Protecting Your Eyes in the Pool
Nothing sounds more inviting and relaxing in the heart of summer than a cool dip in the pool or ocean. Although many of us enjoy spending time outdoors with the fresh briny ocean air or sitting poolside soaking up the sun, these relaxing staycations/vacations may leave your eyes feeling itchy, dry, and irritated. Strong pool chemicals such as chlorine or dense salt water can often make your eyes dry, scratchy and irritated, or even impair your vision with blurriness.
There are countless reasons pool water and or salt water can negatively impact the health of your eyes. Water, untreated, can strip away the natural protective film that protects our eyes from germs so imagine the kind of damage that heavily chlorinated or dense salt water can do to your eyes. When this protective film disappears, germs see this as an open invitation and can wreak havoc in the way of uncomfortable and sometimes dangerous infections. Infections like red eye, eye irritation or chronic itchy eyes are just a few of the most common. Although chlorine kills germs, it does not kill them all and bacteria can spread quite quickly in pool water. Chloramine is also a known eye irritant. This along with the combination of disinfectants, insect repellents, oils, perfumes, sweat, and urine that enter the pool off of swimmers. All of these things are what cause the infamous “pool” smell that we so often find synonymous with summer. When these come in contact with your eyes, they may cause irritation, red eyes, blurry vision and or stingy pain.
While you enjoy a refreshing dip this summer with family and friends, please remember to follow these easy tips to keep eyes healthy and feeling great! If you have any symptoms that last longer than a few hours or more, please consult our doctors immediately. Preventative eyecare is the best approach to keeping eyes healthy.