Are you doing everything you can to take care of your vision?
Vision care is something we often don’t think about until we need it. However, as with any type of medicine, preventative care is far better than trying to fix problems after they start.
With the right vision care tips, you can keep your eyes healthy and catch small problems before they become big ones.
Ready to see clearly into 2018 and beyond? Follow these 8 top vision care tips.
Sunglasses don’t just make you look cool – they’re also an important part of vision care.
Make sure to choose sunglasses with UV protection for your eyes, though. Wearing sunglasses without UV protection can actually damage your eyes more. Your pupils will dilate when you have sunglasses on, and if there’s no UV protection, they’ll allow even more sun damage in than usual.
However, if your sunglasses do protect against UV rays, this is an added layer of protection that can keep your vision healthy in the long term. Sunglasses can help prevent cataracts from developing (direct sunlight makes cataracts appear faster).
They can protect the skin around your eyes from developing wrinkles and even skin cancer. Sunglasses also help prevent damage to your retinas caused by the sun.
Make sure the sunglasses you choose block 100 percent of both UVA and UVB rays, and you can be confident that you have both style and safety when you wear them.
You probably already know about some of the negative health consequences of smoking. However, did you know that cigarettes can also damage the health of your eyes?
Smoking cigarettes can advance the onset of age-related macular degeneration (AMD). People who smoke currently, or have smoked in the past, are more likely to develop AMD than those that haven’t.
Cigarettes can also increase your risk of cataracts. If the other risks associated with smoking aren’t enough to convince you to quit, you can add eye health to the list.
Your diet affects every part of your body, including your eyes. A few dietary changes can be an important part of your day-to-day vision care.
If you’re deficient in some essential vitamins and nutrients, it can affect the health of your retinas.
Have you ever heard the idea that carrots are good for your eyes? It’s actually more complicated than that, but it’s true that many vegetables, including carrots, contain nutrients that your eyes need to thrive.
Carrots contain beta-carotene, which your body changes into Vitamin A. This vitamin is essential for the proper formation of cells in your eyes. In fact, people who don’t get enough Vitamin A in their diets are more prone to night blindness.
With a diet rich in vegetables (choose brightly colored and leafy green ones for best results), your eyes will stay healthy through 2018 and into the future. Consuming nutrients in your diet can also prevent eye disease and degeneration later on.
Getting your eyes checked regularly by a professional is one of the most important things you can do for their health.
No matter how many at-home eye care tips you follow, there is no replacement for what a professional eye doctor can do. An ophthalmologist knows how to see potential problems you may not even be aware of, and can give you the best vision care advice around.
Don’t want until you start having problems to schedule an exam. Instead, stay up to date with an annual checkup. Find an eye doctor that you like near you and stick with them, so they can get to know you and your unique vision care needs.
In addition to regular checkups for contact and glasses prescriptions, you’ll want to at least start getting regular baseline eye disease screenings at age 40. This is when many diseases first start to show up.
Many eye problems can be slowed or fixed if they’re caught early. Don’t delay on scheduling an exam for your eye health – it’s better to be safe than sorry.
Certain activities require eye protection to be safe. Do you have the right equipment to protect your eyes?
If you play certain sports, like hockey, your eyes need to be kept safe from injury. When you’re playing sports, make sure the eye protection you choose is designed to meet that sport’s safety requirements.
Regular household activities such as using cleaning chemicals, repairing your home, and even gardening can require eye protection.
Anytime you’re around strong chemicals, eye protection such as goggles should be worn to protect you from the fumes. And when debris can get in your eyes, such as when you’re sawing wood or working in the garden, eye protection is also a good idea.
Do you know your family’s eye health history?
Knowing which diseases and eye issues run in the family can make a big difference in your vision care plans. Make sure you know which diseases you’re at a higher risk for. Glaucoma, cataracts, and macular degeneration are all examples of eye diseases that can run in the family.
If you wear contact lenses, there is a right and a wrong way to use them.
If you use them the wrong way, you could do temporary or permanent damage to your eyes. Make sure to always follow your eye doctor’s instructions when it comes to wearing and caring for contact lenses.
For example, never sleep in contacts that aren’t designed to be worn overnight (and even if they are, you shouldn’t sleep in them every night). If you break these rules, your eyes will pay in the long run.
If you put in long hours at the computer, you’ll be prone to eye fatigue and strain. Remember to take regular breaks to let your eyes recover, and talk to your eye doctor if eye fatigue persists even when you’re away from the computer.
With these tips, you’ll put yourself on the path to successful vision care this year and in the future.
However, eye care isn’t something you have to tackle alone. Contact us today to find out how our doctors can help you care for your eyes.