A quick eye health check
Sight is one of the senses we use the most. And yet, it’s also one of the senses that gets the most overlooked (no pun intended) when it comes care.
This isn’t surprising. When they are working perfectly well, we never notice our eyes. They humbly toil away in the background with their over two million working parts, allowing us to see the world in all its glory as well as supporting all of our other senses.
For example, the brain can evaluate the temperature of metal long before you touch it. Hot metals typically give off a reddish-hue, and so sight supports touch by warning the brain that they might be dangerous to approach. This is just one of the many reasons why our eyes deserve the best care we can give them.
There are over two million people living with sight loss in the UK.
One of the main issues is that many people tend to put off an eye test until they notice a significant change in their vision.
Regardless of whether or not you’re experiencing dry eye, a change in vision or you’ve had perfect vision, it is important to get your eyes checked often as conditions can be picked up long before you notice anything.
Of course, many people avoid an eye exam out of fear of finding out they need glasses. But don’t let that stop you: today there are many options that can help improve your vision without the need for glasses.
With that in mind, we’re going to take this time to give your eyes some of the love and care they deserve and discover a few of the best ways you can take good care of them.
8 Steps for healthy eyes
Keeping your eyes healthy shouldn’t be a chore. Here are eight easy steps you can take to look after your peepers and ensure you’re seeing bright and clear well through the New Year.
1. Attend regular check-ups
It’s already been mentioned once but as many people leave having a check-up until too late and their vision is limited, you can never mention it enough.
Eye doctors recommend you have an eye test at least once every two years, no matter if you think your vision is better than it’s ever been. Some sight-threatening conditions such as glaucoma have virtually no symptoms. But one visit to your eye doctor, and it can easily be picked up and treated before it gets worse.
2. Check your family eye history
There are more than 350 hereditary eye diseases, including glaucoma, keratoconus, colour blindness, and corneal dystrophies. If you are aware of your family eye health history, it becomes much easier to diagnose, treat, and manage such diseases. If you haven’t already, find out and share it with your optician.
3. Maintain good eye hygiene
You wouldn’t think your eyes to be unclean places, but we touch them up to one hundred times a day and so are constantly transferring bacteria to them from various questionable surfaces.
It’s recommended to avoid rubbing your eyes too much, especially when in unclean or outdoor environments. It’s also advisable to always thoroughly wash and dry your hands before putting in contact lenses to avoid potentially sight-threatening infections.
4. Always use (sun) protection
It’s a big myth that you can only damage your eyes when the sun is out and shining bright. The fact is, even on cloudy autumn days in the UK, it’s possible for your eyes to experience UV damage. For this reason, it’s essential to wear high-quality sunglasses with full UV protection when it’s sunny, cloudy, windy, or whatever, as well as when in high glare areas such as near water or snow.
Only buy sunglasses that have a CE mark or carry British Standard BS EN ISO 12312-1.
5. Stop smoking, or at least cut-down
We all know how bad smoking is for your general health. But not enough is said about how smoking can be particularly damaging to your eyes.
Smoking can double the risk of developing age-related macular degeneration, the UK’s leading cause of sight loss. That means you could basically lose your vision at a much younger age.
6. Change your make-up regularly
Many people out there are wearing make-up that could be damaging their skin and eyes. This is because all makeup has a shelf-life, with some products lasting a few months and others a few years. It’s therefore important to check the packaging of your make-up often, as well as remove it each night before bed to further reduce the chances of infection.
7. Wear safety goggles
Safety goggles may not look cool, but they will help protect your eyes from flying debris and fine particles that could cause anything from a slight irritation to a disastrous injury. Whether you’re in the workplace or out on the playing field, you should be able to find out information about eye protection from your organisation or an eye charity such as the RNIB.
8. Eat an eye-friendly diet
The typical modern western diet is low in many of the vitamins and minerals that are essential for maintaining good eye health and quality of vision.
For instance, an eye-friendly diet would be one rich in green leafy vegetables such as spinach, broccoli, kale, chard, and cabbage. Such foods may help delay the onset of cataracts and age-related macular degeneration AMD. Other foods such as oranges, kiwis, seeds, nuts, and oily fish have also been shown to improve eye health and slow down such harmful eye conditions.
Like to have the most comprehensive eye exam of your life? Get in touch with our friendly team and claim your no-obligation initial consultation today.