Wildfire smoke in your eyes? Doctors say we need to do more to study its long-term impacts – CBC

Cataracts, other eye diseases linked to pollutants in wildfire smoke, experts say

Aug 04, 2023

Kate LeBlanc remembers how wildfire smoke that drifted across the skies of New Brunswick earlier this summer clung to her eyes, making them feel gritty.

“It’s like having a pair of glasses on that you can’t clean,” said the 71-year-old resident of Bathurst, N.B. “It really felt like fine grains of sand or something.”

The smoke, on top of her seasonal allergies, meant LeBlanc was constantly flushing out her eyes. She told CBC News that she used a bottle of eye wash drops and two bottles of allergy drops in just a few months.

“I basically hide out,” she said of how she prevents symptoms. “I don’t go outside, I don’t open the windows.”

This year, wildfires in Canada have been the worst on record, with winds pushing smoke across the country and into parts of the United States. On these especially hazy days, some eye doctors told CBC News they saw more patients reporting irritated eyes.

Read more: https://www.cbc.ca/news/health/eye-health-wildfire-smoke-1.6916982

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