6 Tips for better eye care

The sunset glinting off a lake, the awe of fireworks exploding overhead, that messy fingerpainting created by your child—eyesight makes all of it better.

Most people can’t imagine what it would be like to lose their vision, yet we often take it for granted until our eyesight is weakening. Experts recommend a number of things you can do to protect your eyes.

1. Do you have your parent’s eyes?

Risks for certain eye conditions are hereditary, so knowing about any history of eye disease in your family can help prepare for, or even prevent, its onset.

2. Keep an eye on your diet

Eat lots of fruits and vegetables, especially dark leafy greens, for good eye health. This can help prevent certain vision problems, like cataracts. And this, along with exercise, can also prevent diabetes, a disease that often leads to vision loss.

3. Exercise and don’t smoke

Increased blood circulation brought on by exercise is important for good health, but especially for the tiny blood vessels in your eyes. Smoking does the opposite and increases your chances of eye disease.

4. The 20-20-20 rule for 20/20 vision

How long have you been looking at your phone or computer? For every 20 minutes of focusing on an electronic device, you should take 20 seconds to focus on something 20 feet away.

5. Protect your peepers

The sun, which makes it possible for us to see, can be damaging to your eyes. So, don’t look at it, and wear sunglasses while outside. And don’t forget protective eyewear when you are playing or working in conditions that could be dangerous for your eyes.

6. Get a professional to look into your eyes

Adults up to age 64 should have eye exams at least every two years. Adults over 64 and children under 18 should have an eye exam every year. Some medical conditions may warrant having your eyes checked more often.

Eye safety on the job and at home

Some workplaces include potential hazards to the eye, but over two-thirds of eye injuries occur outside of a work setting. Whether you’re on the job or in your home, consider these safety tips from the Canadian National Institute for the Blind:

  • At work or doing jobs around the house, be sure to wear protective eyewear made for the task. The Canadian Standards Association (CSA) mark on safety eyewear is a sign that the glasses meet or exceed safety standards.
  • Read the instructions (and follow them) when you use chemicals.
  • If you’re working with spray nozzles, point them away from you.
  • When uncorking Champagne or sparkling wine bottles, turn your eyes away.
  • Use grease shields on your frying pans.
  • Before you start up the lawn mower, remove rocks and stones from the lawn.
  • Teach kids to safely handle scissors, knives and pencils.

Make sure eye health and eye safety remains a priority. A little preventative care (plus regular eye exams) goes a long way to keeping your eyes as healthy as possible for as long as possible. And healthy eyes will mean you continue to appreciate amazing sights like a loved one’s smile, the pages of a good book, and the view from the mountain trail you’ve just hiked up.





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