How to Care for your Eyes Whilst TravellingBy OmniOptics - October 11, 2012
Travelling can throw up many challenges, one of those that many people can easily overlook is looking after your eyes. Different environments and varying conditions can be a problem, especially if you have sensitive eyes. The last thing you need is to have to use your medical insurance whilst you’re abroad.
Here are some tips for making sure your eyes stay healthy when you’re travelling abroad.
Avoid direct sunlight
Sunlight can be extremely harmful to your eyes so sunglasses are a very good idea. You need to have glasses that protect you from 100% of UVA and UVB rays.
If you are in a tropical country or countries that have strong sunlight you can also get sun exposure when the skies are cloudy. Protect your eyes from the sun at all times, whether that means wearing sunglasses or a hat with a wide rim, its important.
Avoid looking directly into the sunlight. Sunlight can be extremely damaging to your eyes when you look directly into it. Avoid this especially if you are using zoom lenses on cameras, binoculars or a telescope.
The best times to avoid direct sunlight are between 10am and 2pm as the sun is strongest then, but a good rule is just to avoid it at all times. The sun can always be harmful so avoidance is the best ploy.
Be quick to seek medical attention
If you suffer an eye injury make sure you consult a medical professional quickly. They will know how serious your injury is and be able to determine the treatment you will need, whether it be immediately or if can wait until you arrive home.
There are specific symptoms that you shouldn’t leave and should have checked out immediately. If you have eye pain, your eyes are red, you have double vision, there is a scratch on your eye or your eye is bleeding you need to seek medical treatment.
Of course it might not be particularly easy when you’re abroad and you might not know the correct procedures but you shouldn’t let that deter you from seeking medical advice.
When you travel you are exposed to different environments than you would be back home. The plants and pollen levels are different. This could irritate your eyes causing them to be itchy and uncomfortable. This is probably one of the most common eye conditions when travelling.
You can buy over the counter medicines such as eye drops to help relieve the symptoms. Its best not to leave particularly irritated eyes as they normally won’t get any better if you are allergic to your new environment. Medicines can be effective so find a local pharmacy that can help you choose the right treatment.
Dry eyes can be a problem when you are abroad. Whilst travelling in aeroplanes or in buildings with air conditioning systems the low humidity can give you dry eyes.
You can try to get a humidifier in your hotel room if the air is dry. If you have control of your air conditioning, turn it down as much as is bearable, especially at night.
These are a few of the simple precautions you can take that will help you maintain your eye health when you are abroad. You can prepare before you go away such as buying good sunglasses or a good hat, maybe even stocking up with antihistamines if you know you are prone to allergic reactions.