Swimming Pool Eye Safety Tips


Eye health in Wilmington, NCNothing beats the allure of a shimmering swimming pool on a hot summer’s day. But before you dive in, make sure your eyes are adequately protected from the dangers that lurk under the surface.

Read on as the team at Intracoastal Eye shares tips to keep your eyes safe in and around the swimming pool.

Protect Your Eyes With Goggles

Pool water is tough on your eyes, no matter how well it is cleaned and disinfected. Treating a pool with chlorine kills most of the bacteria in the water, but not all of it. The surviving bacteria can get into your eyes and cause infections such as pink eye (conjunctivitis).

Infections aren’t the only concern. When chlorine reacts with dirt, urine and oils, it forms a compound called chloramine, which can mildly irritate your eyes. Red, uncomfortable eyes can ruin a fun day at the pool.

Thanks to chlorine and other chemicals, pool water can also wash away the natural tear film covering the surface of your eyes. This can lead to dry eye symptoms.

The best way to protect your eyes when swimming is to invest in a good pair of goggles. Well-fitting goggles will help keep pool water, chlorine and other chemicals out of your eyes.

Don’t Swim With Contact Lenses

Contact lenses are not designed to be worn underwater. They can fall out and get lost at the bottom of the pool, or they can shrink when exposed to water. Contact lenses can also trap harmful microorganisms against your corneas, where the germs can multiply and lead to infections that threaten your eye health and vision.

Take your contact lenses out before jumping into the pool. If needed, look for a pair of prescription goggles that offer lens correction. Our optical team would be happy to offer suggestions.

Wear Poolside Protection

Sun protection is key when spending time in or around a swimming pool or other water source. Sunlight reflects off water, which can be very dangerous to the health of your eyes. Wearing sunglasses that block out 99 to 100 percent of UV rays helps reduce the risk of photokeratitis (similar to a sunburn to the eyes) as well as the early onset of serious eye diseases like cataracts and macular degeneration.

Contact Our Eye Doctors

The team at Intracoastal Eye wishes you a wonderful summer and we are happy to offer more recommendations for eye safety tips when swimming. Please call or email us with any questions.