Hiking Can Cause Dry Eye in Long, Hot, Dry Summer of 2015 but Is Preventable

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Bio-Logic Aqua® Research founder Sharon Kleyne will discuss hiking, accelerated body water evaporation, dehydration and dry eye on her Sharon Kleyne Hour™ Power of Water® radio broadcast of August 31, 2015.

Bio-Logic Aqua® Research founder Sharon Kleyne

When hiking in hot, dry weather, the three things that must function properly should a hiker becomes lost, injured or sick, are the brain, the legs and the eyes. Of the three, the eyes are the most frequently neglected even though hiking dry eye is easily prevented – provided the hiker is educated about accelerated evaporation, dehydration and dry eye. Hiking dry eye will be the topic of the upcoming Sharon Kleyne Hour™ Power of Water® radio show hosted by Water Life Science® advocate Sharon Kleyne.

The danger of hiking dry eye and other dehydration symptoms are intensified during the current 2015 summer hiking season because summer started very early in most parts of the country and has been unusually hot and dry.    

Kleyne will discuss hiking, accelerated body water evaporation, dehydration and dry eye on her Sharon Kleyne Hour™ Power of Water® radio broadcast of August 31, 2015. For the live show or a podcast, go to http://www.SharonKleyneHour.com.    

The syndicated broadcast, hosted by Kleyne, is heard weekly on VoiceAmerica and Apple iTunes. The education oriented show is sponsored by Bio-Logic Aqua® Research – Water Life Science®, founded by Kleyne and specializing in fresh water, the atmosphere, body surface evaporation and dehydration. The Research Center’s signature product is Nature’s Tears® EyeMist® for dry eyes.

“Think of the human body as a walking sponge,” Kleyne explains. As long as the sponge is wet, all parts function normally. As the sponge begins to dry out in the hot sun, systems begin to break down. The sponge dries out – which means the water inside the sponge evaporates – largely because of water vapor conditions in the surrounding atmosphere.

When the surrounding temperature is hot, says Kleyne, it excites the water molecules inside the sponge. This causes some of the molecules to shoot outward as water vapor – much like steam rising above a cup of hot tea. Because hot air stimulates evaporation, hot air is much more likely to be saturated with humidity than cold air. When air is saturated, the evaporation rate slows. The most dangerous situation for a walking sponge – or a walking human – is hot dry air.

In hot weather, says Kleyne, the body loses internal water from the blood via perspiration and surface water from the skin and eyes via accelerate evaporation.

The ocular tear film covering and protecting the eye is 99 percent water. A loss of two percent of the tear film’s water content, according to Kleyne, can cause inflammation of the conjunctiva (the membrane covering the eyeball). Inflammation is further dehydrating to eyes. Dry eye symptoms include red, irritated, grainy or burning eyes, blurred vision, headache and fatigue. During a hot summer hike, dry eye symptoms may be accompanied by body dehydration symptoms such as disorientation, dizziness, fever and nausea.

Kleyne notes that the optic nerve, which controls vision, is second among the 12 cranial nerves and one of only two (along with the olfactory nerve) that originates in the brain. The other 10 cranial nerves originate in the brain stem. As a result, any problems experienced by the eyes are likely to affect the brain and any problems experienced by the brain are likely to affect the eyes.

Because of the brain-eye connection, Kleyne cautions, body dehydration can cause vision symptoms on a hike even when dry eye is not present. These symptoms can include loss of visual acuity (objects are seen but don’t register 100% in the brain) and tunnel vision. This can be extremely dangerous to a lost hiker.

To avoid accelerated evaporation, dehydration and dry eye (not to mention sunstroke), Kleyne recommends drinking lots of water when hiking and frequent rest in the shade. Sunglasses help prevent glare and traps beneficial moist air from the body. A headband will prevent perspiration from dripping into the eyes, which can be irritating, inflammatory and dehydrating.

Dry eye caused by accelerated tear film evaporation can also be prevented by increasing the humidity saturation in the atmosphere surrounding the eyes. The product Nature’s Tears® EyeMist®, from Kleyne’s Bio-Logic Aqua® Research – Water Life Science® supplements tear film moisture and slows evaporation by raising the humidity immediately in front of the eye.

©Bio-Logic Aqua Research. All rights reserved.

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Mikaylah Roggasch
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