The best part about winters in North India is the snow. A typical white winter, playing in the snow and warming up with a hot cup of cocoa is just the thing you need to destress. Some of the popular winter destinations in North India are Auli, Manali, Gulmarg, Leh, Shimla, and Srinagar; the perfect getaway to escape the winter blues. It’s no wonder that many people head out to the hills to breathe fresh air, especially with the alarming increase in air pollution across the country.
North India, in particular, has soaring pollution levels. According to the Central Pollution Control Board, Delhi is one of the worst-hit areas with an Air Quality Index (AQI) of 411. Big cities like Delhi, Ghaziabad, Noida, Agra, and many more face various health and safety issues like respiratory disorders, poor visibility, dry eyes, and deteriorating vision. In this article, we address the eye problems caused due to air pollution as it has been a concern for the people living in the north, especially children.
How does air pollution affect your eyes?
Air pollution is the presence of toxic and harmful substances within the atmosphere. Thanks to the centuries of bad environmental habits, the earth, our only home, has slowly been deteriorating. But the ill effects don’t stop there, these toxic and hazardous materials have seeped through the soil, water, and air resulting in health problems for us. Children are especially affected by air pollution. The toxic gases, smog, and debris in the air can damage their eyes. Air pollution is also known to cause conjunctivitis and in severe cases vision loss.
Parents if your child experiences these symptoms visit an eye doctor immediately. Look out for these warning signs:
- Red eyes
- Watery eyes
- Burning or gritty sensation
- Soreness and swelling
- Itchy eyes
- Dry eyes
- Eye discharge
- Blurry vision
As parents, you would want the best eye care for your child. Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered with these winter eye care tips to combat air pollution.
Also Read: How To Protect Your Eyes From Pollution
Winter Eye Care Tips For Kids
1. Stay Indoors
After almost two years of social distancing and isolation, this prevention step seems difficult especially with everything opening up now. However, it’s better to be safe than sorry, given the new COVID variant, Omicron, making headlines across the country. So keep your kids indoors this winter and protect their eyes from air pollution and other harmful conditions.
2. Splash Your Eyes With Water
Harmful gases like carbon monoxide present in the air can cause eye irritation and itchiness. Splashing your eyes with cool water every few hours will help alleviate the discomfort. Turn this healthy eye habit into a fun activity for your kids, their reward is splish-splashing in the water!
3. Blink Often
One of the most common eye problems caused by air pollution is dryness. Simple eye exercises such as blinking and palming can go a long way in protecting your child’s eyes this winter. Get your kids to blink often and give their eyes a break. We suggest having a blinking competition to lighten the mood.
Also Read: Keep Calm And OMM: Yoga For Eye Health
4. Limit Screen Time
Air pollution and screen time are like tag-team villains on your eyes. While Captain Planet would definitely bust this evil scheme in a jiffy, you won’t need him just yet. Online school and homework should be the only screen time allowed. The ideal screen time for kids depends on their age, for infants and toddlers the recommended screen time is none at all. For kids aged between two to five years the recommended screen time is one hour a day. As your kids grow it’s up to you to decide what the ideal screen time should be as per their needs and age. Ensure that your kids watch high-quality content to prevent eye problems.
Also Read: 7 Tips And Tricks To Limit Your Child’s Screen Time
5. Wear Eyeglasses Outdoors
Whether your child has a prescription or not, eyeglasses can be a great way of adding an extra layer of protection to your child’s eyes. Glasses can shield their eyes from dust, smog, and other harmful substances in the air. We suggest Lenskart’s Blu Lens Glasses for additional protection.
6. Maintain An Eye-Healthy Diet
A diet rich in omega 3 fatty acids, vitamin A, iron, and many more essential nutrients will help keep your kids vision at optimal levels. If your child is a fussy eater, add these foods through fun recipes like smoothies and milkshakes or plate them in various shapes like their favorite cartoon characters.
Also Read: Children’s Eye Health: Essential Vitamins And Food For Good Eyesight
7. Teach Your Kids The Importance Of Hygiene
Last but definitely not least, maintaining proper eye hygiene is important to prevent infections caused by air pollution. Teach your kids the importance of washing their hands thoroughly after playtime, before meals, and after returning home. It’s also vital to teach them not to rub or touch their eyes.
As the Air Quality Index increases day after day during the winters, it’s wise to educate your kids about the importance of proper eye care. Eye exercises, eye care tips, and eye-healthy foods go a long way in maintaining and improving eye health. Regular eye examinations every year is also a great way of reassuring yourself of your eye health and catching any eye problems early. Just as their overall health needs special attention during the pollution-filled winters, so do their precious eyes, wouldn’t you agree?