close up of eye

How to Maintain Optimal Eye Health

Eye problems can be detrimental, affecting one’s way of life long-term. Luckily, these issues can be easily prevented by regularly practicing essential eye care habits every day, and they’re practical and easy enough to maintain daily.

Here are eight eye care tips you need to consider maintaining optimal eye health and keep your eyesight in the best condition possible.

Visit an “Eye Doctor” Regularly

Everyone needs to have annual eye exams as it protects the eyesight, allowing each individual to see their best. Besides that, having eye exams can detect diseases like glaucoma, which is asymptomatic, making it crucial to catch them early on when they’re easier to treat. Whenever going for an eye exam, you’ll either meet an optometrist or ophthalmologist.

An optometrist offers general eye care but doesn’t do surgery, making them the perfect professionals to address temporary blurred visions or blindness. However, if you suffer from something more serious, such as a damaged or diseased cornea, having corneal cross-linking surgery performed by an ophthalmologist is ideal—reducing pain and improving the appearance of your cornea.

Always Protect Your Eyes from the Sun

Regular exposure to sunlight and ultraviolet (UV) rays increases your risks of developing macular degeneration, causing corneal sunburn or photokeratitis. Wearing the “right pair” of shades can protect your eyes from the sun and its UV rays with ease. Just make sure to go for a pair that can block up to 99% to 100& of UVA and UVB rays.

If you don’t like wearing sunglasses, UV-protected contact lenses and eyeglasses or putting on caps, visors, and hats are ideal.

Keep Proper Computer Screen Distance and Room Lighting

Your computer monitors need to be positioned around an arm’s length away from your eyes and at least 20 degrees below eye level, keeping your eyes from getting strained. Besides maintaining the ideal distance, ensure sufficient and diffused lighting in your room as focused lighting can result in glares, placing excess stress on your eyes.

Use Safety Eyewear Whenever Doing Highly Mobile or Dangerous Activities

No matter what you’re doing, always ensure your eyes are safe. For instance, if you want to swim, remember to wear swimming goggles to prevent your eyes from getting exposed to harsh chlorine, or when you’re gardening at home, wear safety glasses to prevent dust and bacteria from entering your eyes. Meanwhile, if you’re going to play sports like lacrosse, racquetball, or ice hockey, make sure to wear eye protection as these are susceptible to eye injuries.

Observe the 20-20-20 Rule

If you’re looking to keep your eyes in optimal health the most natural way possible, try to adhere to the “20-20-20 Rule.” It includes looking away from your computer monitor and fixing your gaze on a particular object at least 20 feet away from you every 20 minutes, blinking 20 times to prevent drying of your eyes, and taking 20 steps every 20 minutes. Doing this maintains good eye health while preventing you from succumbing to a sedentary lifestyle, alleviating further issues.

Quit Smoking

Long-term smoking isn’t only detrimental to your lungs. It’s also damaging to your eyes as they likely lead to cataracts, damaging your optic nerves, and triggering macular degeneration—and those are just some of the many medical issues associated with smoking. If you’ve tried giving up the habit before but to no avail, keep trying until you succeed. After all, the more times you try to quit, the higher your chances of succeeding.

Follow a Healthy and Balanced Diet

Excellent eye health begins with the food you eat. For eyesight, the best nutrients are omega-3 fatty acids, zinc, and lutein, preventing age-related vision issues such as macular degeneration and cataracts. You can get all these by regularly eating green leafy vegetables such as spinach or kale, oily fish like salmon or tuna, nonmeat protein sources including eggs, nuts, or beans, and citrus fruits and juices.

Additionally, following a healthy and well-balanced diet helps you stay healthy, lowering your chances of becoming obese and getting type 2 diabetes, one of the leading causes of blindness in adults.

Use the “Right Kind” of Makeup

If you need to wear makeup every day for work, or like it for fun, pick brands that work well for your skin and eyes. That’s because some may cause severe allergic reactions to your eyes, leading to red, puffy, and teary eyes that last for several days. Besides being wary of what makeup to wear, always use a makeup remover before going to bed to avoid bacterial build-up from any leftover makeup in the eye area.

applying eye drops

Finally, always clean your makeup brushes and other applications regularly.

Never take your eyes for granted and proactively take care of them to maintain excellent eyesight as you grow older—and the following tips mentioned can keep your eyes healthy. You don’t need to do all of them at once, as taking it one step at a time is a great way to condition your eyes and ensure optimal health over time.

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