A star, a boat, a house…your mother, your best friend, your fiancé…red lips, black dress, golden pumps – can you imagine any of these if you don’t hold their image in your mind? But how does your brain get all this imagery? Through your eyes, of course! Your eyes are a window to the world; they are a window to your soul. Your eyes express everything within and everything without. They are precious! So, it’s important to take good care of them. Here are 10 useful tips to help look after your eyes.
It’s important to keep your eyes protected against the sun if you are outdoors, even when it’s cloudy! Optometrists and GPs suggest wearing sunglasses to protect against UV rays. Most prescription glasses now have a UV filter which can help protect your eyes against sunlight. UV radiation can harm your eyes, causing conditions such as cataract and macular degeneration which may lead to vision loss. You could also try wearing a hat to help shade your eyes.
Eye infections happen when bacteria enter the eye. Some symptoms of eye infection could be watery eyes, pain, redness, swelling, itchiness or blurry vision. If you have any of these symptoms you should go to your doctor and get an eye exam to make sure your eyes don’t get any worse over time and can be treated as soon as possible. Cleaning your hands before touching your eyes goes a long way to avoid infection. if you wear contact lenses make sure they are cleaned properly. Always using clean towels and flannels can also help.
Use adequate lighting
Direct exposure to bright lighting such as that of a computer or a phone screen may strain your eyes if used too much. Some symptoms of eye strain could be sore or watery eyes. You can also get headaches if you are surrounded by fluorescents lights. Working in dim lighting can also affect your eyes and make you feel more tired. The best way to prevent these problems is to take regular breaks, adding lamps to brighten dark areas and avoid bright glares. You can also adjust the brightness on your screens to suit the ambient light conditions and your personal comfort.
Keep your eyes well hydrated and moist
Nowadays there are many options available over the counter to help keep your eyes moist and well hydrated. If you have dry or sore eyes, you could use some water based artificial tears or a good brand eye drops to manage that. If you have poor hydration this can cause dry eyes and you may have symptoms such as blurred vision, burning or a stinging sensation, you may also get an increase in mucus in your eyes. Drinking at least 2l of water can not only keep your eyes hydrated, but can also improve your overall health and bring a glow to your skin.
Do not overuse contact lenses
Contact lenses are a substitute for glasses and are perfectly safe to help you see more clearly. However, if you wear contact lenses for too long they can damage your eyes. Contact lenses can carry bacteria so if your lenses are not clean they can cause eye problems. It is important to replace your lenses as often as possible to avoid any type of infection and only use them for prescribed duration,
Lack of sleep can cause your eyes to become itchy, twitchy and/or bloodshot. You may also develop dark circles around eyes or have puffy, dry eyes if you routinely don’t get enough sleep. Dry eyes can become painful and cause irritation. Lack of sleep can also cause more serious eye problems such as glaucoma which can build up in your eyes and affect your vision. It’s important to get enough sleep each night to improve your overall health and have fresh, bright eyes,
Smoking is injurious to health and can have an adverse impact on your whole body, including your eyes. Smoking is also linked to glaucoma and distorted vision. The tobacco chemicals in cigarettes can harm the blood vessels inside your eyes and can damage your retina. Doctors and GPs will advise you to quit smoking to help improve your health and your sight.
Regular Eye Checks
Having regular eye check-ups not only examine your sight, they can also pickup early symptoms of many underlying health conditions such as high blood pressure, diabetes, cholesterol and many more. The recommended time frame for an eye test is every two years. If you have ever experienced any signs that affect your sight such as blind spots, floaters in the eye, double or distorted vision, this should be examined ASAP to make sure no long-term damage is caused.
Healthy Diet and Exercise routine
Adopting a healthy diet and exercising regularly can benefit your overall health and help prevent lifestyle diseases such as diabetes which can damage blood vessels, and high blood pressure which is linked to eye disease. Vitamins such as A, C & E are also great for boosting your eye health. Foods that are rich in nutrients beneficial to eyes include carrots, red peppers, broccoli strawberries, sweet potato and salmon.
Follow the rule of 20-20-20
It is important to take regular breaks throughout the day to prevent unnecessarily straining your eyes or body. You may be familiar with the rule of 20-20-20 – it is a quick way to keep on top of your eye sight especially if you spend too long looking at a screen. All you have to do is this – every 20 minutes that you use a screen, look away and focus at an object that is 20 feet away from you, for 20 seconds. This is a great way of relaxing both your eyes and brain.
All of the above tips are easy to follow but very effective in helping you take care of your eyes. Eye care is mostly common sense. Knowing when to stop if it’s hurting your eyes, and adopting good eye hygiene are no brainers. Make them a part of your daily routine and your eyes will thank you by staying bright and shiny!