Your eye health and vision should never be taken for granted. After all, our eyes allow us to see the things that are most important to us. But just as those things change over time, so too does our vision.
Here are 5 ways you can maintain your vision and protect your sight this year and for a lifetime:
1. Eating Eye-Healthy Foods
Incorporating eye-healthy foods into your diet is one of the easiest things you can do to keep your eyes healthy and vision sharp. Vibrant and colorful fruits and veggies including dark leafy greens such as spinach and kale are packed with antioxidants that help protect your eyes from harmful UV rays. Berries are also rich in antioxidants and can decrease the risk of macular degeneration and cataracts. In addition, the omega-3 fatty acids found in salmon and other fatty fish may also reduce the risk of macular degeneration. Vitamin A found in orange veggies including sweet potato, peppers, squash and carrots are also good for your eyes.
2. Routine Eye Exams
Routine eye exams are so important in maintaining the health of your eyes. Even if you don’t notice any changes in your visual clarity, we still recommend that patients receive a comprehensive eye exam at least once every two years. Effective, routine exams are important for both visual clarity as well as early detection of a variety of eye diseases like glaucoma and cataracts. Eyes really are the window to the soul because they can reveal signs and symptoms of conditions such as high blood pressure and diabetes. If left untreated, these conditions can lead to damaging eye problems. Your eye care professional will be able to determine the risk of any potential eye problems.
3. Quit Smoking
If you’re a smoker, then you know that quitting is easier said than done. However, if it happens to be your New Year’s resolution, then it may be helpful to know that your eyes will thank you for quitting. Smoking increases your risk of developing age-related macular degeneration and cataracts. It may be a hard resolution to tackle, but we can assure you that it will be one of the best investments you’ll make in your overall health and wellness.
4. Wear Protective Eyewear
Protective eyewear includes sunglasses, and swim and safety goggles. Sunglasses aren’t just for the summer months. The sun reflects off the snow in the wintertime, which can be just as bright and damaging to the surface of the eye. It’s important that your sunglasses block both UVA and UVB rays as excessive exposure to harmful UV rays can increase your risk of developing cataracts and macular degeneration. Sunglasses will also help to protect your eyes from debris flying around outside.
If you’re a contact lens wearer, protective eyewear also includes goggles for swimming. Contact lenses should never come in contact with water because it increases the risk of infection.
Additionally, safety goggles are important whether you’re playing sports or working on home repairs.
5. Keep Your Eyes Clean
If you’re a contact lens wearer, keeping your eyes and contacts clean is especially important in reducing the risk of a bacterial infection. You should always wash your hands before handling your contacts and should wash your contact lens case frequently and replace with fresh solution. In fact, Americans don’t wear contact lenses properly and it leads to 1 million eye infections a year. If you’re not the best at keeping up with the standard of hygiene required for contact lens wear, then you may want to consider LASIK. With LASIK, you’ll never have to worry about the hassle of contact lenses again! Your New Year will be full of freedom!
Associates in Ophthalmology
Associates in Ophthalmology has been helping our patients achieve clear vision for over 20 years. We take pride in offering our patients a wide range of corrective options, ensuring they get the best visual result possible. In addition, we also provide a number of cosmetic services to refresh your appearance, so you can look as good as you feel!
If you’re interested in any of our services mentioned above, please don’t hesitate to contact us!