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Your Eyes Are Worth Protecting

December 25th, 2023

It’s likely that your eyesight will change over time. There’s no way around it.

But take comfort in the fact that you’re in good company. This hard reality applies to virtually everyone.

Fortunately, near and farsightedness are easy to address with glasses or contact lenses.

But what about more serious eye conditions that can put your vision at risk? Conditions like macular degeneration, cataracts, glaucoma, and diabetic retinopathy.

The good news is you can do a lot to prevent these more serious conditions…or at the very least, limit your risk.

Regular Eye Exams

Perhaps you’ve worn glasses since you were a kid. Or maybe you’ve been lucky enough to not need glasses or contacts to this point.

Either way, an annual eye exam is recommended for everyone. Apart from monitoring the quality of your vision, these regular check-ups are important for identifying more serious issues early. In fact, your optometrist can detect conditions like glaucoma, cataracts, and diabetic retinopathy long before symptoms are noticeable.

And oftentimes early detection can mean the difference between vision that is preserved versus vision that is irreversibly damaged.

A Nutrient-Rich Diet

Like other parts of your body, your eyes have specific nutritional needs.

  • Vitamin A helps to prevent dry eye and helps retinal cells to regenerate.
  • Beta carotene is used by your body to produce vitamin A (see above)
  • Vitamin C protects your eyes from UV rays and lowers your risk for developing cataracts.
  • Vitamin E protects your retinas from free radicals that can increase the risk for developing eye disease.
  • Zinc helps to protect against macular degeneration.
  • Omega-3 fatty acids help to prevent macular degeneration and dry eye disease.
  • Lutein and zeaxanthin are powerful antioxidants that protect against macular degeneration and retinal damage.

Protective Eyewear

Your eyes need two kinds of protection in the form of eyewear.

First, it’s important to shield your eyes from harmful UV rays that can cause cataracts and macular degeneration. Look for sunglasses that block both UVA and UVB rays.

Second, wear protective eyewear to shield your eyes from flying objects and debris when playing sports or doing home improvement projects.

Manage Screen Time

Prolonged exposure to smart phones, computers, and TVs is difficult to avoid these days. However, excessive screen time can contribute to eye strain.

Try using the 20-20-20 rule. Every 20 minutes take at least a 20 second break to look at something 20 feet away. This simple practice helps to reduce eye strain that can be caused by prolonged screen use.

Good Vision for Life

Remember…prevention and early detection are key when it comes to eye health. Even serious eye conditions like glaucoma and cataracts are treatable if caught early. See your optometrist regularly and make sure you’re practicing good eyecare habits.

If you have questions about healthy aging, call us at 800-859-7511 or use our contact form to schedule your free 30-minute consultation.

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