Ophthalmologists recommend moderate exercise as part of an eye health program. Of the wide range of exercises, swimming is popular because of its low-impact nature but it can also be hard on the eyes – swimmers’ eye, which is characterized by burning, stinging, and redness of the eyes, is common among swimmers regardless of their level of skill and fitness.
If swimming is part of your exercise program, you should consider safety especially for your eyes. You may also want to consult with your ophthalmologist at Sam’s Club before choosing swimming when you have concerns about your eyes.
Chlorinated Water Can Be Hard On the Eyes
The tear film is the thin layer of tears that coats the eyes’ surface and keeps the eyes moist, clear and smooth. But it can be adversely affected by the exposure to chlorine, among other chemicals, in pools since these chemicals can wash away its moist layer. The result: Your eyes experience discomfort and shows signs of redness.
You can also develop dry eye, a condition where your eyes don’t produce sufficient quantity or quality of tears. Your eyes feel like they have grit stuck in them or your vision becomes blurry.
For these reasons, your eyes are more exposed to lingering bacteria, harmful pool chemicals, and dirt in the pool. Your risks for eye injuries and illnesses increase, especially when you are frequently in the swimming pool, not to mention that chlorine also has adverse effects on the eyes.
Adopt Safety Measures
If your ophthalmologist gives the go signal for swimming, you should wear protective gear even when you have no underlying eye-related medical condition. A few of the most important eye-related safety measures are:
- Wear swim goggles, which will keep the pool chemicals out of your eyes and, thus, protect your eyes’ tear film.
- Wash your closed eyes with tap water immediately after swimming. The fresh water will wash away the chlorine and other chemicals from your eyelids and eyelashes.
- Put lubricating eye drops on your peepers before and after your swimming exercise.
- Use gel tears when you have dry eyes. Gel tears are thicker artificial tears that can be placed on your eyes before wearing your goggles.
- Drink plenty of water since it keeps your body and, thus, your eyes hydrated.
Just before plunging into the pool, be sure to remove your eyeglasses and contact lens since your goggles will do the job of protecting your eyes.