Do you feel like the colors you see are somehow fading? Or it’s becoming more and more difficult for you to see at night? Maybe every time you look straight at a source of light, you see halos around it? No, you’re not going through a spiritual episode where you’ll eventually witness an apparition from the Virgin Mary. You’re probably just suffering from the onset of glaucoma.
Glaucoma’s one of the most prevalent eye problems in the United States, affecting at least 3 million. It’s right up there with cataract. But while the latter can be remedied via cataract extraction, the former has yet to see a definitive cure. However, treatments for those afflicted can at least curb their symptoms.
Still, the best cure for any eye-related problem is prevention. Here’s how you can keep your eyes healthy.
Regularly visit an eye doctor
You visit the dentist twice a year. There’s no reason why you can’t devote the same level of attention to your eyes. Visit an ophthalmologist and request a comprehensive eye exam. Your doctor should be able to tell if you have any eye condition that needs immediate treatment. If there’s no ophthalmologist in your area, you can consult with an optometrist instead. Either way, you’ll need to be honest with your personal medical history as well as your family’s medical history. These will help your doctor see your case better.
Eye health begins with your diet. If you eat healthily, chances are your eyes will directly benefit. You need certain nutrients and vitamins to keep your eyes in tiptop shape. These include omega-3 fatty acids, zinc, vitamins C and E, and lutein. The sources of these nutrients and vitamins include the following:
- Citrus fruits like oranges
Rest your eyes
Regardless of what generation you are from, chances are you are always in front of a gadget. Whether your gadget of choice is a smartphone or a tablet, there’s no difference. Both screens put your eyes under too much strain, especially after prolonged exposure.
You will notice your eyes drying out. You’ll get headaches, as well as back, neck, and shoulder pain. These symptoms should tell you that it’s time to rest your eyes and look away from your gadget screen.
If you can’t help being in front of a computer screen, at least get yourself anti-glare screen protection. That way, you’re kinder to your eyes.
Prolonged exposure to ultraviolet (UV) rays from the sun will harm your eyes. It might trigger the onset of macular degeneration and cataracts. So every time you go out and the sun’s shining bright, protect your eyes with sunglasses. Ideally, you should have a pair that allows 99 to 100 percent UV rays blockage.
Some contact lenses have built-in UV ray protection too. Still, it won’t hurt to use a pair of sunglasses for added precaution.
Wear protective eyewear when needed
If your workplace has known eye hazards, do not skip the protective goggles or safety glasses. Keep them on at all times. They might be a little cumbersome, but at least your eyes are safe from any airborne material that could harm them.
The same rule applies to when you’re at home doing repair or maintenance. Or when you’re playing a contact sport that’s prone to eye injuries such as ice hockey.
Quit those cancer sticks
Smoking is bad for your health, period. It’s bad for your heart. It’s bad for your lungs. It’s just as bad for your eyes.
Smoking puts you at greater risk of getting cataracts, optic nerve damage, and macular degeneration. If you still smoke, it’s high time that you quit those cancer sticks and regain your health once and for all.
You can consult with your doctor on how to best go about quitting. You might be prescribed nicotine patches.
Your eyes allow you to enjoy life’s simplest pleasures. With them, you get to see the smiles of the people you hold dear. You get to witness all the spectacular things Mother Nature has to offer. You get to see and recognize yourself in the mirror. With these said, we cannot overstate the importance of eye health. So make sure you do everything in your power to keep those eyes of yours working fine. You do not want to wake up one day and realize your vision has diminished because of personal neglect. You see, you’ll definitely regret it.