Good eyesight is precious, and Bard Optical wants to help you maintain “Vision for Life” through excellent eye care.
At home, there are several things you can do between eye exams to help you maximize the health of your eyes for 2019 and beyond.
1. Wear Sunglasses As Much As Possible Outdoors
This one is a no-brainer.
You can look stylish in your shades AND prevent blindness.
Put this resolution at the top of your list. Your eyes will thank you.
Besides the more well-known eye problems from too much sun exposure, there is also a danger in the short term of corneal sunburn—which is exactly what it sounds like. It happens when your eyes have no protection during many hours on the slopes or on the water, where reflection exposes you to more UV rays.
This painful condition, also known as photokeratitis, can cause temporary blindness.
The World Health Organization also reports that several types of cancer are possible outcomes of long-term UV exposure: “Melanoma is the most frequent malignant cancer of the eyeball and sometimes requires surgical removal.”
In addition, “a common location for basal cell carcinoma is on the eyelids.”
Cut your risk of developing all of these serious conditions by using a very simple fix—wear your shades whenever outside.
2. Use Safety Glasses For Sports, Hobbies, or Games with Nerf Guns
This is a good news-bad news scenario. According to the federal government’s Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, each year in the U.S.:
- more than 2.5 million eye injuries occur
- 50,000 people permanently lose part or all of their vision from these injuries
- nearly half the injuries occur at home
- 800,000 occur on the job
- 15% of eye injuries among children ages 5-14 are due to sports injuries.
The good news is that more than 90 percent of all eye injuries are preventable with the use of protective eyewear or safety glasses.
And while accidents are unpredictable by their very nature, there are some activities that raise the risk more than others.
Be aware of these situations, including contact sports, hobbyist or home repair activities, and any play involving projectile toys.
This year, resolve to get appropriate safety eyewear and put them on every time you hit the court, practice woodworking, or have a Nerf gun battle.
3. Eat An Eye-Healthy Diet
Following the recommendations from the AREDS eye study and a heart-healthy diet are good places to start.
One of the most comprehensive vision studies to date, the AREDS study released a list of staple food ingredients that are beneficial to the eye.
These include many of the same ingredients that cardiologists recommend for a heart-healthy diet.
The list includes:
- nuts and legumes
- citrus fruits
- leafy green vegetables
- orange vegetables
Drinking plenty of water is also thought to give eye health a boost.
4. Get Current On Your Comprehensive, Dilated Eye Exam
A simple visit to your eye doctor’s office once every year or two can pick up on so many potential issues.
It is sometimes the only way to detect a host of eye problems in their early stages when there is more you can do about them.
In as many as 90 percent of glaucoma cases, the vision loss can be stopped or greatly slowed by appropriate medical treatment, but today there is nothing that can restore vision in any percent of cases once it is already lost.
Dilating (or widening) your pupils is the only way an optometrist can fully see the blood vessels at the back of your eye, which can tell them in detail about the health of your retina, which is where incoming light rays are focused.
In fact, every now and again, an eye exam can tell your doctor that you have warning signs for other, non-eye health problems, such as diabetes and high blood pressure.