Climate Change and Eye Health and Wellness

It appears like whenever there is a heat wave or a major snow storm,
climate change is condemned for the weather condition. Still, when
it pertains to climate change, it isn’t just extremes in weather that
have people concerned. Eyes can be impacted by environment
change, particularly considering that the cornea, eyelid, sclera and
the lens are revealed to the elements. So, modifications in the
environment can affect eye health and wellness and vision.


At a National Institutes of Health symposium on the health and
wellness repercussions of climate change, it was stated that it is a
well-known fact that drier conditions can intensify the signs and
symptoms in those susceptible to completely dry eye. We can see
these areas of drought spread, so we are expecting to see people
who are prone to completely dry eye, however who may not be
symptomatic, who can go on to develop signs and symptoms of dry
eye.

An additional repercussion of climate change is an increase of air-
borne fragments that aggravate the eye. While air contamination has
actually been condemned for a rise in breathing problems, it has
likewise been revealed to contribute in eye illness. In China, Beijing
released a “red alert” warning to its citizens because of the high
levels of smoke in the air. The air quality index in the city was 99 for
the week of August 5, 2019. For comparison, the air quality index in
Los Angeles throughout that week was 56. Air quality of Beijing is not
only aggravating throat and lung problems, but it also irritates eyes
and can result in problems such as chronic blepharitis.


It isn’t simply fragments in the air that can damage the eye, UV
radiation as a result of ozone depletion is a reason for cataracts.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), a UN
organisation, 5% of the 18 million people who have cataracts had
their cataracts develop as a result of UV radiation. Ultraviolet light
encourages the production of oxygen-free radicals that are
accountable for clouding the eye’s lens. UV radiation can also play a
part in the growth of age associated macular degeneration in the
eyes.


Still, prior to you hiding under the covers because of air pollution as
well as the shrinking ozone layer, actions are being taken to deal
with contamination. In the US, the Clean Power Plan works to
minimize power plant emissions of CO 2 by 32 percent by 2030.
Likewise, several countries gathered in Paris recently to discuss ways
to reduce pollution and combat climate change. As for UV radiation,
things as simple as using sunglasses which are UV resistant and also a
large overhanging hat can minimize a person’s direct exposure to
harmful radiation.


Laws and preventive measures do not look much in comparison to
the enormity of the trouble. Still, climate change really did not take
place over night, so it is these so- called little points that are
enhancing eye health problems and the changes in the environment.

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