Eye problems relating to frying food

Discussion in 'Professional Chefs' started by anachoreo, Apr 5, 2012.

  1. anachoreo

    anachoreo

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    Hi there,

    I like to know if any of you experienced eye problems related to frying

    My wife, the chef, has very red and irritatd eyes even though frying is not a mayor part of our operation. I am improving the air extraction to alleviate, but I'd like to know if this is a more common problem and whether it could be a serious health hazard in the long term.

    Marnix
     
  2. duckfat

    duckfat

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    I doubt there are any serious or long term side effects from frying. Sounds more like she has spring allergies of some sort. The only real worry I see with frying is with spattering or popping oil that can hit you in the eye but I'd be more worried about that on a sautee station.

    Dave
     
  3. durangojo

    durangojo

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     red and irritated eyes do come with the territory of cooking over a stove, especially if you are heavy on the saute. pans constantly having things added to  them create not only fumes but splatter on your face, in your eyes, your skin, and  especially your lungs.   then there is the grill...your face over hot dry heat.....i use a prescription drop  as a dry eye therapy. 'restasis' is the name...you need to get it from your eye doctor if you have one. they do make all the difference....at the very least buy a long lasting 'dry eye' drop in your supermarket....'systane' is the brand my doctor recommends. i would also check for any propane leaks...either within the system or on the stove/grill...usually the pilots are the culprits and they never seem to be adjusted correctly.....even a tiny iny leak will turn your eyes as red as beets...and gives you a massive headache and quickly zaps your energy ....

    in answer to your question, yes, it all adds up over time, but what doesn't?  probably not chronic though.....guess that's the good news!

    joey

    also, wearing some sort of eye guard while frying might be helpful...safety glasses maybe, or just stand back further.
     
    Last edited: Apr 8, 2012
  4. meezenplaz

    meezenplaz

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    Sometimes the exhaust hood just isnt enough--when I get irritated eyes in the kitchen (often!)

    I clandestinely pop a clip on fan set to low, nearby pointed in the direction of where I'm working.

    Helps a lot. Plus a pocketed bottle of decent eye drops never hurts as well.

    Could be anything from onion vapors to combustion fumes, all pretty common in commercial

    kitchens IME.
     
  5. scubadoo97

    scubadoo97

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    My guess is your wife has a form of dry eye which is exacerbated by the heat and air movement in the kitchen. See an eye doctor for a correct diagnosis and treatment plan
     
  6. anachoreo

    anachoreo

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    Yes my wife has dry eyes due to an eye infection she had as a child. However frying is making it significantly worse. What I was mostly concerned with is whether frying food can cause permanent damage to the eyes. I am relieved to learn that that is unlikely. Thank you for your replies.
     
  7. durangojo

    durangojo

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     i would urge your wife to see an eye doctor as we are not doctor's here...there are drops that will make her eyes feel better. just because there may not be permanent damage, trust me it is very, very uncomfotable. in my sailing years my eyes developed a sort of callous on the whites caused by years of wind.  many years later when my eyes get irritated in the kitchen, it just plain hurts...the drops help hugely.

    joey
     
    Last edited: Apr 8, 2012
  8. chefchef1

    chefchef1

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    Yes it does happen. I just came back from eye doctor.When i woke up this morning I started to see thing double and have a brurry vision especially my left eye. When I cover right eye I can't read anything. Doctor performed usual eye sight exam but non of the glasses made any improvement so she performed different examinations. She found out that my corneas are burnt by heat!!! I'm currently at tempura station at Japanese restaurant and we make tempura in a big pan not the usual flyer. The pan is set very low position around my knee so my face is constantly looking over the hot oil and I sometimes feel dry eyes from it. The Doctor prescribed me antibiotics eye drops and she recommended to use preservative free over the counter eye drops. She said it will heal by itself and recommended to wear glasses while cooking to protect eyes from the heat. 
     
  9. linecook854

    linecook854

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    Agreed about eye problems in certain situations. When I cleaned and boiled out the fryers the "fumes" per-se would irrtiate my eyes, not to mention make my skin break out with pimples! On a saute station where I deglazed pans with wines/liquors constantly my eyes would be irritated sometimes.

    By far the worst in my experience was a poorly functioning exhaust fan over grill station. I worked on a grill station where the hoods barely worked and obviously the heat was terrible, on grill heavy nights I would smoke out the kitchen. I had at least 2 or 3 lung infections working on that station from the fumes not being sucked up by the hoods. I finally had to complain to the owners that they're going to start paying my medical bills for these hospital trips because their bad hoods are making me sick. They basically told me I have no way of proving that the fumes caused my lung infections and to get back to work. On my day off the head chef worked grill and got slammed with steaks and had to take a breather mid-shift because he said he felt like he was having an asthma attack. Finally the hood got fixed!