Ocular health refers to the proper functioning of the structures in and around your eyes. This includes good vision and the absence of disease. Here are five tips to help you maintain lifelong ocular health.
1. Eat a balanced diet A diet rich in leafy green vegetables, citrus fruit, oily fish and plant protein provides you with nutrients that can help delay or even prevent age-related vision problems such as cataracts and macular degeneration. Eating a balanced diet also helps you maintain a healthy weight, which reduces your risk of developing Type 2 diabetes and subsequent vision loss. 2. Use protective eyewear Frequent exposure to the sun’s ultraviolet (UV) rays can damage your eyes and increase your risk of cataracts and macular degeneration. Wear sunglasses designed to block 100 per cent of harmful UV rays, and opt for a polarized pair to prevent eye strain caused by solar glare. Additionally, you should always wear safety glasses in home workshops, on construction sites and in other hazardous environments with airborne particles and debris. Protective eyewear is also recommended when playing sports such as hockey and racquetball. 3. Quit smoking People who smoke cigarettes have a higher risk of developing cataracts, macular degeneration, uveitis and other eye conditions. Using tobacco products can also damage the optic nerve and cause blindness. If you smoke and need help quitting, speak with a health-care professional. 4. Take screen breaks Staring at a computer or phone screen for a prolonged periods of time can cause eye strain, blurry vision, dry eyes and headaches. Rest your eyes every 20 minutes by looking at something 20 feet (six metres) away for at least 20 seconds. You should also take 15-minute screen breaks every two hours. Adjusting the brightness, distance and angle of your screen can also help. 5. Visit your eye doctor During an eye exam, your optometrist will assess your ocular health, look for early signs of eye conditions and determine whether you need glasses or contact lenses to correct your vision. In general, healthy adults should have their eyes tested every two years. For children, seniors and people who wear contact lenses regularly, an annual eye exam is recommended. Eye care in the Edmonton area At Optometrists’ Clinic, your ocular health is a top priority for our dedicated team of optometrists, opticians and eye doctors. We offer general and pediatric eyes exams to assess your family’s needs and provide treatment for a variety of eye conditions. Contact us today to schedule an appointment at one of our eye centres in Edmonton, Leduc or Weslock.