Road Cycling “It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.” -- Ernest Hemingway

Eye Irritation

Old 07-31-09, 11:09 PM
  #1  
DTownDave22
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Eye Irritation

I didn't see too much about this on the forums.

I have noticed that after a longer ride for me, say 45 miles or so and about three hours, sometimes an eye will be irritated a short while after I get home and it is somewhat persistent, for about 20-40 minutes though not severe but unpleasant and annoying.

Perhaps a small bug or some dirt got in my eye or something else. I remember riding and trying to clear my eye on my way back but it wasn't nearly as bad and prolonged as when I finally got home. Anyone ever have a problem with this and/or know what may cause it? I'm thinking maybe riding a bike with wind and/or air resistance since I'm riding a bike in the open, basically exposed to the elements (unlike being in a car) and I don't wear glasses or sunglasses.

I should perhaps track where I ride, for how long and note if it does/does not happen.
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Old 07-31-09, 11:22 PM
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Rupert
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I always wear sunglasses for this reason exactly. Glasses with pop-out lenses are the best; when it's dark i use yellow lenses, when the sun isn't very bright i use clear, and of course for sunny days i use a dark lens.

I've found that wind usually dries out my eyes and causes irritation, but my eyes become especially irritated when i ride on roads with heavy semi-truck traffic. Diesel fumes seem to be the worst for me and sometimes glasses don't even help that much. I'd say try some nice wrap-around style sunglasses with pop-out lenses like the Oakly M-frame's.

On the bugs... had a bee fly into my helmet vent the other day, that was no fun!
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Old 07-31-09, 11:50 PM
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Yeah, really common. Wind, pollution, allergens, dry air, any number of other irritants that you're exposed to on a ride can cause an inflammatory reaction on the surface of your eyeball. Wrap around lenses are best for protection (imagine that, 40 million cyclists can't be wrong). Also a few drops of artificial tears before and after the ride should help out a lot. Try some cool compresses too.
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Old 08-01-09, 08:20 AM
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what was the website that someone linked about a week ago that had thousands of safety glasses? i might pick up some clear lenses for riding with my contacts.
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Old 08-01-09, 08:33 AM
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Get some cycling specific glasses. They will cover your eyes more closely so less debris comes in under the glasses. You also want glasses that go high enough. If they don't, you have to tip your head back so you can see up the road. That will make your neck hurt.

I prefer glasses that don't have frames on the sides of the lenses, so my peripheral vision isn't blocked. Like these.

Performance has some nice inexpensive glasses.
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Old 08-01-09, 08:45 AM
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Some type of glasses are almost necessary for a comfortable ride. As far as the irritation, I would not worry too much about it. It seems like one of those problems that you can forget about and your body will adjust in time. One must cultivate a 'winning-brain' in order to achieve victory over the elements.
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Old 08-01-09, 09:05 AM
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Originally Posted by velocipede d View Post
Some type of glasses are almost necessary for a comfortable ride. As far as the irritation, I would not worry too much about it. It seems like one of those problems that you can forget about and your body will adjust in time. One must cultivate a 'winning-brain' in order to achieve victory over the elements.
Interesting theory I guess. But many chronic health problems start small and cascade out of control when they're neglected. I'm not saying the eye irritation is a serious problem at this point, but I would recommend not ignoring it completely.
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