PROTECTING YOUR PRECIOUS SIGHT: LITTLE STEPS YOU CAN TAKE THAT CAN MAKE A BIG DIFFERENCEJune 30, 2016
Our eyesight is often something we take for granted, not really appreciating it until we find ourselves losing vision or being unable to focus on something. However, there are many ways in which we can protect our eyes to retain healthy eyesight. For example, did you know that even the foods you eat can help to protect your vision?
We’ve all heard that carrots are good for our eyes but it’s actually a wide variety of vegetables that are beneficial to eye health. Diets that are rich in vegetables and fruits, and those with dark green leafs in particular (e.g. kale and spinach), are important for keeping our eyes healthy. Researchers have also discovered that people with high amounts of omega-3 fatty acids (tuna, salmon and halibut are great sources of this) and vitamins C and E are less likely to develop Age-related Macular Degeneration (AMD).
With many eye diseases and visual problems being hereditary, it’s important you know the ins and outs of your family’s eye health history. Ask family members if they’ve ever suffered from anything and be wary of any symptoms that are indicative of this visual problem as you may be at a higher risk of developing this.
Eye diseases that are age-related, e.g. glaucoma and cataracts, are predicted to increase to 43 million by 2020, which is a huge increase from the 28 million cases today.
The development of AMD, optic nerve damage and cataracts are all directly linked to smoking and can all be a cause of blindness. Research has indicated that smokers are at a higher risk of developing these types of diseases compared to those who don’t smoke.
As with anything, early detection helps to provide better cures, which is why it’s essential that you attend regular eye examinations with your optician. It doesn’t matter whether you’re considering laser eye surgery for short-sightedness using companies like lasereyesurgeryhub.co.uk, or you feel as though eyes are fine, regular vision checks are imperative for identifying any problems.
With a lot of common vision problems, it’s not until patients visit an ophthalmologist that they realise they can see better with glasses. Equally, severer diseases such as AMD and glaucoma may not provide you with early warning signs but your optician could help to identify these.
Our eyes need protecting from the harmful rays of the sun as it is these that can cause premature wrinkles, retinal damage, skin cancer and the development of cataracts. When purchasing sunglasses always make sure they offer 100% UVA and UVB protection.
If you’re carrying out any activities at home or in a sporting event, it’s important to protect your eyes, particularly if there are any risks of injury from what you’re doing. In the U.S. there are approximately 2.5 million eye injuries a year and many could be prevented with the use of eye protection.
By understanding the dos and don’ts of eye health and by organising regular trips to your optician, you’ll help to keep your eyes healthier for longer.
Matthew Lynch is training to become an optician. He doesn't think protecting eyesight is taken seriously enough and hopes his articles will help the general public become more knowledgeable on keeping their eyes healthy.
Posted by verna luga
She earned her Masters in Applied Social Research at Ateneo de Davao University. She's a hard-core pluralist, an eternal optimist, a 40ish realist and a frustrated florist. She’s a mother, a teacher, a dreamer and who knows one day a potter.
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