Simple tips for healthy eyes

Your eyes are an important part of your health. There are many things you can do to keep them healthy and make sure you’re seeing your best. Follow these simple steps to keep your eyes healthy during your golden years. Have a complete examination of your eyes with dilated pupils.

You may think that your vision is fine or that your eyes are healthy, but the only way to be safe is to visit your eye doctor for a complete eye exam with dilated pupils. When it comes to common vision problems, some people don’t know they could see better with glasses or contact lenses. In addition, many common eye diseases such as glaucoma, diabetic eye disease and age-related macular degeneration often have no warning signs. The only way to detect these diseases in their early stages is with a dilated eye exam.

During the complete examination of the dilated eyes, your eye doctor will put a few drops in your eyes to dilate, or enlarge, the pupil and allow more light to enter the eye in the same way that an open door allows more light to enter a dark room. This allows the eye doctor to look at the back of the eyes and examine them for any signs of damage or illness. Your eye doctor is the only person who can determine if your eyes are healthy and if you are seeing your best. Know your family history of eye health.

Talk to your family members about your eye health history. It is important to know if someone has been diagnosed with a disease or condition as many are hereditary. This can help you determine if you are at increased risk of developing an eye disease or condition. Eat properly to protect your eyesight.

You’ve heard that carrots are good for your eyes. Following a diet rich in fruits and vegetables, particularly dark leafy greens like spinach, cabbage, and kale, is also important for keeping your eyes healthy.1 Research has also shown that there are eye health benefits to eating fish high in omega-3 fatty acids like salmon.tuna and grouper. Maintain a healthy weight.

Being overweight or obese increases your risk of developing diabetes and other systemic conditions, which can lead to vision loss, such as diabetic eye disease or glaucoma. If you are having trouble maintaining a healthy weight, talk to your doctor. Wear protective eye gear.

Wear protective eye gear when you are playing sports or doing activities around the house. Eye protection equipment includes eyeglasses and goggles, face shields and eye protectors specially designed to provide adequate protection for each activity. Most eye protection lenses are made of polycarbonate which is 10 times stronger than other plastics. Many eye health providers sell protective eye equipment, as do some sports equipment stores. Quit smoking or don’t start.

Smoking is bad for your eyes and also for the rest of your body. Research has linked smoking to an increased risk of developing age-related macular degeneration, cataract, and optic nerve damage. All of these can cause blindness.2,3Go to fashion and wear your sunglasses.

Sunglasses are a great fashion accessory but their most important function is to protect your eyes from the sun’s ultraviolet rays. When buying sunglasses look for ones that block 99 to 100 percent of UV-A and UV-B radiation. Let your eyes rest.

If you spend a lot of time on the computer or looking at one thing, sometimes you forget to blink and your eyes can get tired. Try to employ the 20-20-20 rule: Every 20 minutes, look 20 feet away, for 20 seconds. This can help reduce fatigue in your eyes. Wash your hands and contact lenses properly.

To avoid the risk of infection, always wash your hands thoroughly before putting on or removing your contact lenses. Be sure to disinfect contact lenses as instructed and replace them as appropriate. Protect your eyes in your workplace.

Employers are required to provide a safe work environment. If eye protection equipment is required as part of your job, develop a habit of using the appropriate equipment all the time and encourage your coworkers to do the same.

1. Age-Related Eye Disease Study Research Group. The relationship of dietary carotenoid with vitamin A, E, and C intake with age-related macular degeneration in a case-control study. Archives of Ophthalmology; 2007; 125(9): 12251232.

2. Age-Related Eye Disease Study Research Group. Risk factors associated with age-related nuclear and cortical cataract. Ophthalmology; 2001; 108(8): 14001408.

3. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of the Surgeon General. The Health Consequences of Smoking: A Report of the Surgeon General (Washington, D.C., 2004).Last updated: July 11, 2019


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