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Avoid eye trauma on the slopes with simple tips and tricks

As a predicted 1.5 million Brits will be going on a ski holiday this winter, 29% of whom will be lucky enough to go twice[1], we are warning of the dangers to your eyes on the slopes and are offering advice on how to maintain good eye health whilst away.

There are a number of ways to keep eyes healthy during a ski trip which reduce the risk of permanent damage and simple discomfort throughout the holiday. Not taking these kinds of precautions can even prove life-threatening if vision is affected whilst in action.

Clinical Services Director, Stephen Hannan said: “This ski season, a large number of people who are heading to the slopes will require vision correction; over 1 million will be wearing glasses and approximately 200,000 will opt for contact lenses. You should not ski or snowboard without the correct eyewear as you could cause severe injury, or even death, to yourself or other skiers.”

Optical Express’ Top Tips to keeping your eyes healthy on a winter ski trip, from Clinical Services Director, Stephen Hannan:


Contact lens wearers should keep a bottle of hydrating eye drops to hand

“Switching to contact lenses for skiing can be seen as a convenient solution for glasses wearers. However, the harsh, wintery conditions of skiing can often dry lenses out, making them uncomfortable to wear and difficult to remove, increasing the risk of developing a potentially sight threatening infection.  Optical Express’s peer review published LASIK data2 when compared with contact lens peer review published data3, shows that the risk of developing a sight threatening infection is four times greater per year of contact lens wear in comparison to after LASIK, and is twenty times greater per year of extended wear contact lens use. As well as posing a risk to eye health, contact lenses are also considered single use plastics which are having a huge, but often overlooked impact on the environment. New figures from Optical Express, suggest that over 750 million plastic lenses are being flushed down the drain or put in landfill every year.  


“If you are wearing contact lenses, you can try to keep your eyes moist and hydrated by using lubricating eye drops throughout the day.”


Invest in a pair of prescription goggles or sunglasses

“For the more seasoned skier who is likely to go year on year, or even twice within the same season, a pair of prescription sunglasses or goggles can be a great investment. All skiers should opt for goggles that offer protection from harmful UV rays when on the slopes, and by adding a prescription lens, it ensures you have clear vision to detect any potential hazards.”

Consider a permanent solution such as laser eye surgery

“Laser eye surgery gives you the freedom to enjoy outdoor pursuits such as skiing and snowboarding without having to worry about vision correction.

“Optical Express is the UK’s leading laser eye surgery provider whose surgeons have performed more than one million eye surgery procedures in the UK and over two million eye surgery procedures worldwide.”

Don’t overdo it at Après Ski!

“Although it is great to enjoy a few drinks at Après Ski, drinking excessive amounts of alcohol can cause temporarily blurred vision which can be extremely unsafe whilst skiing or even walking through the snow.

“Regularly exceeding recommended limits on alcohol consumption is likely to have a negative impact on your general health.   Prolonged heavy drinking can severely impact upon eye health and cause eye conditions such as AMD (age-related macular degeneration), cataracts and optic neuropathy, all of which can lead to blindness.”





[2] Infectious Keratitis after Laser Vision Correction: Incidence and Risk Factors (2017)

 [3] Contact lens-related microbial keratitis: how have epidemiology and genetics helped us with pathogenesis and prophylaxis 2016 F. Stapleton, N. Carnt



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