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Easy steps to maintaining eye health

Thursday, August 14, 2014 @ 11:08 PM
Author: admin

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Eye health isn’t something to be taken for granted. Like the rest of your body, you need to take care of your eyes and practice healthy lifestyle choices. There are numerous ailments out there, and as we grow older we’re at more risk of serious problems, like macular degeneration, retinal disorders and other issues that can compromise your vision.

Eye health is often about just taking simple steps. Read on to find easy tips for keeping your eyes as healthy as they can be.

See Your Eye Doctor

Your eye care professional is the only person that can help you with finding and treating eye problems. You need to get a comprehensive eye exam, which includes having your pupils dilated. When doctors dilate your pupils, they use drops to open up the pupil wider than it usually is. They use this technique to look in your eye and observe if there is any damage or diseases. While it’s recommended you get your eyes checked at least once a year, some people may need to see their eye care professional more often. If you have diabetes, a concerning family history of eye problems, or have been diagnosed already with an eye problem, you need to see your eye care professional more often.

If you wear eyeglasses, you need to keep getting examinations because your prescription might be out of date. This could be hard to notice because you’re used to using the eyeglasses you have, so you might not realize your vision is growing more blurry, and this can be dangerous. Also, never feel hesitant to talk with your practitioner if you have questions or concerns about your eye health. That’s why they’re there: to make sure your eyes are as healthy as they can be.

Focus On Your Diet

This might sound redundant, but diet does mean a lot to your health, and your eyes aren’t exempt. Vitamins like A, C and E are essential to keeping your eyes healthy and free of ailments. Luckily, you can find these vitamins in lots of fruits and vegetables, like oranges, kiwis and carrots. But eat leafy greens, too, like spinach, collard greens and kale – these foods have been shown to make a real difference in promoting eye health. Fish that are high in Omega-3 fatty acids are also very important, so try adding more salmon, halibut and tuna into your meals.

Control Your Weight

Like having a good diet, maintaining a healthy body weight prevents serious eye problems. When people gain weight or become obese, they are at great risk of developing disease and other dangerous systemic conditions. This is linked to lots of eye problems that can greatly endanger your sight, like diabetic eye disease and glaucoma.

Quit Smoking

This shouldn’t be surprising. Smoking is awful for your body, and now there are plenty of studies that have shown smoking links to age-related macular degeneration, a serious eye problem that can lead to complete loss of central vision when you get older. That’s not all, though. We now know smoking causes cataracts and even optic nerve damage. So ditch the smokes, no bad habit is worth seriously damaging your eyes.

Know your family history

Many eye problems can be genetically passed on, such as retinal detachment. This is a serious condition that can happen quite suddenly and lead to blindness if not treated in time. There are other problems that could be in your family history, as well, like macular degeneration. If you do find something concerning in your family history, don’t hesitate to speak with your eye care practitioner. Knowing what you may be at risk of is a crucial step to prevention and especially treatment, should you ever run into that eye problem.

Use those sunglasses

Ultraviolet rays from the sun wreak havoc on the eyes. They can cause serious damage both in the short term and the long term. Sunglasses are affordable, comfortable, effective and stylish, so why not use them? Plus, you can even get eyeglasses that have photochromic lenses that automatically shift from an indoor transparency to a shaded tint, protecting your eyes whenever you enter sunlight. This way you don’t need sunglasses, you can just have your eyeglasses play both roles.

Wear Protective Eyewear

Never neglect the mantra of protecting your eyes. Whether you’re playing racquetball, operating a weld or working with copious chemicals or fumes, you need to make sure you have your eyes protected. That’s why so many workplaces enforce requirements for wearing eyewear on the job, but only you can control your decisions. Make the right choice: protect your eyes.

Take care of your contact lenses

Infections can happen if you don’t keep your contact lenses clean. Always wash your hands and thoroughly disinfect your lenses before you use them.

Don’t strain too much

There’s nothing dangerous about reading in the dark, staring at a computer or sitting close to the television – but these things can lead to eye strain. When you focus on something, you’re less likely to blink, so your eyes can get dry and irritated, too. The best way to deal with this is to follow “the 20 rule”: Every 20 minutes, take a little 20 second break, looking at other objects in the room. This reduces eye strain, letting your eyes relax and refocus.

So there’s lots of ways to take care of your eyes. These are all easy and effective, so make an effort. Your eyes are your windows to the world – don’t neglect them.

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