We rely on our eyes every day for many different things so it’s imperative that we do all we can to protect them. The consequence of not caring for them can be diminished eyesight and even vision loss, so it’s important to understand the basics of proper eye care.
Many vision problems are age-related but we can still protect our eyes as we get older. Below we discuss a few of the things you can do, with mention of some of the steps you can take to prevent vision loss.
1: Visit your eye care professional
No matter how healthy you think your eyesight is, you should always schedule appointments with your regular eye care professional. You should visit them at least once every two years, although some will recommend annual visits. You should also book an appointment if you suspect there are problems with your vision.
During your appointment, the eye doctor will give you a dilated eye exam. This is to check for any conditions that could one day lead to impaired vision and blindness. Glaucoma, chronic uveitis, cataracts, and diabetic eye disease are just some of the conditions that could lead to vision loss. A dilated eye exam is the best way to discover the onset of these health issues. The sooner they are discovered the better as a treatment plan will then be recommended, such as these chronic uveitis treatments for that particular eye condition.
2: Wear protective eyewear
As stated by Medscape, many eye injuries lead to permanent loss of vision which is why protective eyewear is a must. Such eyewear can include safety goggles and eye guards, which might be used when at work or when carrying out DIY jobs while at home. You will be able to buy the eyewear you need from your local eye care provider, although many sporting shops and DIY outlets also sell the required protection.
3: Quit smoking (and don’t be tempted to start)
Many of us understand the health problems that can be caused by smoking. From respiratory illnesses to certain types of cancer, we have more than enough incentives to quit the habit. Another reason to give up smoking is because it can lead to blindness! As discussed on the CDC website, you are at higher risk of age-related macular degeneration if you smoke, as well as cataract and optic nerve damage, all of which could one day lead to permanent vision loss.
#4: Don’t go to sleep with your contact lenses in
No matter how tired you are of a nighttime, never go to bed with your contact lenses still in. They can cause oxygen deprivation to your eyes if left in overnight, putting you at a higher risk of eye infections and corneal ulcers, both of which could lead to blindness. The same applies if you wear your contact lenses for much of the day. Admittedly, blindness only happens in rare cases, but do you want to take that risk? For the benefit of your eye health, remove your contact lenses when you don’t need to wear them, especially when you’re settling down to sleep.