Why Is Dry Eye Worse in the Summer

People look forward to enjoying the outdoors during the summer unless they have dry eye syndrome. Such people cannot wait for the summer to end. Dry eye is a condition that occurs when your eyes cannot produce enough tears to lubricate them. This can cause a stinging or burning sensation or cause sore eyes and irritation.

If a patient does not seek medical attention, it can get worse. Even though this condition is also common during the winter, it gets worse and uncomfortable during the summer. The low humidity causes evaporation of some of the layers of the tears and without enough lubrication, the eyes become vulnerable to inflammation and infections.

Why Is Dry Eye Worse in the Summer?

Dry eye syndrome is worse in the summer because of the following:

  • Change in living conditions

People tend to stay outdoors a lot where there is low humidity and when they are finally indoors, they sit in air-conditioned rooms or spaces without ventilation. On average, Americans spend more than 16 hours per day at low humidity. In such conditions, the air becomes extremely dry, which, in turn, dries out their eyes causing discomfort.

  • Sunshine

While people enjoy the outdoors, they are exposing their eyes to the sun which leads to a lot of squinting. With dry eye, this causes additional stress and further irritation.

  • Sweat

People tend to sweat more during the summer. It becomes bad when it starts to roll down toward the eyes with all the sunscreen and bacteria found on the face. This can cause further irritation to someone with dry eye syndrome.

  • Sunscreen

During the summer, most people do not leave the house without applying sunscreen. This ensures their skin is protected against harmful UV rays. With all that sunscreen, some can find its way to the eyes blocking the glands in the eyelids making it worse for a person with dry eye syndrome.

  • Water

People tend to engage in activities like swimming, surfing, and snorkeling during the summer. Swimming pools contain chlorine, which can irritate and worsen dry eye. The beach also has sand that can get in the eyes especially when it is windy.

  • Smoke

During the summer, people spend a lot of time around campfires and cookouts, and with that comes smoke. The smoke has tiny particles that can cause severe irritation to someone with dry eye syndrome.


Here’s how you can prevent your dry eye condition from getting worse during the summer.

Hydrating throughout the day can help improve the quality and quantity of one’s tears. When outdoors, ensure you are taking enough water to hydrate your body or in this case your eyes. If you wear contacts, switch to glasses to minimize the irritation caused by contacts when the eyes become dry.

With dry eye, your facial hygiene should always be on point. Wipe your face throughout the day with water-based wipes. But make sure to wash it at the end of the day. Go for sunscreen sticks for your face instead of sprays. When getting inside any body of water, make sure to wear proper eyewear.

If you are experiencing dry eye and want to get a grip on the problem, visit Urban Optics for a professional eye checkup. You can call (979) 401-0800 to book an appointment, or just walk into our offices located in College Station, Texas.

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