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NorCal

Why Does Sweat Dripping off my Forehead Burn my Eyes?

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This is getting pretty annoying and probably dangerous. In my last Cross Country race about 1.5 hours through I was sweating pretty good. Once the sweat dripped off my forehead and into my eyes it burned like hell. It got so bad that I had to stop and rub my eyes for a minute and get back in the race (I was leading the race and ended up finishing about a minute behind the leader).

I thought I had pinpointed the problem to using a face wash and moisturizer on my entire face, so I only used it on my face below my eyes. A few days ago at the track I felt the same exact burning sensation when I was perspiring.

Any ideas as what is causing this problem and how to fix it?

Ideas are much appreciated.

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Get a female 'maxi-pad'....peel sticky off, and fasten to your helmet in forehead area. Presto! No more sweating in your eyes! 'Light flow days' are good for lesser days.

I've seen Scott Summers have his Dad duck-tape a monster maxi to his head before a hot GNCC.

The only draw-back.....you have "kitty-cats" on the brain all day long :doh: .

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Because sweat has salt in it.

ding ding ding, we have a winner. Try a sweatband or something like that under the helmet. Maxipads work well too :doh:

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Get a female 'maxi-pad'....peel sticky off, and fasten to your helmet in forehead area. Presto! No more sweating in your eyes! 'Light flow days' are good for lesser days.

I've seen Scott Summers have his Dad duck-tape a monster maxi to his head before a hot GNCC.

The only draw-back.....you have "kitty-cats" on the brain all day long :doh: .

You are kidding right? LOL!

The salt in sweat really burns your eyes? I thought your eyes were salty to begin

with?

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Well, yes, we are "made of salt."

If you have an open cut, salt-water might make it sting; so does sweat. That doesn't necessarily mean the sweat is saltier than the wound.

However, even if your sweat started out at the same salt concentration as blood plasma, when it hits the air, the water part of it starts to evaporate and what is left has a higher salt content than when it started.

http://books.google.com/books?id=_367AAAAIAAJ&pg=PA184&lpg=PA184&dq=sweat+sting+eyes+salt+concentration&source=bl&ots=It8g6OMfe_&sig=4PcLS1IPWGi2L1cXpCnT9cgbLtc&hl=en&ei=1OcMStGMOJHoMKHwrbMG&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=2#PPA184,M1

When you have a permeable membrane with different concentrations of a solution on either side, the fluid will put osmotic pressure on the membrane and fluid will flow either direction to attempt to equalize the concentrations. With regard to salt and the eye, look at this

http://www.theratears.com/what.aspx

http://www.rpbusa.org/rpb/eye_info/dry_eye/

In summary: sweat has salt - more salt than your eye. Putting salt in your eye makes it sting. (One could run a taste test I suppose.)

You can reduce the salt content of your sweat by making sure you are fully hydrated and by eating less salt. (That is not to say there are no problems with being deficient in salt intake.)

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Salt, whether potassium or sodium chloride, isn't what burns your eyes because your tears are made up of a saline solution. Salt would also be the saline part of eyewash lol. So every time you used eye wash your eyes would burn like crazy! It is the urea in sweat that burns your eyes; yes it is the same stuff that is in urine just much smaller quantities. Your body has to get rid of nitrogen somehow. You could put some clear antiperspirant on your forehead before you ride, or just be like me and grow some eyebrows lol.

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Have you tried goggles with "no sweat" foam?
Do a search for the Scott USA No Sweat Beanie.

They work great :doh:

I have the Scott 80s goggles that are getting worn out. I guess I'll invest in a

couple pairs with the No Sweat foam and maybe the beanie.

But it sounds like I'm not hydrated enough and the salt content is higher than

it would if I were more hydrated. Funny because the more I hydrate the more

I seem to cramp up. For a while I was drinking tons of water 3-4 days prior to

my races. I never got burned in the eyes, but come to think of it, I used to

get gnarly leg cramps about 1:45-2 hours into the race. Since I have been hydrating

less, I haven't had any leg cramps at all.

Could that be right? Too much hydration causes could result in cramping?

cuz youre a devil kid and holy water is appearing on your forehead from angels.

Good one.:snore:

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Funny because the more I hydrate the more

I seem to cramp up. For a while I was drinking tons of water 3-4 days prior to

my races. I never got burned in the eyes, but come to think of it, I used to

get gnarly leg cramps about 1:45-2 hours into the race. Since I have been hydrating

less, I haven't had any leg cramps at all.

Could that be right? Too much hydration causes could result in cramping?

Yep, too much water flushing the potassium out of you can cause leg cramps. Try upping the water intake back up and make sure to eat a banana :doh: on practice/race day or make about half of your race day fluid intake a diluted sports drink.

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Yep, too much water flushing the potassium out of you can cause leg cramps. Try upping the water intake back up and make sure to eat a banana :snore: on practice/race day or make about half of your race day fluid intake a diluted sports drink.

:doh:

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