You often hear about the importance of taking care of your heart, lungs, kidneys and liver, but it’s equally important to look after your eyes.
These organs play a vital role in your day-to-day life, and eye damage can rarely be reversed. Here are a few lifestyle habits that can help you maintain good vision and keep your eyes healthy. Limit your screen time A modern health hazard for your eyes is too much time spent staring at a computer, tablet, television or smartphone screen. In fact, North Americans spend an average of 10 hours per day staring at a screen. This can have considerable consequences for your vision. As with other parts of your body, the more you use your eyes, the more tired and worn out they get. Staring at a computer or phone screen for hours on end puts tremendous strain on the nerves and muscles of your eyes. This can also increase the frequency of headaches. If you experience soreness around your eyes or blurred vision, it’s best to take a break from your screens. Manage your diabetes Diabetes is a disease that affects your blood sugar levels, but it can also cause vision problems. When your blood sugar is too high, it puts pressure on the delicate blood vessels that allow blood to flow to your retinas. This can lead to a condition called retinopathy. Diabetics who smoke or drink are even more at risk of developing this condition. One way to keep your eyes in good health if you have diabetes is to schedule an annual diabetic eye exam with your optometrist. Ditch the tobacco There’s a long list of health reasons to quit smoking or avoid starting altogether, and protecting your eyes is one of them. In fact, smoking or chewing tobacco products increases your risk for a variety of eye problems including macular degeneration, retinopathy and cataracts. Eat a balanced diet What you eat can have a direct impact on your eyes. In particular, it’s best to avoid foods that are high in fats. Instead, opt for a balanced diet that incorporates several sources of vitamins C and E as well as omega-3 fatty acids. Carotenoids are also great for your eyes, so be sure to eat plenty of colourful fruits and vegetables such as carrots, oranges, tomatoes and peppers. Book an eye exam in Edmonton today Healthy adults should have their eyes checked by an optometrist every two years. For children, seniors, people who wear glasses and people with diabetes, an annual eye exam is recommended. To book your next appointment at Optometrists’ Clinic, contact us today.