The eye is a very delicate and fragile part of the body. According to one study on distance vision, about 188.5 million individuals worldwide were found to experience mild vision impairment, 217 million individuals experience moderate and severe impairment, and 36 million are blind. In addition, about 826 million individuals have near vision impairment. All in all, about 1.3 billion people are living with one of these impairments.
While many people are aware that the eyes are an integral part of the body system, most of them do not pay close attention to taking care of their eyes and are, in essence, taking them for granted. As the saying goes, “You don’t know what you have until it’s gone.” We have therefore decided to provide you with information on how best to take care of your eyesight:
1. Eat healthy
Eating a healthy diet is integral to keeping the eyes healthy. Nutrients like lutein, vitamins E and C, omega-3 fatty acids, and zinc may help prevent eye-related problems like cataracts and macular degeneration. These nutrients can be found in vegetables like collards, kale, spinach, fish like tuna, salmon, and halibut, as well as in beans, nuts, eggs, oranges, pork, and oysters.
Besides eating meals rich in nutrients, it is equally important to eat a well-balanced diet. Obesity can cause diabetes and other medical conditions, leading to blindness or glaucoma. Obesity is also regarded as the chief cause of blindness across the globe, which should raise a red flag to watch your weight. Visit your doctor to get help with drafting a healthy eating plan.
2. Know your family’s medical history
Eye issues are usually hereditary, so it is important to collect a family history on any diseases that may affect eye health and report them to your eye doctor. This will help your doctor determine your chances of any future eye conditions and develop an action plan for future eye exams.
3. Avoid smoking
Smoking, in general, is harmful to your overall health. Regarding your eyes, it can cause macular degeneration, destroy the optic nerve, and cause cataracts — all of which can lead to vision loss. Quitting smoking if you already smoke — or better yet, not even starting — will benefit your overall health and wellness.
4. Wear sunglasses
Sunglasses are more than just fashion accessories; they are vital in protecting the eyes from ultraviolet rays emitted from the sun. UV rays can cause macular degeneration and even cataracts, which is why it is important to wear sunglasses that protect against 99% -100% of UV rays.
5. Obey workplace safety precautions
Wear protective eye gear when engaging in sporting activities or jobs that could harm the eyes. Such eyewear includes safety goggles, glasses, and helmets. Most of these protectors are constructed from polycarbonate, a much stronger material than plastic.
6. Rest your eyes
Just like our bodies, the eyes also need rest to perform optimally. Depriving yourself of adequate sleep and rest can have an adverse effect on the eyes. During the use of the computer, remember to rest the eyes for at least 20 seconds after every 20 minutes by looking away from the screen. Doing this will reduce eye strain.
7. Visit your eye doctor regularly
Getting regular eye exams is one of the most important things you can do for your eye health. Conditions like glaucoma are much easier to treat if they are discovered early.
Eye injuries can happen at any time, so it is good to know how to handle such emergencies until you can reach a medical professional.
If you get hit on the eye, you should put a shield like a Styrofoam cup on the bone of the eye. Avoid putting pressure on the eye itself.
If something enters your eye, avoid removing it as it may lead to the tearing of tissues in the eye. A Styrofoam cup would also do the job here until you can get to a medical professional.
In the case of a black eye, putting an ice pack on the eye will help to reduce bruising and swelling.
In the case of a chemical burn, rinse the eyes with clean water for about 30 minutes, holding your head beneath the tap. While rinsing, keep your eyes wide open, rolling your eyeballs in all directions so as to ensure the water gets to every part.
Give these eye safety tips a try, and remember to schedule regular eye exams. Prevention is always a better alternative to trying to find a cure.