, fall can be a challenge. Dry eye can be uncomfortable and even painful, making it difficult to enjoy all the season’s festivities.  

If you’re struggling with dry eye this fall, you may be wondering why your symptoms get worse this time of year. Keep reading to learn why this is the case and how you can find relief.  

What is dry eye?  

Dry eye is a condition that happens when your eyes don’t make enough tears or when the tears evaporate too quickly. This can happen for a variety of reasons, including age, certain medications, and medical conditions like rheumatoid arthritis and Sjögren’s syndrome. Common symptoms include dry, irritated eyes, redness, sensitivity to light, and a feeling like something is stuck in your eyes.  

Why is dry eye more common in the fall? 

So, why are dry eye symptoms worse in the fall? There are a few reasons. First, as the weather gets colder, we turn on our heaters, which can dry out the air in our homes and workplaces. This lack of humidity can make our eyes feel dry and irritated. Second, fall allergens like ragweed pollen can trigger an allergic reaction in our eyes, leading to redness, itching, and irritation.  

Also, on chilly days, it’s tempting to stay indoors and watch a movie or surf the internet. However, increased screen time can strain our eyes and cause us to blink less, which can worsen dry eye symptoms. Lastly, wind can also dry out our eyes, and fall is often a windy season in many parts of the country. 

Preventing dry eye during fall  

If you often suffer from dry eye in the fall, there are a few things you can do to find relief. Make sure to stay hydrated and try using a humidifier to increase the humidity in your home or workplace. Take frequent breaks from screens and follow the 20-20-20 rule: every 20 minutes, look at something 20 feet away for about 20 seconds. 

It’s also important to avoid windy environments and protect your eyes from the wind by wearing protective eyewear like sunglasses or goggles. For mild cases of dry eye, you can try over-the-counter dry eye drops to keep your eyes lubricated. 

Don’t let dry eye symptoms ruin your fall season! By understanding what’s causing your dry eye and taking preventative measures, you can enjoy this beautiful season without discomfort. If your dry eye symptoms persist, schedule an appointment with Casey Optical Co. in Albuquerque. Our experienced eye doctor Dr. Christine Kniffen can identify the underlying cause of your dry eye and develop a customized treatment plan. Give us a call today to book an exam!