Top tips on how to look after your eyes
Regular eye examinations– so much about your general health and eye health can be detected from an eye examination, such as diabetes, high blood pressure. In many cases early detection of eye conditions can prevent irreversible sight loss. If treatment is required the earlier treatment is started the better the visual outcome.
Diet & Nutrition- ‘you are what you eat’
Good nutrition is very important for both your general and eye health. Good nutrition helps our body to grow, repair wear and tear, protect against infection, and to function properly. Eat a diet rich in fruit and vegetables rich in antioxidant vitamins A, C, and E and minerals such as Zinc to keep your eyes fit and healthy. This is particularly important to help prevent age related macular degeneration and cataracts. Below is a list of vegetables and fruit that contain theses vitamins. They can also be found in nuts, seeds, dairy products and eggs.
- dried apricots
- raw carrots
- green leafy vegetables including kale and spinach
- green peas
- green beans
- brussels sprouts.
So eat a good, balanced diet with lots of fresh fruit and vegetables
Consider changing your diet or taking vitamin supplements
Hydration – is important so drink plenty of water
Stop smoking– as the toxic substances produced by smoking can increase the risk significantly of macular degeneration, if you are diabetic it can increase the risk of sight threatening diabetic retinopathy and can cause cataracts by increasing free radicals that accelerate ageing and alter the body’s ability to absorb or extract necessary vitamins and minerals from food.
EXERCISE – by keeping fit and exercising regularly good circulation is promoted throughout your body including the eye. Being overweight not only increases your chance of developing systemic medical conditions, but it also can increase your chance ,if diabetic, of developing sight threatening diabetic retinopathy.
Regular breaks when on a computer helps to relax the eyes and prevent eyestrain and headaches. Try to rest your eyes by looking away from the screen, into the far distance and if working in an air conditioned office try to take some fresh air when possible.
Turn the lights on and turn them up-Good lighting is important for your vision. Make sure the general lighting in your room is adequate for what you are doing but try to avoid any glare on the screen itself as this can be uncomfortable.
Protect your eyes from the sun’s harmful UV rays and from hazardous tasks at work or when playing dangerous sports-wear sunglasses with a CE mark, on sunny days and for prolong periods outside, especially when carrying out any sports such as snowboarding and water sports. The UV exposure is much higher where there are more reflective surfaces, for example near water, or snow, so protecting your eyes while at the beach, fishing, boating or on holiday is probably a good idea.
High exposure to UVA and UVB are risk factors for a number of eye diseases, including the development of cataracts.
- Always ensure you wear your safety spectacles prescribed for you at work.
- Wear safety goggles for any hazardous task at home i.e sawing, sanding, drilling, hammering, gardening or any activity that causes dust or air particles
- Wear a welding mask when welding
- Handle all chemicals with care and follow the manufacturer’s instructions
- Consider wearing goggles when playing racquet sports such as squash and tennis, especially if you only have useful vision in one eye.
- Make sure you wear your optical correction when playing any type of sport and consider wearing contact lenses for sports rather than spectacles to provide better all round vision.
Family History- be aware of any inherited eye diseases that your family may have and make your optometrist aware of them
At CATS, that’s why during every eye examination, we take time to examine our patients eyes and discuss possible problems to ensure we pick up any eye health defect as soon as possible and we are always happy to help and advise you on how to look after your eyes; to ensure our patients maintain healthy eyes.