Taking care of your eyes is essential to maintaining your overall health — both now and in the years to come. But, how do you actually go about protecting your vision? The truth is, the ways you can improve your eye health can also improve many other aspects of your life. Just take a look at these six tips below to find out just how easy it is to see, and feel, so much better.
1) Keep That Eyewear Clean
It’s time to stop using the end of your shirt to clean your glasses. The same goes for tissues, paper towels, and dish soap — all of these are extremely damaging to both the frames and the lenses. To properly care for your eyewear, you’ll need a cleaning solution specially designed for glasses, along with a soft microfiber cloth. Cleaners and cloths can be found in cosmetic and drug stores.
Lens cleaners won’t interact with the coatings on your glasses like household cleaners can, and they’re designed to be streak- and residue-free. Microfiber cloths have short, soft fibers that won’t cause fine scratches, and they excel at cutting through grease without a lot of rubbing or pressure. Simply spritz both sides of the lens with solution, wipe gently with the cloth, and you’re good to go. Try to do this at least twice a day, and you’ll be protecting your specs and your vision.
2) Easy on the Eyes
With more and more people working in front of computers every day, eyestrain is becoming a big problem. Of course, you can get eyestrain from other activities as well, like reading or driving for long periods of time. The good news is that eyestrain won’t do any real damage to your sight, and it’s easy to avoid by periodically refocusing your eyes. Every 20 minutes or so, look away from your computer screen or book for about a minute — looking out into the distance is best. If you drive a lot, you should also be taking periodic breaks and resting your eyes. This won’t only help keep your sight fresh, it’ll also keep you more awake at the wheel — which is always important.
3) Sunny Side Up
Sunscreen protects your skin from harmful UV rays, but your eyes need protection, too. That’s where sunglasses come in, but not any old pair will do: those sunglasses need to block out 100% of both UV-A and UV-B rays. That’s what will help keep your eyelids and corneas safe from cancers and other damage, and also helps guard against cataracts and macular degeneration. Polarized sunglass lenses are also a great option to consider, as they help reduce glare from the sun. No more squinting on those bright summer days!
4) What’s Up, Doc?
It’s very important to come in for your comprehensive dilated eye exam once a year, as it’s the only way to check for diseases such as glaucoma, diabetic eye disease, and macular degeneration. Why dilation? The widening of the pupil allows your doctor to look more fully at the back of the eyes to see if any damage, disease, or other problems are present. So, when you schedule your yearly physical, do your eyes a favor and check in with your local optometrist, too.
5) Be All You Can Be
Improving your eye health is one of the many benefits of a healthy diet and regular exercise. Obesity, diabetes, and smoking can all cause vision loss, glaucoma, and other serious eye conditions. Eating foods like carrots, leafy greens, and fish rich in omega-3 fatty acids all help improve vision, and they’re a great way to help maintain a healthy weight as well.
6) Get Protected
While factory workers and tradesmen know that safety glasses are an absolute must at work, many of us don’t realize that eye protection plays a big role in keeping our eyes safe during some of our favorite activities. Anything that causes airborne particles, such as woodworking or intensive cleaning, has the potential to damage your eyes, so goggles or other protective eyewear should be worn. If you play ball sports, polycarbonate eye protection is also highly recommended — the ultra-strong material will protect your eyes from projectiles, keeping your precious sight safe!Now that you know how to improve your vision and protect your eyes from damage, try to think of ways you can start incorporating these tips into your daily life. Whether it’s adding a few more leafy green veggies to your diet or finally scheduling that eye exam, taking care of your eyes is definitely an investment — of both time and money — worth making.