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20/07/2022

We are witnessing a historic heat wave. High temperatures and sun exposure have a great impact on our body and it is worth insisting on the adverse effects on your eyes. 

Although eye health can be affected at any time of the year, there are some conditions that are more frequent during the summer months due to the rise in temperatures and the sun. These are some of the most common eye problems during the summer season: 

Eye dryness 

Although dry eye can appear at any time of the year, it is usually aggravated in low humidity environments, with air conditioners and the use of contact lenses. Symptoms often include eye redness, a feeling of heaviness, a gritty feeling in the eyes, or even sensitivity to light. 

Pterygium 

The main causes of pterygium and pinguecula are exposure to ultraviolet rays and wind, which is why it is more common in people who spend a lot of time outdoors and without adequate sun protection. Its prevention is based on sun protection. 

Eye infections 

In summer, the risk of eye infections increases, especially due to contact of water with the eyes. In the water, especially in swimming pools but also in tap water or in the sea, there are a large number of pathogens such as Acanthamoeba, which are a major cause of eye emergencies. Contact lens wearers are especially vulnerable and should under no circumstances bathe in them at the beach, in the pool or in the shower. 

Eye allergies 

Eye allergies are usually associated with spring pollens, but they are also common during the warmer months, during which they are abundant, such as mold or seeds. These allergens can increase symptoms such as dryness, itching, or a burning sensation. 

Prevention 

To take care of eye health in summer, it is essential to take care of the eyes throughout the year. These are some of the guidelines that specialists highlight the most: 

. Have ophthalmological examinations. These check-ups are much more than reviewing your eye prescription, so it is essential to carry them out with an ophthalmologist in a specialised centre. 

. Wear your lenses correctly. All contact lens wearers should have the supervision of an ophthalmologist and a contact lens specialist, since the main complications in the use of contact lenses are associated with user error. One of the typical mistakes is to swim with contact lenses, something that increases the risk of suffering eye infections. 

. Wear sunglasses: They must be approved, have the UV400 logo and be suitable for each type of activity. They are essential whether on the beach, in the pool or in areas where there is reflected light, such as the sea or snow in winter. Find out how to choose your sunglasses

. Wear swimming goggles or a diving mask if you swim in the sea or in the pool to protect your ocular surface from bacteria living in the water. 

. Use lubricating tears eye drops: these drops, available at any pharmacy, are to the eyes what moisturizing cream is to the hands. Specialists recommend applying them on demand to relieve dry eyes. 

. Drink plenty of water. : hot weather can cause dehydration and reduce the ability to produce tears, so hydrating yourself properly and drinking fluids is essential. 

. Limit exposure to allergens as much as possible, wearing sunglasses and washing face or eyes with serum if bothersome symptoms appear. 

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En verano solemos exponer nuestros ojos a una gran cantidad de riesgos como los rayos nocivos del sol, el contacto con el agua y la práctica de algunos deportes que requieren una protección ocular adecuada. El doctor Andrés Picó te ofrece las pautas para disfrutar de las vacaciones con garantías para tus ojos.

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