May is one of our favorite months, because it’s healthy vision month! Are you doing all you can to take care of your eyes? If you’re not sure, use the information in this post as your healthy vision checklist!
1 – Have regular eye exams.
Visiting your eye doctor regularly is the best way to keep your eyes healthy. With a comprehensive exam, your doctor can not only help you see clearer now, but also help you plan for clear vision in the future. Adults age 18 – 60 should have an eye exam at least every two years, while older adults should see an eye doctor annually. Schedule your exam today!
2 – Eat a balanced diet.
Good nutrition is key to both overall health and maintaining healthy vision. A diet that is low in fat and rich in fruits, vegetables, and whole grains can help you feel healthier and see clearer! The following foods are particularly helpful for eye health:
— Leafy green vegetables such as kale, spinach, romaine lettuce, collards, and turnip greens. These vegetables are high in lutein and zeaxanthin, which help to lower your risk of age-related macular degeneration.
— Citrus fruits like oranges, tangerines, grapefruit, and lemons. These fruits contain high amounts of vitamin C, which is an important antioxidant for eye health.
— Beans, including black-eyed peas, kidney beans, and lima beans. Legumes contain zinc, which can help protect your eyes from the damaging effects of light.
— Cold-water fish such as salmon, sardines, tuna, and halibut. These fish are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which may help reduce the risk of eye disease.
— Carrots, sweet potatoes, apricots, and cantaloupe. Orange-colored fruits and vegetables are high in beta-carotene, which helps to improve night vision.
3 – Avoid smoking.
Smoking increases your risk of developing cataracts and is directly linked to many serious eye diseases, including age-related macular degeneration.
4 – Wear sunglasses.
It is important to protect your eyes from UV rays, which can accelerate the formation of cataracts. Make sure you choose sunglasses that block 100 percent of UV-A and UV-B rays.
5 – Wear eye protection.
Don’t forget your eye protection when you take to the field, court, or spend time in the workshop. Standard ANSI-approved protective eyewear is sufficient for most home projects. Sports eye protection should meet the specific requirements of that sport. These requirements are usually established and certified by the sport’s governing body and/or the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM).
6 – Care for your contacts.
If you wear contact lenses, make sure you follow your doctor’s instructions regarding their care and use. Do not sleep in your contacts, do not use expired solution, and do not wear disposable contacts for longer than they are intended to be used. Abusing your contacts can cause corneal ulcers, severe pain, and even vision loss.
7 – Watch out for eye fatigue.
If you spend most of your work day at the computer, follow the 20-20-20 rule to help reduce eye strain. Look up from your work every 20 minutes at an object 20 feet away for 20 seconds. If your eyes still feel consistently strained, contact your eye doctor to discuss treatment options.
Your sight is one of your most important senses, so use this healthy vision checklist to take care of your eyes!