It’s that time of year again when we all start thinking about making New Year’s resolutions, so why not make “Keeping Your Eyes Happy” one of them!
Follow our simple tips to keep your eyes and vision healthy in 2020.
Have a regular eye examination
Some eye conditions, such as glaucoma have no visible warning signs until your vision is severely damaged. A regular eye examination (even if you think your vision is fine) can help to identify these and other general health issues, such as diabetes, before you’re even aware that they exist.
Check your relatives eye history
Talk to your relatives about their eye health as some eye conditions have genetic links such as glaucoma or squints.
Be cool in the Sun
Protect your eyes when it is sunny or when you’re in high glare areas such as near snow or water. Cumulative UV exposure can increase your risk of developing cataracts and macular degeneration. When choosing sunglasses, make sure they are safe, look out for the CE, UV 400 or British Standard Marks.
Look after your contact lenses properly
Make sure you look after your contact lenses properly. Thoroughly wash and dry your hands before touching your contact lenses or your eyes and only ever clean your contacts using the contact lens solutions recommended.
Protect your eyes
If you work with hazardous or airborne materials at work or home wear safety glasses or protective goggles to protect your eyes from injury.
Be screen smart
Although working at a computer won’t harm your eyes, sitting staring at a screen for long periods of time can cause screen fatigue – sore, itchy or tired eyes, headaches. It is important to take regular breaks and follow the 20,20,20 rule – every 20 minutes, take a 20-second break and focus your eyes on something at least 20 feet away.
Keep fit and healthy
Regular exercise is essential to stay fit and healthy and contributes to maintaining good eye health.
Protecting your eyes starts with the food you eat. Studies have shown that nutrients in omega-3 fatty acids, zinc and vitamins C and E may help to prevent age-related problems, such as macular degeneration and cataracts. Foods containing eye-friendly nutrients include green leafy vegetables, oily fish such as salmon, eggs, wholegrains, chicken and citrus fruits.
If you smoke, then here’s another good reason to kick the habit – smoking is directly linked to blindness. Current smokers are four times more likely to develop macular degeneration (the UK’s leading cause of blindness) compared to past or non-smokers.
Avoid Dry Eyes
Eyes become dry, tired and sore if you are not producing enough tears or you have poor-quality tears. Central heating, air-conditioning and computer use can make it worse. Many adults suffer with dry eyes due to a health condition or medication. Lubricating eye drops can soothe irritation and reduce discomfort. Drink plenty of water and remember to blink often. If your eyes are persistently dry, tell your optometrist.
For any information or if you have any queries about your eye care, feel free to visit the practice – our friendly staff will be happy to answer any questions and advise you on keeping your eyes at the peak of health.