Save Your Sight with Seven Simple Steps
People in their 20s or 30s are likely more concerned with launching careers and families than with their eye health. But this is the exact time of life to take action to preserve vision. That’s because most vision problems are preventable. Vision loss doesn’t have to be a natural part of getting older. Study after study has shown that exercise and a diet rich in a variety of fruits and vegetables can protect against blinding eye diseases, such as age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and glaucoma. Taking simple steps can also help prevent certain types of eye cancer as well as work- and sports-related eye injuries. Here are seven simple steps for a lifetime of seeing well.
- Wear Sunglasses. Long-term exposure to the sun without proper protection can increase the risk of eye disease, including cataract, macular degeneration, growths on the eye, and a rare form of eye cancer. Wear sunglasses that block 99 to 100 percent of both UVA and UVB radiation.
- Exercise. Regular physical activity can protect you from serious eye diseases, such as age-related macular degeneration and glaucoma.
- Stop Smoking. Smoking increases the risk for eye diseases such as cataract and age-related macular degeneration. Smoking also raises the risk for cardiovascular diseases which can indirectly influence your eye health. Tobacco smoke, including second-hand smoke, also worsens dry eye.
- Protect Your Eyes @ Work & Play. Every year, thousands of people in the United States get a serious work-related eye injury or sports-related eye injury. Wearing protective eyewear can prevent most of these injuries. To make sure you have the right kind of protective eyewear and you’re using it correctly, talk with your eyecare professional.
- Be Aware of Eye Fatigue. If you spend a lot of time at the computer or staring at your phone, you may forget to blink-and that can tire out your eyes. Try using the 20–20–20 rule throughout the day: Every 20 minutes, look away from the screens and focus about 20 feet in front of you for 20 seconds. Eye fatigue won’t damage your vision, but if it persists, it can be a sign something else is wrong.
- Take Proper Care of Contact Lenses. Sleeping, showering and swimming in contact lenses increases your risk for a potentially blinding eye infection. Learn how to properly care for contact lenses.
- Know Your Family History. Certain eye diseases can be inherited. If you have a close relative with macular degeneration, you have a 50 percent chance of developing this condition. A family history of glaucoma increases your glaucoma risk by four to nine times. Talk to family members about their eye conditions.
Please schedule regular eye exams to preserve your eye health & vision. It’s important to take care of your eyes, just like you take care of the rest of your body. Call Ridgewood Eye Associates at 201-857-4999, visit Ridgewood Eye Associates or Facebook.
Ridgewood Eye Associates is a comprehensive eye care practice staffed by NJ ophthalmologist eye doctors and eye specialists located 1 W. Ridgewood Avenue, Suite 101, Paramus, New Jersey 07652, 201-857-4999, an affiliate of Prism Vision Group.