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A Comprehensive Guide on How to Take Care of Your Eyes

Do you take your eyes for granted?

It’s understandable if you do. In fact, most of us don’t appreciate our eyes like we probably should.

The fact is, we rely on our vision in almost everything we do, and yet, we rarely give them a moment’s thought. What’s more, when we take care of our health, our eyes don’t normally come to mind, right?

Let’s change that, shall we? Keep reading to discover helpful tips on how to take care of your eyes.

1. Get an Eye Exam 

Perhaps the single best thing you can do for your eyes it to get a dilated eye exam. And while that sounds complicated, the truth is it’s quick and painless.

Many eye diseases do not have any associated symptoms. Even if your eyes feel great, you could have issues and not even know it. A dilated eye exam can discover many eye diseases and other health conditions in the early stages when they are easiest to treat. 

Some of these diseases and conditions include:

  • Eye tumors
  • Macular degeneration
  • Retinal detachment
  • Vasculitis
  • Glaucoma
  • Diabetes
  • High blood press
  • Infectious diseases

2. Review Your Risk for Eye Disease

The older we get the more likely we are to get eye diseases. Other factors increase the risk of eye diseases such as a family history of eye disease or carrying too much bodyweight. Some ethnic groups, particularly African American, Hispanic, or Native American, are statistically more susceptible to eye disease as well.

Diabetes, high blood pressure and other preexisting health conditions can increase the risk of many eye diseases. People with diabetes, for instance, are commonly diagnosed with diabetic retinopathy, a disease that can lead to vision loss and even blindness.

Consult with your family members to learn more about your family’s eye health history. This knowledge can be very important as many eye diseases, such as glaucoma and macular degeneration are hereditary.

If you find that eye diseases run in your family, or if you feel you are at risk for any reason, talk with your eye doctor. You may be able to take steps to reduce your risk. 

3. Improve Your Overall Health

Don’t underestimate the importance of your overall health to keeping your eyes healthy.

The relationship between the former and the latter is strong. Keeping healthy habits can reduce your risk of diabetes and other conditions that can lead to vision problems. Conversely, a person with diabetes or high blood pressure is at a considerably higher risk for eye diseases.

Here are four best practices for overall health that can limit your risk of eye disease.

Eat a balanced diet: Combat age-related eye conditions by loading your plate with omega-3 fatty acids, lutein, zinc, and vitamins C and E. These nutrients can be found in green leafy vegetables, salmon, tuna, nonmeat protein sources (beans, nuts, eggs), oranges and other citrus fruits.

Get moving: Staying active helps you lower your chances of developing health conditions like diabetes, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol. These conditions can lead to eye issues and vision problems. 

Sleep well: Solid sleep pays off in more ways than one. You look better, you’re more efficient at work, and the extra rest supports your eye health.

Quit smoking: Smoking generates high levels of oxidative stress on your eyes. Experts generally agree that smoking raises the likelihood of acquiring health conditions related to your eyes.

4. Protect Your Eyes

Protecting your eyes is simple and easy when you follow these tips to keep your eyes out of harm’s way.

Wear sunglasses: Exposing your eyes to ultraviolet (UV) rays too often can increase your odds of getting cataracts and macular degeneration. Wear sunglasses that block 99% to 100% of UVA and UVB rays. Protect the sides of your eyes by getting wraparound lenses. Consider polarized lenses to reduce glare while you are driving

Take caution with your devices: Starting at your computer for long periods of time can make your eyes tired. Many experts advise resting your eyes every 20 minutes or looking at something 20 feet away for at least 20 seconds.

Use safety glasses: Home repairs, yard work, sports, and other activities could put your eyes at risk of being physically damaged. Purchase safety glasses and goggles at sporting goods stores or your eye care provider to protect your eyes during these types of activities.

Exercise clean habits with contacts: Wash your hands before handling your contact lenses. It’s also a good idea to disinfect your contact lenses regularly and replace them as necessary.

5. Regularly Visit Your Eye Doctor

A regular visit to your ophthalmologist or optometrist can help you stay on top of your eye health. When you visit your eye doctor, you may talk about your family’s medical history and past personal vision issues.

You can undergo vision tests to determine if you have astigmatism, which is your cornea is curved, blurring your vision. You may undergo tests to spot age-related changes in your vision. The doctor may initiate tests to determine how well your eyes work together.

There’s a myriad of tests you may partake in, such as tests to gauge eye pressure, optic nerve health, glaucoma checks, and microscopic inspections of your eyes. Your doctor may even recommend you for laser eye surgery, although you may want to investigate the cost for Lasik ahead of time.

Final Thoughts on How to Take Care of Your Eyes

If you haven’t given much thought to the health of your eyes, now is the time. Hopefully, these tips on how to take care of your eyes have demonstrated just how easy it is to keep your eyes healthy so you can use them without disturbance for years to come.

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