We only get two eyes over our lifetime, so why take them for granted? Just like the rest of your body, there are things you can do to either impede or improve your eye health. Failing to take proper care of your eyes could lead to a number of serious conditions, such as macular degeneration, glaucoma and even blindness. Luckily, you can take preventative action now to safeguard your vision. Follow these 10 ways to keep your eye health in check now and in the future.

Eat Healthy Foods That Promote Eye Health

We all know that carrots are good for our eyes, but did you know that kale and salmon can improve eye health as well? A well-balanced diet that’s high in vitamins A, C, E, Omega-3 fatty acids, along with lutein and zinc, can help prevent vision problems. So be sure to eat lots of green leafy vegetables, oily fish, nuts and beans, citrus fruit and, of course, carrots.

Maintain A Healthy Weight

Your weight can also impact your chances of developing a serious eye condition. Carrying extra weight can put pressure on the blood vessels in your eyes and cause poor vision to develop. Plus, diabetes is directly correlated to vision loss. So if you are having issues with your weight, see your doctor.

Update Your Prescription

Do your eyes feel sore even when you wear your glasses? Are you squinting a lot lately? Your prescription might be out of date. Since your eyes can deteriorate over time, it’s important to get your prescription updated to ensure your vision is as clear as possible.

Wear Sunglasses

Too much exposure to UV rays can increase your odds of getting macular degeneration and cataracts. However, not all sunglasses are created equal and many that are found in stores today are simply costume glasses with next to no actual protection. That’s why it’s highly recommended to find a pair that blocks out 99% of UVA and UVB rays with wrap around the sides to protect your eyes completely.

Use Safety Goggles When Necessary

If you’re an avid athlete, enjoy working around the home, or have a job that involves working with hazardous material or airborne debris, always wear safety goggles to protect your eyes. Safety glasses, shields, eye guards, and sports goggles are specially designed to provide the protection you need to keep your eyes safe and healthy. So don’t forget to use them.

Take Breaks When Using A Computer

Did you know that your computer and mobile phone usage could be damaging your eyes? Staring too long at a blue light screen can cause eyestrain and dry eyes among other aggravating conditions, which is why you should take frequent breaks every twenty minutes. You can also prevent eye strain by positioning the monitor slightly below your field of view and by using an anti-glare cover on the screen.

Quit Smoking Cigarettes

We all know that smoking is bad for our lungs and heart, but did you know it’s also linked to age-related macular degeneration, cataracts and other diseases? The effects of smoking can be significant – decreased blood flow throughout your body, inflammation, hardening of the arteries, and reduction in the supply of antioxidants that can all lead to serious and irreversible eye conditions.

Practice Eye Strengthening Activities

Strengthening exercises can help to support the eye muscles. Try holding a pencil at arm’s length and focusing on the eraser. Then slowly move it closer to your eyes until its about 5 inches from your head, while keeping the focus on the eraser. Repeat this up to 10 times each day to keep your eyes in good shape.

Improve Lighting

The lighting at work and in your home can also impact the health of your eyes. Doctors recommend limiting exposure to artificial and dim light as much as possible since they both can be harmful to your eyesight.  Instead, take frequent breaks and go outside to get more exposure to natural light, which is essential for healthy eye development.

Get An Annual Eye Exam

Even if you think your eyes are healthy, an eye exam is the only way to really determine if you have an eye condition or disease. In fact, a number of common eye diseases, such as glaucoma, have very few warning signs until it’s too late. And the earlier you spot a condition, the easier it will be to treat. So be sure to get an annual eye exam to detect any problems in the early stages.

If you haven’t had an eye exam in the past three years, there’s no better time than now! Come visit us at Laurier Optical, and we’ll give you an exam right in our store. If you need to upgrade your subscription, or purchase sunglasses or sports goggles, you can find a wide range of eyewear options here too. Contact us today to set up an appointment!