Cold weather prompts tear evaporation, reports Ducklo Eye Group. Similar to how wintertime weather dries out our skin, this lack of moisture dries out our eyes. But wait a minute, how is it that dehydration is the cause of overly teary eyes? Well, to make up for lost tear film, our glands compensate by producing an excess of tears. So much so that we may experience watery eyes while outdoors.
Alternatively, there’s another reason why you might find yourself “crying” while outside in the cold. Medically referred to as photokeratitis, the condition occurs when the eye suffers injury due to UV ray exposure (via the American Academy of Ophthalmology). Looking directly at the sun without proper eye protection is one way in which this damage can occur, but the reflection of UV rays can also cause harm, such as light that bounces off of snow. Specifically referred to as snow blindness, the condition can also occur in response to severely dry air or in the event that the top layer of the cornea freezes over. In addition to light sensitivity, redness, pain, and blurred vision, tearing is another symptom of photokeratitis.