Your vision is precious and directly influences your quality of life. Unfortunately, vision problems tend to become more common with age — for reasons that may or may not be under our control.
There are things you can do to lower your risk of vision problem and preserve the health of your eyes. Read on as our team at Berks Eye Physicians and Surgeons shares our best advice.
Know Your Risk
Certain diseases are more likely to run in families or in people of certain ethnicities (e.g., African Americans are at a higher risk of glaucoma). Also, lifestyle habits like smoking can raise the risk of eye diseases. And, pre-existing conditions like diabetes can make you more susceptible to certain eye problems.
It’s extremely helpful to know your risk based on your family’s health history, ethnic background and current health status. An eye exam with a trusted optometrist or ophthalmologist is a good time to learn about any diseases you may be pre-disposed to, and learn ways to reduce your risk.
Be Attuned to Changes in Vision
If you experience any changes in your vision or eye pain, you should book an appointment with your eye doctor as soon as possible to have your eyes checked. Signs of potential trouble include the following:
- Sudden or prominent floaters
- Frequent flashes of light
- Hazy vision or double vision
- Difficulty seeing in low light
Protect Your Eyes from the Sun
The sun’s UV rays can seriously damage your eyes and lead to problems like cataracts and abnormal growths (and eyelid cancer). Whenever going outdoors, wear sunglasses that offer 100 percent protection from UVA and UVB rays. If you know you’ll be outside for a while, add a wide-brimmed hat.
Eat Eye-Friendly Foods
Some experts believe eating the right foods can reduce the risk of age-related macular degeneration and cataracts. Eat plenty of dark leafy greens and orange-colored fruits, which contain antioxidants. Other eye-friendly foods include eggs, nuts and coldwater fish rich in omega-3 fatty acids.
Get Into an Exercise Routine
Regular exercise can help stave off serious health problems like high blood pressure or diabetes, which are linked to eye diseases. Get into the routine of exercising regularly. It can be as simple as taking walks around your neighborhood!
Do Not Smoke
Smoking is bad for every part of your body, including your eyes. Work with your primary care physician to develop a smoking cessation plan to reduce your risk.
Contact Berks Eye Physicians and Surgeons Today
For more information about keeping your eyes healthy and your vision clear, please call or email our practice today.