How to prevent dry eyes when wearing a face mask

Whether you’re a healthcare worker or not, wearing a mask is a must at work or going out. If you wear glasses, they may fog up whenever you breathe. anti fog glasses The longer you wear a mask, the more likely your eyes are to feel sore, dry or tired. This is because your breath increases airflow around your eyes. Your breath makes your normal eye tears evaporate. This makes them feel sore, dry or tired. Medical tape can help along the top of your mask. However, air can still get in. There's a name for this sort of dry eyes. It's called Mask Associated Dry Eye. mask associated dry eye Image courtesy of University of Waterloo's COVID Eye Facts We feel your frustration of having to wear a mask. We’ve helped hundreds of people around Australia and New Zealand during the coronavirus. Wearing a mask shouldn’t get in the way of your normal day.

How good would you feel if you can wear a face mask without getting dry or sore eyes?

You can’t get by without wearing a mask or you risk a significant fine. Plus you get stern looks from everyone around you. Don’t let a face mask cause you to lose your evenings to sore, dry or tired eyes. Our dry eye glasses give your eyes comfort and protection from airflow. They also block out dust, wind, pollen and airborne particles. Plus they prevent your normal tears from evaporating. So you may not have to put many drops in. Since they sit close to the eyes, how easily do they fog up? We recommend you get Optifog lenses in your dry eye glasses. These lenses are made to prevent fogging. Even after keeping them in the freezer for a week, they still didn’t fog up in our tests.

To get your dry eye glasses:

  1. Select the dry eye glasses you like
  2. Try them on at home
  3. Enjoy feeling relief again when you put on a face mask

Do you wear prescription glasses? We can make glasses for distance, reading or multifocal/progressive lenses. Got Private Health Insurance? Yes, you can claim your optical rebate against these. Some funds cover between $100- $300 depending on your fund. Imagine one month from now, your eyes feeling better than they ever have at work or out in public. You won’t have to squint your eyes. Don't feel afraid of anything blowing on your eyes. dry eye glasses

Dry eye glasses with Optifog Prescription Lenses.

One of our customers, Emma Guglietta said that she struggled to work in a hospital environment with drying air-conditioning. “I was really struggling at work to cope with the environment when I found out about these on one of the Facebook support groups. I wear multifocals so was a bit apprehensive to order online without trying on- but these are perfect for my needs. I am now able to tolerate the dry working environment and can just pull off the silicone shield to have a normal pair of glasses, at a great price too! Will use these for air travel as well, essential item for those with dry eyes. Oh and they are really comfortable.” Emma Guglietta, verified customer

What if your eyes felt good even when you wear a face mask?

Call us on 1300 393 626 to arrange your try-on pack today. Our dry eye glasses let you wear a face mask without getting sore eyes.
July 07, 2021 — Mary Knight

Dry Eye Glasses

The eyes are the most exposed parts of the body. To work well, our eyes need to stay open and keep clear. But our environment often throws things at our eyes like,
  • Wind
  • Dust
  • Pollen
  • Smoke
  • Grit
  • Low humidity
Each of these factors disrupt the layer of tears that covers our eyes, known as the tear film.

So what is the tear film?

The tear film is a complex mix of oil, water and mucous to help us see. This is anchored to the clear part of the eye, called the cornea. It works like a delicately balanced structure. It has an outer oily layer and inner watery/mucous layer.

How does our environment affect our normal tears?

Every time we blink, a new tear surface is ‘painted’ over the surface of our eye. Blinking refreshes parts of the tears that have evaporated or been disrupted by our environment. But sometimes a dry, dusty, windy or air-conditioned environment can put too much strain on our eyes. One of the main cycles is caused by evaporation. With less water, our tears become saltier (i.e. hyperosmotic). This salty environment leads to liquid stress on the cells on our eyelids, cornea and conjunctiva. This is called inflammation. We start to see more friction in the eyes, leading to further stress, and a cycle of increasing inflammation, saltiness and stress on the eyes, according to this scientific article. If you’ve ever had red, irritated, sore, stingy, light-sensitive, burning or watery eyes, you’ll know what inflammation feels like in your eyes!  

Will putting artificial tears in your eyes fix inflammation?

No. Putting drops in just makes them moister, rather than removing the stress (and chemical signals) that bathe the cells that make up your eyelids, conjunctiva and cornea. Our eyes still feel sore and irritated and we may have to stop. You should see your optometrist or ophthalmologist if your eyes are sore, red or uncomfortable for more than one day.

How can we prevent this irritation?

Imagine being able to get your work done, without having to stop to wipe or rub your eyes. If you work in a tough environment, or your eyes are sensitive, you need to reduce factors that cause stress and inflammation to your eyes. If you have Dry Eye Syndrome, protection is even more important, according to the International Dry Eye Workshop (DEWS II). Rather than wait for your eyes to get sore, red and painful, you need eye protection. Your 7Eye/Ziena Eyewear comes with Airshield and helps form a protective seal around your eyes. It blocks out dust, wind, pollen and air-conditioning. Airshield not only protects your eyes from foreign objects, but it retains a humid environment around your eyes. This keeps your tear layer stable and makes your eyes feel better.  

What evidence is there that they work?

One clinical study on moisture retention glasses, like Wiley X Facial Cavity Seal, show that they provide improved comfort for:
  • Air conditioning
  • Wind
  • Computer
  • TV
  • Reading
Improving the humidity, even slightly, can also improve dry eye symptoms, according to this article.

What do I look for in my 7Eye eyewear?

To protect your eyes best, It is important to get the best fit of eyewear for you. Make sure that the fit is snug and that there are few gaps underneath or above the eyewear. Make sure you regularly clean the padded foam or silicon eyecup or gasket. This helps reduce a buildup of natural bacteria from your skin (e.g. staphylococcus epidermidis, propionibacterium acnes). These bacteria can make your eyes feel more irritated, red and dry. Make sure that you clean your gasket as directed. Replace your eye cup regularly to ensure that it doesn’t get too dirty and so that it continues to form a good seal around your eyes.  

What else can you do for dry eyes?

Dry eye treatment is more than just adding more drops to your eyes. It’s about reducing the cycle of inflammation in your eyes, and helping them feel comfortable. 7Eye & Ziena Glasses are a valuable tool to give you relief from dry eyes. They give you the freedom to do all the things you love again. My patients love theirs!   Dr Leigh Plowman Optometrist
July 07, 2021 — Mary Knight