Are you one of the millions of people around the world who are living with dry eye, blepharitis or dysfunction of the meibomian glands? Consider preparing properly when you are traveling. Many factors can aggravate your dry eye symptoms while traveling.
Traveling by car
When traveling by car, air conditioning in the automobile can be particularly irritating to dry eyes. Aim the ventilation nozzles away from your face and reduce it to a minimum to be comfortable. When driving on the highway for a long time, your blinking frequency decreases a lot. Do blinking exercises and wear moisture chamber glasses. Also, avoid smoking in the car as cigarette smoke is particularly annoying for a dry eye.
Relative humidity in the aircraft cabin is usually less than 20 percent, which is very dry. This low level of moisture can be felt by a simple discomfort for those who do not have dry eyes. But if you have dry eye, it’s a whole different story. Consider using artificial tears and wearing a moisture chamber glasses inside the cabin of the aircraft. In all modern pressurized aircraft, half of the cabin air comes directly from outside and the other half is recirculated air which is filtered before being reintroduced into the cabin.
Dry Eye at the hotel
During my many trips, I noticed that the ambient air in the hotels is much drier than at home. Probably due to the presence of ventilation and air conditioning systems. In addition, there are many carpets in the rooms, which is not without consequences for sensitive, dry and even allergenic eyes. Consider purchasing a small portable humidifier for your hotel stays and especially, once again, wear moisture chamber glasses during the day. At night, make sure to sleep with a moisture retention mask.
Your destination will also be an important factor in how you will manage your dry eye symptoms. If you go to India in the area of the Bay of Bengal, where the climate is very humid it will not be the same as if you are traveling in a desert climate. If you are on the beach in a windy environment or if you are in the mountains, where the air is drier, you will have to think about protecting your eyes properly. For this, a good moisture chamber sunglasses is the right starting point. If you just keep putting artificial tears in your eyes wihtout protecting them, you will not overcome the problem.
If you are traveling in a cold or wintery country, be aware that heating indoors dries up the ambient air. Read the article on Dry Eye in Winter.
Your eyes need a moisture level greater than 50%
In order to reduce the unpleasant symptoms of dry eye, remember to always keep your eyes in an appropriate moisture level. This is true and possible even if you are not physically in a humid place. WEAR MOISTURE CHAMBER GLASSES. I will never say enough, but it is really the first step when you have dry eye symptoms. Do not let the dry syndrome poison your life. Act now and see the difference.
Artifical Tears when Traveling
As explained above, you will probably not be able to manage your dry eye problem simply by using artificial tears. Moreover, if you use them often, make sure that they are preservatives free. Artificial tears is good but very often not enough. Used in conjunction with a good pair of eyeglasses adapted to dry eye, they become much more effective.
Reduce contact lenses use while traveling
If you are used to wearing contact lenses, be aware that prolonged contact lenses use can contribute to the increase your dry eye symptoms. During your travels, it would be wiser to prefer your glasses. To be comfortable, contact lenses require moisture at all times. When traveling by plane, hotel or car for a long time, you are not in the ideal conditions to benefit from an optimum moisture level.
Drink a lot of water
When traveling or at home, dehydration is not good for your dry eye symptoms. Not only drinking plenty of water is good for your general health but also beneficial to limit the impact of dry eyes. If you are in a dry environment, drink even more water!
Use a portable humidifier
A small portable humidifier can make the difference between relative comfort and suffering in your hotel room. They are inexpensive, lightweight and easily transportable. Do not hesitate to use it during your stay abroad. Do not forget that hotels tend to be dry and you need a moisture level of at least 50% to be comfortable.
Night mask and moisture retention mask while traveling
Several people experience serious dry eye problems at night causing them to use lubricating ointments. Some people even have to wake up at night to apply artificial ointments and tears to their eyes. Limit or reduce dry eye symptoms at night by using a night mask or moisture retention mask. You can even use them while airplane travels and on long journeys by car. These products help retain moisture in your eyes while you sleep. For more information, read our article on dry eye at night.
If you are tanning, wear tanning goggles
A dry eye is an eye sensitive to light. You must wear sunglasses at all times when you are outdoors to protect your eyes from light. If you enjoy lounging in the sun, equip yourself with a quality tanning goggle specially designed to block 100% of sunlight. In addition, these glasses insulate your eyes with a rubber contour to create a moist and restful environment for your eyes.
Wearing a cap or hat is also a good idea in order to reduce the direct light that reaches your eyes.
If you are living with dry eye, blepharitis, meibomian gland dysfunction or Gougerot-Sjogren syndrome, take the time to do these little things to reduce your eye discomfort during your travels. Of course, all this stuff should also be applied in your daily life even if you are not in a traveling situation.
Enjoy your vacations! By following these tips, you will avoid letting your dry eye problem spoil your vacation and you will greatly reduce your eye suffering while traveling.