First and foremost, Bard Optical serves as a medical provider. Because of that, we want to ensure all of our patients stay happy and healthy throughout their lives. September, being Healthy Aging Month, is as good a time as any to stress the importance of seeing an eye care professional regularly. Comprehensive dilated eye exams become more crucial with age – beyond a basic eye exam. While vision may seem fine, age-related diseases often have no symptoms. Education is key in helping prevent eye conditions. Let your patients know what could happen, and what they can do to prevent problems in the future.
Early diagnosis is essential to treating these potentially blinding eye diseases, which may become worse with age.
• Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) destroys the macula, harming central vision.
• Cataracts will cloud the lens of the eye.
• Diabetic retinopathy damages blood vessels in the retina.
• Glaucoma causes fluid and pressure build up, hurting the optic nerve.
In general, keeping overall good health will help decrease a person’s chance of developing health problems.
• Eat a healthy, balanced, and nutrient-rich diet. Load up on fruits and vegetables, with dark leafy greens being particularly good for eye health. Fish such as salmon and tuna are also beneficial.
• Exercise! Being overweight increases your risk for diabetes, or worsens diabetic retinopathy and glaucoma. Being active can improve blood pressure, increase balance and stability, and reduce symptoms of anxiety or depression. Even walking for 30 minutes a day can significantly improve a person’s overall well-being.
• Don’t Smoke. Smoking affects all parts of your body – including your eyes. It increases your risk of AMD, cataracts, and other eye diseases and conditions. It is especially damaging to the optic nerve. Don’t try to cut it cold turkey – create a support system of family and friends and consider alternatives to smoking.
• Wear sunglasses and hats when outdoors. Even on an overcast day, people are exposed to harmful UV rays. Protecting your eyes from UVA and UVB rays is crucial to preventing further eye damage.
Follow these rules to maintain your vision for life.