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Eye care tips for spring

Eye care tips for spring

Wednesday 31 March 2021

The arrival of spring coupled with the relaxation of lockdown restrictions sees us slowly starting to ease back into our old outdoor habits. It’s always a treat when that first warm spring day rolls around and we can finally face the elements without our coat zipped all the way up, but spring presents a few new adversaries as well as familiar foes that can harm our vision if we aren’t careful. Along with the beautiful weather comes its unwelcome partner in crime—allergies. Allergies can cause red, itchy and dry eyes that have a habit of putting a spanner in the works of our spring activities. So, what can we do to help mitigate those symptoms and other springtime side effects?

Wash your hands
We’ve been hearing this advice daily for the past year, but frequent hand washing is not only beneficial for reducing the spread of viruses, it also limits the amount of pollen introduced into our eyes. Unfortunately, many of us just can’t resist the urge to reach to for our faces to rub red and irritated eyes for momentary relief, inadvertently exacerbating the issue by transferring the pollen on our hands into our eyes. Regular hand washing can significantly reduce the uncomfortable consequences.

Don your shades
Not only does wearing sunglasses when we’re outside help block some of the allergens and irritants in the air from entering our eyes, it also protects them from harmful UV rays in the process. It can be all too easy to forget our shades on those first few sunny spring days, but it’s a great idea to keep them in the same place as our keys and do our best to remember to grab them before we head out of the door.

Swap contacts for specs
For those of us who are prone to allergy-related eye irritation, it is often helpful to stop wearing contacts for the first month or so of spring weather. While contacts don’t actually cause allergy symptoms, they can aggravate those that do appear.

Drink up
As the eyes have a high water content and heavy dependence on fluids to function healthily, hydration is just as important for their well-being as it is for the skin and the rest of the body, especially as the weather starts to get warmer. Studies recommend drinking at least two litres of water daily (although 8 x 8oz glasses sounds a lot less intimidating), to keep ourselves hydrated and our eyes moisturised, providing relief from the symptoms of irritated and dry eyes from the inside.

Mask up
For those of us who suffer from hay fever, checking the pollen count before we leave the house during the warmer months has become second nature, but allergy experts in the United States have noted that since wearing masks became commonplace, many people have reported changes to their allergy symptoms related to pollen. According to Dr. Sayantani Sindher, a professor of allergy and immunology at Stanford University School of Medicine in California, “There has been a decrease in symptom severity with mask use,” so maybe we shouldn’t be so quick to discard our face masks once this is all over.

Finally, and most importantly
You should make sure you schedule regular eye tests. Having one every two years is recommended, but your optometrist will let you know if they need to see you more frequently. Not only will they be able to advise about your eye health, they will also check thoroughly for other underlying health conditions that may go otherwise undetected.


  1. Met Office.
  2. Irisvision.
  3. Kadrmas Eyecare.
  4. All About Eyes.
  5. Eye Clinic London.
  6. Healthline.


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