Healthy eyes are something that many of us take for granted, that is until the day comes when we notice that we aren’t seeing quite as clearly as we used to. However, with a little effort, our eyes can remain healthier for longer.
Reduced eye health can often happen quite gradually and without any noticeable symptoms, which is why early detection and treatment are extremely important. The most effective way to stay on top of your eye health is to protect your eyes and ensure that you get regular eye checks with a health professional.
Here are some of the best ways you can proactively stay on top of your eye health:
Owning a pair of good sunglasses is one of the most effective ways to protect your eyesight and maintain good eye health. However, when choosing a pair of sunnies, it is important to keep ‘eye protection’ at the forefront of your mind – not just style!
A pair of good quality UV blocking sunglasses are able to block between 99% to 100% of the sun’s harmful UVA and UVB radiation. Sunglasses help protect your eyes from a range of different conditions from macular degeneration to retinal damage. They can also help prevent premature wrinkles and skin cancer of the delicate skin around the eyes.
Reduce Eye Strain
Eye strain occurs when your eyes become tired after prolonged use, such as when looking at a computer screen for long periods, or when doing other kinds of close up work. Symptoms include headaches, dryness on the eye surface and blurred vision. If you are one of the many people who suffer from eye strain, a great tip to follow is the 20-20-20 rule. Simply look at an object 20 feet away (approx. 6m), for 20 seconds, every 20 minutes.
If you find that your eye fatigue is becoming more persistent, it may be an indicator of an eye condition such as presbyopia or dry eye, or it may even be a sign that your glasses need to be checked. If your eye strain continues, consider booking an appointment with your optometrist or doctor to determine the cause of your eye fatigue as well as prescribe the most suitable treatment.
Smoking tobacco has been directly linked to numerous diseases and other adverse health effects. There is an increased risk that smokers will develop cataracts or Age-related Macular Degeneration (AMD). Numerous studies have shown that smokers have a much higher possibility of developing AMD compared to those who never smoked.
Whether you’re working in your garage, conducting a school science experiment, or working on a construction site, it is vital that appropriate eyewear is always worn to protect your eyes.
If you are in an environment where you are exposed to hazards such as a chemical spill, sharp objects, or other possible dangerous materials such as metal shards or wood shavings within the work environment, it is essential that appropriate eyewear is worn at all times.
Family Eye History
Many conditions and diseases of the eye can be hereditary, whether it’s the basics of long or short-sightedness or more serious diseases such as glaucoma. Knowledge of your family’s eye history can be very helpful in detecting certain conditions before they become too serious.
Healthy Balanced Diet
A diet consisting of high antioxidant foods such as fruits and dark green or colourful vegetables has been shown to reduce the risk of common eye conditions such as cataracts. Studies have also shown that omega-3 fatty acids found in some fish may reduce the risks of developing macular degeneration. A healthy and balanced diet can help ensure that your eyes are receiving the correct amount of nutrients that they need to stay healthy.
Avoid Dry Eyes
If your eyes are not producing enough liquid, they will likely become tired, dry, and sore. This can be made worse with prolonged computer use, central heating/air-conditioning, as well as the use of certain medications.
A few ways to relieve dry eyes are to blink often, drink plenty of water, or administer lubricating eye drops which can reduce the discomfort and soothe the irritation. If your eyes seem to be persistently dry, you should get them checked by a professional.
To conclude, prevention is better than cure. Take care of your eye health and always remember to book for an annual comprehensive eye examination.