We have heard all the New Year’s resolutions; quit smoking, lose weight, and stop cursing. One we don’t hear often enough is a resolution to take better care of your eyes.
Here are a few tips for healthy eyes:
- Schedule your annual eye exam. In addition to making sure your eyeglass or contact lens prescription is right for you (or if you need one), a yearly eye exam also offers your ophthalmologist an opportunity to detect the early stages of eye diseases.
- Wear UV-protective sunglasses year-round. UV damage from the sun accumulates over time. It can cause you to get cataracts at an early age and increase the risk of rare eye cancers.
- Eat more eye-healthy foods. From Omega-3 fatty acids in cold-water fish such as salmon and tuna to fresh fruits and dark green vegetables.
- Take your contacts out and give your eyes a break. Contact lenses are a great alternative to glasses, but they can sometimes be hard on your eyes if you leave them in for too long.
- Look away from the digital screen. When you’re focusing on a screen, it’s hard to remember to blink. As a result, your eyes may dry out and the muscles in your eyes can become exhausted from focusing. This causes eye strain.
- Monitor your blood pressure, cholesterol, and glucose levels. Your heart health directly affects the blood vessels in your eyes. High blood pressure and high cholesterol levels increase the risk of eye disease,
- Quit smoking. Did you know smoking puts you at more risk for developing eye diseases like age-related macular degeneration and cataracts?
Dr. Barr also adds, “In addition to practicing preventative care, keep an eye (sorry about that one) changes in your vision. Loss of night vision, double vision, blurriness, and eye pain require immediate attention.