Summer Traveling With Dry Eye
Last updated: November 2021
When I was first diagnosed with dry eye, I did not realize just how tricky it can be when wanting to travel. These are just a few of my tips that I have found useful for myself. I hope they can help you, too!
My first tip is about flying by airplane. The humidity on an airplane can be quite low, and people that don’t suffer from dry eye can find that being in the air is in fact, drying. When I first sit down, I make sure the overhead vent is pushed away from me or turned off. I always have a hat on just in case a breeze from another seat can reach me.
Also, I try to minimize my screen time, because that is known to be an irritant if done too long. Lastly, I bring a lot of my artificial tear drops and ointment if needed. Be sure to check the TSA guidelines for a final reference in regards to what you can bring.
My second tip while traveling is about going by car. I find that the air conditioner vents really dry my eyes out, so I make sure those aren’t blowing directly on my eyes either, just like on the airplane. I also found a mini traveler humidifier for your car can really make a difference. You fill it up with water, and it can be plugged into a USB outlet. This gives me a little more moisture in the air, especially if it is hot.
Last but certainly not least, sunglasses. Staring out that big windshield can be bright, and if the sun is out in full swing, it can be hot! I think it's good to wear sunglasses that can protect from UV rays, especially while driving or going as a passenger.
My third tip is to bring your eye drop prescriptions with you, if that applies. Since I am using Xiidra, if I go anywhere for an extended period of time, I bring my prescription with me.
Sometimes baggage gets lost, or you may lose your purse/duffel bag. If I am in a pinch and need my prescription, I can try to find a pharmacy to fill it or partially fill it until I can get back home. I have found that my eye doctor will sometimes have samples on hand that I can use to get me by.
Fourth and final tip that I have found useful is to make sure I carry a bottle of water with me everywhere I go. I try to drink as much water as I can before my trips to get my body very hydrated. When we are on vacation having fun, it can be hard to remember these things, but staying up on water intake can have your eyes thanking you as the day progresses.
There are a lot of options out there for water bottles that will keep your water cold for over 24 hours; that is impressive.
Most of all, be sure to have fun, and I think these little tips can help ensure the eyes they will be happy, too!
Has having dry eye helped you better advocate for yourself?