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Eye Care In Extreme Conditions

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					As we have experienced some of the most extreme weather conditions in
recent years, through the flurry of disgruntled travelers and burst
pipes, there are those among us that are raising their mulled wine
glasses in glee...the winter sport enthusiasts.However, as they joyously
take to the slopes, the cold snap brings its own challenges for outdoor
enthusiasts and one hazard that's easy to forget is protection and
general health care for the eyes.Surprising - considering eye injuries
are the most common infliction suffered during ski and snowboarding
activities and the high importance of being able to see where you are
going in the snow. Conjunctivitis, keratitus, cataracts and retina damage
are just some of the eyesight problems facing winter sports enthusiasts
that neglect their eye health.The human body is able to repair most of
our organs in many ways, but the lens of the eye can't repair itself, the
risk of irreversible damage is high and we should be diligent in
protecting our eyes.During the dark winter months with less daylight
hours and temperatures dropping, the sun may feel less intense, but the
winter sun sits at a different angle, lower in the sky and can be so
powerful it will burn your eyes - and in extreme cases, cause snow
blindness comparable to sunburn. The ultraviolet light and glare from the
sun is heightened by its reflection against the snow.Wearing sunglasses
with UV protection of at least 95% is the best way to protect your
eyesight against the sun and avoid excessive UV exposure. The good news
is sunglasses look cool, an integral component in the winter collection
of top designers from Armani to Versace. With the accessibility of
hundreds of styles to suit all tastes and the added bonus of looking good
on the piste, sunglasses should be an obvious inclusion to our winter eye
care regime.The surface of our eyes often become irritated by harsh winds
and snow sport enthusiasts should protect their eyes using properly
fitted goggles with polycarbonate lenses, but it is important to make
sure you have a proper fit, lenses and sun protection. Those with less
than perfect vision benefit from the availability of prescription
goggles.Those who prefer to wear contact lenses are even more susceptible
to dry eye syndrome caused by the dry, cold air and harsh winds at this
time of year. Soft lenses especially require a lot of moisture to prevent
them hardening and sticking to the eye which may cause them to change
shape. But following the learned advice of limiting outdoor exposure and
reducing the length of time in the eyes is no contest between the lure of
optimum snow time. The additional peril of contact lenses dislodging
during a run only increases their frustration.

				
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posted:7/14/2011
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