Are you protecting your eyesight from vision loss or blindness due to eye disease and conditions? Your eye health is important and there a few simple measures you can take to help prevent vision loss. Taking care of your eyes needs to be a priority just like scheduling yearly physicals, eating healthy and engaging in physical activity.
This month, Barnet Dulaney Perkins Eye Center is participating in Healthy Vision Month to help educate the public about the steps they can take to protect their vision. Here’s how to protect your eyesight in six simple ways:
Get a dilated eye exam
Dr. Sushma Rai, a fellowship trained glaucoma and cataract expert at Barnet Dulaney Perkins, says that healthy vision starts with getting a dilated eye exam. “Getting a dilated eye exam is the only way to catch an eye illness early. Many common eye diseases such as glaucoma, diabetic eye disease and age-related macular degeneration often have no symptoms.”
Visiting an eye care professional for a comprehensive dilated eye exam is the only way to detect these diseases in their early stages.
Live a healthy lifestyle
Living an overall healthy lifestyle is good for your eyes. Steps towards a healthy life include maintaining a healthy weight, eating healthy foods, not smoking and managing chronic conditions.
Know your family history
It is important to know if anyone has been diagnosed with an eye disease, since many are hereditary. Talking to your family members about their eye health history will help to determine if you are at higher risk for developing an eye illness yourself.
Use protective eyewear
About 2,000 U.S. workers have a job-related eye injury that requires medical treatment and every 13 minutes, an ER in the United States treats a sports-related eye injury. Protecting your eyes with the right eyewear can prevent those injuries from happening – that includes safety glasses, safety shields and eye guards that are made of polycarbonate, which is ten times stronger than other plastics.
Sunglasses are not just a fashion statement; their most important job is to protect your eyes from the sun’s ultraviolet (UV) rays. The effects of the sun can cause cataracts, macular degeneration and pterygium, a corneal growth that affects people who spend a lot of time outdoors.
Healthy vision can help keep individuals safe each day and benefit overall health. People with vision problems are more likely than those with good vision to have diabetes, poor hearing, heart problems, high blood pressure, lower back pain and strokes.