By Dr. Paul Neumann OD

As we ring in the new year of 2023, it’s important to remember the toll that the holiday season can have on our eyes. The sugar rush from all of the festive treats and drinks can lead to a range of eye-related symptoms, including dryness, redness, and irritation. If you’re experiencing any of these issues, it’s time to detox your eyes and visit your optometrist.

One of the most common symptoms of too much sugar in the eyes is dryness. This can be caused by the body’s increased production of insulin, which can lead to decreased production of tears. Dry eyes can be uncomfortable and can even lead to vision problems if left untreated.

Redness is another common symptom of sugar overload in the eyes. This can be caused by inflammation in the blood vessels in the eyes, which can be triggered by high blood sugar levels. Red eyes can be accompanied by other symptoms like itching and burning, which can be uncomfortable and distracting.

Irritation is another common issue that can arise from consuming too much sugar. This can be caused by a variety of factors, including dryness and inflammation in the eyes. Irritation can lead to symptoms like watery eyes, sensitivity to light, and a feeling of fatigue or strain in the eyes.

If you’re experiencing any of these symptoms, it’s important to visit your optometrist to determine the cause and receive proper treatment. Your optometrist will be able to diagnose the root cause of your eye symptoms and recommend the appropriate course of treatment.

In the meantime, there are a few things you can do to detox your eyes and help alleviate some of these symptoms.

Here are a few tips:
1. Stay hydrated: Drinking plenty of water can help keep your eyes hydrated and reduce dryness.
2. Take breaks from screens: Spending long periods of time staring at screens can lead to eye strain and fatigue. Taking breaks every 20-30 minutes can help alleviate these symptoms.
3. Blink frequently: Blinking helps to lubricate the eyes and keep them moist. If you’re spending a lot of time staring at screens or working on a task, be sure to blink frequently to keep your eyes hydrated.
4. Use artificial tears: If your eyes are feeling dry, consider using artificial tears to help keep them moist. These can be purchased over-the-counter at your local pharmacy.
5. Avoid rubbing your eyes: Rubbing your eyes can irritate them further and potentially spread any infection. If your eyes are itchy, try using a cool compress or applying a small amount of over-the-counter eye drops to help alleviate the itch.

By taking care of your eyes and addressing any issues early on, you can help ensure healthy vision for the new year.