“Eye” bet you didn’t know that May is Healthy Vision Month!
This month-long observance was started in 2003 by the National Eye Institute in hopes to encourage people to get regular eye check-ups to maintain eye health instead of waiting until a problem arises. Just like it’s important for you to see your primary care provider regularly to get check-ups, you need to do the same thing for your eyes!
Here’s a short list of things you can do to maintain or improve your eye health:
Schedule an eye exam
Scheduling an eye exam is extremely important. At an eye exam, your eye doctor may be able to identify problems with your eyes or your vision long before you have any symptoms. Some diseases like glaucoma silently rob people of their vision when not caught and treated early.
Protect your eyes
Wear protection! Protection means wearing sunglasses that protect your eyes from UV light as well as wearing the proper impact or splash resistant eye wear when working around the yard, with chemicals, or using specialty equipment. If you work with lasers, be sure to use the correct laser eye filters.
Eat a healthy diet
Generally speaking, the same foods that you should eat (and avoid) to maintain a healthy weight and keep your heart and brain healthy are the same foods that contribute to eye health. Eating colorful foods, along with green leafy vegetables, and including Omega-3 rich fish in your diet can help ensure you get all the vitamins and antioxidants your eyes need for optimal health. Also, ask your eye doctor about taking eye vitamins.
Be sure to get your exercise. People who exercise regularly are at a lower risk for certain eye conditions.
Register for smoking cessation classes if you smoke. Smoking damages vision by limiting blood flow and oxygen to the eyes. If you need help quitting, call 1-800-QUIT-NOW.
Now that you know different ways to maintain or improve your eye health, it’s important to be consistent.
We provide services to individuals of all ages who are blind and visually impaired. If you or someone you know is experiencing vision loss and could benefit from our services, please call 603-224-4039 or email [email protected].
About the Author: Beth Daisy is the Supervisor of Occupational Therapy at Future In Sight.