As we kick off the new year, many of us are making resolutions to better ourselves in 2018. One of the most common New Year's resolutions is to improve our health. We know you'll be hitting that tough gym routine or counting calories for the next few weeks. However, there are simple ways you can improve your eye health that will fit right in with your hectic schedule.
1) Eat your way to good vision
Food is your body's fuel, and filling it with the good stuff will ensure the best performance from it. Studies suggest that foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids, lutein, zinc, and vitamins C and E can help prevent vision problems like macular degeneration and cataracts. Some easy sources of these nutrients are:
- Citrus fruits and berries
- Green, leafy vegetables like spinach, kale, and collards
- Oily fish like salmon or tuna
- Non-meat protein sources like eggs, nuts, and beans
2) Take a computer break
Staring at a computer, tablet, or phone screen for too long can cause blurry vision, headaches, eyestrain, dry eyes, trouble focusing, and neck, back, and shoulder pain. While limiting contact with screens seems impossible, here are some solutions to help protect your eyesight:
- 20/20/20 rule: Every 20 minutes look at something 20 feet away for 20 seconds
- Make sure your glasses or contacts prescription is up to date
- Talk to your doctor about glasses specifically for the computer. We have many options to help filter out harmful blue light caused by screens, and relieve your computer eye symptoms. You can read more about these solutions here.
- Move the screen so your eyes are level with the top of the monitor, so you're looking slightly down at the screen.
- Get up at least every 2 hours and take a 15-minute break
3) Wear sunglasses
UV rays aren't just harmful during the summer. Exposure year-round can build over a lifetime and result in cataracts, cornea burns, and even cancer of the eyelid. Whenever you're outside try to wear a pair that blocks 99-100% of UVA and UVB rays. If you're in need of a pair, our Optical Studio has many styles to fit all needs and preferences.
4) Properly clean your contact lenses
At the end of the day, it's tempting to just pop your contacts into the case and go to bed. However, improperly cleaning your contact lenses can cause many different eye infections.
Always wash your hands before handling lenses or touching your eyes. Rinse and rub lenses carefully with disinfecting solution every time you remove your contacts. Clean, rinse, and dry the case each day, and replace it every month. Never wear lenses longer than recommended by your doctor.
5) Stop smoking
Most everyone knows the dangers of a smoking habit, but did you know it can damage your eyesight? Smoking can cause macular degeneration and cataracts, as well as weakening arteries which leads to retina damage.
6) Visit your eye doctor regularly
Everyone needs a regular eye exam, even young children. It is the best way to protect your vision and ensure you are seeing your best. Eye exams can catch diseases that often have no symptoms, like glaucoma. The earlier they are caught, the easier they are to treat.
Not only can the doctors at Coastal Vision do yearly exams and scan for disease, we can treat medical issues like scratches, debris in the eye, and dry eyes. Before you shell out for an ER visit, call us so we can help.
We wish you the best of luck with your resolutions throughout 2018, and a happy and healthy New Year!