Good health is an important part of good vision. The healthier you are, the better chance you have of avoiding risks to your eyes.
Michael V. Landy, OD, says “getting routine eye exams is crucial for detecting vision problems early. Many diseases are capable of permanent vision loss and blindness but can be prevented when detected early on. The best examples of this are glaucoma and diabetic eye disease. The American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO) and the American Optometric Association (AOA) both recommend routine eye care to monitor for eye diseases. If you haven’t been checked out in the past twelve months, now is a good time to call for an appointment.”
In addition to regular eye exams, take the following steps to lower your risk of eye disease and vision loss:
Avoid Smoking – Quitting smoking can have many good effects on your health. Avoiding smoking can also protect the health of your eyes. By quitting smoking, you can help to possibly reduce your risk of developing several different types of eye diseases.
Quitting smoking may reduce your risk of developing: age-related macular degeneration, cataracts, and glaucoma. Quitting smoking will also reduce your risk of developing diabetic retinopathy if you are diabetic.
Eat Healthy Foods– Lifelong good nutrition may lower your risk of some eye diseases. By eating a healthy, balanced diet, you will have a better chance of staying healthy and keeping your eyes healthy. A lifetime diet rich in certain dark green vegetables, such as spinach and kale, may reduce your risk of getting AMD.
By eating healthy foods, you will lower your risk of developing other diseases, such as diabetes, which can lead to diabetic eye disease. Diabetes is also a risk factor for developing glaucoma.
Stay Active – Staying active is part of a healthy lifestyle that can improve your overall health. Exercising regularly can reduce your risk of developing problems that can lead to eye disease. Talk to your doctor before starting an exercise program.
Control Your Blood Pressure – Controlling your blood pressure is not just a good idea for your heart. It is also a good idea for protecting your eyesight. High blood pressure can increase your risk for glaucoma. It may also increase your risk for diabetic retinopathy if you have diabetes.
Protect Your Eyes from the Sun – You already know that you need to wear sunscreen to protect your skin from ultraviolet (UV) rays when you are outdoors. But do you know that you also need to wear protective sunglasses to protect your eyes from those same UV rays? The sun releases energy (radiation) in many forms. The sunlight we see is one form. The heat we feel from the sun is another. Ultraviolet (UV) rays, a third type, are also invisible to the eye. UV rays cause sunburn. They can also damage your eyes and hurt your vision.
For more information contact your eye care professional.