How To Maintain Healthy Vision As You Age

Our vision is one of the most lively senses we have, affecting our entire perception of the world around us.  Naturally, like all of our organs, our eyes change and deteriorate as we age.  So what are the best things we can do to maintain healthy vision as we age?

Wear UV Blocking Sunglasses 

Most of us spend a significant amount of time in the great outdoors throughout our lives.  Whether it is in the winter or the summer, protecting our eyes from the sun’s harmful UV rays is very important.  Sun damage can happen quickly (your eyes getting a sun burn, for example) or can develop more slowly over time.  Sun damage can be painful and irritating on your eyes and can be very difficult to deal with.  Wearing UV blocking sunglasses will help protect you from the sun’s harmful rays.

Eat Healthy Foods

The vitamins and nutrients found in fruits, vegetables, and proteins provide your eyes with the protection they need to stay healthy.  Vitamins A and C are especially important as they help to keep your retina healthy and reduce the risk of night blindness, cataracts, macular degeneration, and glaucoma.  Proteins rich in omega-3 fatty acids like those found in seafood help to protect your eyes against the development of dry eyes.  Eating a variety of healthy foods will provide your eyes with the nutrients to help them stay functioning at their best.

Get Good Sleep

Your eyes work hard during the waking hours.  They need sleep to replenish themselves and usually need at least 5 hours of sleep to be fully replenished.  If you are not letting your eyes get the rest they need, you are at risk for developing dry eye, twitchy eyes, and eye strain.

Avoid Harmful Habits and Situations

Avoiding harmful habits, like smoking, can significantly reduce your risk of developing debilitating eye disorders.  People who smoke are three times more likely to develop age-related macular degeneration and are also likely to develop it 10 years sooner than those who don’t smoke.  The risk of developing cataracts is doubled among those who smoke. Overall, it is much better for your eyes to avoid harmful habits in the first place.

It is also important to protect your eyes in everyday harmful situations, for example,  while doing yard work or working in construction areas.  Wearing safety goggles or sunglasses can help to prevent injury to your eyes that could otherwise damage your vision permanently. It is best to play it safe.

Follow the 20-20-20 Rule

Let’s face it, electronic devices have become part of our everyday lives and we spend a large amount of time looking at them.  That is not likely to change any time in our near future, so we need to make sure we are taking the necessary precautions to combat that troubles they can cause for our eyes, such as eye strain.  We have a rule of thumb for device use and our eyes; it’s the 20-20-20 rule:  For every twenty minutes you spend looking at a device, look away at something 20 feet away for 20 seconds.  This gives your eyes a little break and allows them to refocus.

Get Eye Exams Annually

We cannot stress enough the importance of your annual eye exams.  Not only does the prescription in your eyes change often, but regular exams help to watch for and prevent eye  diseases and harmful eye conditions. Preventative care is best.  You should schedule an eye exam every year.  If you haven’t yet this year, give us a call and let us help you get one scheduled.  435-359-2020.  We want you seeing your best throughout your entire lifetime.

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