Did you know? According to the American Foundation for the Blind, experts predict that by 2030, rates of severe vision loss will double along with the country’s aging population?
So what can you do to help protect your eye health?
Prevent Vision Loss: A How-To Guide
We’ve put together a list of 5 ways you can help protect your vision, and prevent vision loss:
- Wear those sunglasses.
And start today if you don’t wear them already. According to Aging.com: “if left unprotected, UVA and UVB rays can harm your eyes and contribute to the formation of cataracts. When you’re out in the sun (even in the wintertime), it’s important to wear sunglasses and a wide-brimmed hat for full protection from harmful radiation. Opt for lenses that offer 100 percent UV protection and be aware that this feature is not offered by all types of sunglasses.”
- Look for warning signs of changes in your vision.
“If you start noticing changes in your vision, see your eye doctor immediately,” recommend the experts at All About Vision.“Some trouble signs to look for are double vision, hazy vision and difficulty seeing in low light conditions. Other signs and symptoms of potentially serious eye problems that warrant immediate attention include red eyes, frequent flashes of light, floaters, eye pain and swelling.”
- Schedule a comprehensive eye exam.
Many people wait too long, or wait until something is really wrong before scheduling a proper, thorough eye exam. According to the National Eye Institute, “having a comprehensive, dilated eye exam is one of the best things you can do to protect your eye health. A comprehensive dilated eye exam is a painless procedure in which an eye care professional examines your eyes to look for common vision problems and eye diseases, many of which have no early warning signs. These regular comprehensive eye exams can help you protect your sight and make sure that you are seeing your best.”
- Exercise, exercise, exercise.
Exercising is excellent for maintaining our overall health – and our eyes are no different. The American Academy of Ophthalmology says “our eyes need good blood circulation and oxygen intake, and both are stimulated by regular exercise. Regular exercise also helps keep our weight in the normal range, which reduces the risk of diabetes and of diabetic retinopathy. Gentler exercise, including walking, yoga, tai chi, or stretching and breathing, can also be effective ways to keep healthy.”
- Quit smoking.
Not only is smoking detrimental to your entire cardiovascular system, it can be devastating to your vision. According to Johns Hopkins University, “current and former smokers have up to four times the risk of developing ARMD—the leading cause of blindness in the U.S.—than those who never smoked. The risk remains high even up to 20 years after quitting. In fact, an Australian study estimated that as many as one in five cases of ARMD-related blindness in that country could be related to smoking. Researchers say there are several reasons for the increased risk in smokers, including cellular changes, oxidative stress and vascular constriction.”
See what you’ve been missing!
Start protecting your eyes today – don’t wait until it’s too late. Learn more about compassionate medical and surgical eye care. Trust ZiekerEye Ophthalmology for leading-edge solutions to your vision problems. Call us at 518.450.1080 or use our convenient online Request an Appointment form to connect with our scheduling team.