As we age, so do our eyes.
Therefore, our risk for vision problems that can impact our daily lifestyle such as glaucoma, cataracts, and age-related macular degeneration (AMD) increases.
Aging is a natural part of life and you can’t prevent it, but you can minimize your risk of age-related eye damage by proactively taking great care of your eye health.
Below are 10 tips to maintain health eye health as you age:
1. Eat Right
The National Institute of Aging recommends focusing on a well-balanced diet of nutritious foods that support eye health such as fish, eggs, almonds, yogurt, carrots, kale, and oranges.
Make an effort to eat a variety of whole, unprocessed foods on a daily basis!
2. Don’t smoke
Everyone knows that smoking is extremely toxic and can have detrimental effects on our heart and lungs. What’s less known and discussed are the harmful effects smoking can have on our vision. For one, smoking has been directly linked to an increased risk in developing two of the leading causes of vision loss, cataracts and macular degeneration. Smoking can also lead to high blood pressure and diabetes, which are other major risk factors for glaucoma and other vision problems.
3. Wear Sunglasses
The sun’s ultraviolet (UV) rays can cause irreversible damage to aging eyes the same way they cause damage to our skin. Just as you wear sunscreen to protect your skin when you are out in the sun, it’s equally important that you wear sunglasses that block ultraviolet (UV) radiation from harming your eyes. Lenses of any color will do just as long as they have UV filters!
4. Have The Right Lighting.
The older we get, the more our eyesight weakens. Therefore, we start to require superior lighting to support us in seeing details clearer increasing our need for magnification.
The right lighting is more than just increasing your ability to read and enjoy the hobbies you love, but also important for your general safety when it comes to maneuvering around your home with better visibility.
Unknown to most, the hazardous blue light present in today’s fluorescent and LED lights can aggravate the progression of macular degeneration and may cause blindness. Understanding the risk involved, Dr. Lite has worked with a group of medical experts to remove all the hazardous blue light and retain only the beneficial ones. Thus, they are the first to design a premier line of lamps offering the most balanced spectrum of light to reduce the risk of cataracts, early macular degeneration, vision loss, and insomnia.
5. Manage Your Diabetes
If you have diabetes, which can lead to blindness, it’s important to control it. Monitoring your blood sugar levels, maintaining the proper diet and managing your stress levels are key ways to manage your diabetes for life. Be sure to consult your doctor and have your health care team curate a care plan that works for you.
6. Take Breaks.
Nowadays, most of us have a job that requires us to spend the entire day staring at a computer screen. This can put a major strain on our eyes and cause a variety of problems that fall under Computer Vision Syndrome.
When focused on a computer, reduce eye strain by following the 20 by 20 rule: taking breaks from staring at your screen every 20 minutes for at least 20 seconds. Using a glare and flicker free light such as the Dr. Lite Halo Task Lamp could also help reduce your eye strain and fatigue by at least 50%.
7. Keep Up With Eye Exams.
Did you know that most people have already lost part of their vision before even realizing it and by that point, the process is irreversible? We never hesitate to get a check-up with our primary doctor and we wouldn’t dare miss our teeth cleanings with our dentist, so why do we put off our eye health until we start seeing serious problems with our vision? Regular eye exams are so important and allow our doctors to catch problems before they can develop into something more serious. Starting at age 40, annual eye exams become even more important to monitor early signs up glaucoma and retinal damage, even if you’re a healthy adult with no previous vision problems.
8. Drink Water.
At this point, there is really nothing that staying hydrated doesn’t benefit when it comes to our bodies! When it comes to eyes specifically, we know that without proper hydration, your eyes lack the fluids they need to clear out debris with tears, to blink comfortably, and to see without straining. Following the 8×8 rule (drinking eight 8 ounce glasses per day) will keep your organs happy and healthy, with eyes being the most important sensory organ in the human body!
9. Get sleep!
Did you know that being overtired can significantly increase eye strain? Sleep-deprived eyes are unhealthy eyes. Over time, sleep deprivation can even lead to popped blood vessels and dry eyes. If you get enough sleep, your eyes will be refreshed and work to their full potential along with the rest of your body.
10. Exercise Your Eyes.
We exercise our body to build strong muscles, but did you know you can practice eye exercises that strengthen your eye muscles? One example of an eye exercise is the ‘Focus Shift.’ To do this exercise, you just change the focus of both of your eyes by looking at an object that is far-away for 6 seconds until it becomes clear, and then you shift your gaze to an object that is close for 6 seconds until it becomes clear. Do this over and over until your eyes get tired and then take a break until you feel comfortable starting again. There are so many physical eye exercises like this that we can practice from anywhere to keep our aging eyes strong!