A Clearer View

Latest treatment options and news about cataracts, dry eye syndrome and other eye care topics.

5 Ways to Protect Your Eye Health

by Damion Wasylow 3 May 2022 11:27 AM

father and daughter on beach in sunglasses

May is Healthy Vision Month, and with warmer weather right around the corner, now is the perfect time to start taking extra care of your eye health. As you spend more time outdoors and work on projects around the house, it’s vital to protect your eyes.

Here are five simple ways to keep your eyes healthy this summer and beyond.

1. Get Regular Eye Exams

Scheduling regular eye exams is one of the best ways to protect your eye health. Experts recommend getting comprehensive dilated eye exams every 1-2 years for people who:

  • Are over 60 years of age
  • Have a family history of glaucoma
  • Are African-American and over 40 years of age
  • Have high blood pressure or diabetes

If you wear contacts or eyeglasses, make sure you schedule annual exams to ensure your prescription is up to date.

2. Wear Sunglasses

Most people remember to wear sunscreen before they head outdoors, but they often forget the importance of protecting their eyes from the sun.

UV exposure can contribute to:

If you’re spending time outdoors, be sure to wear sunglasses that block 99-100% of UVA and UVB radiation. This one simple step could save your eyes from chronic issues in the future.

3. Wear Protective Eyewear

If you’re playing sports or working on projects around the home, be sure to wear appropriate protective eyewear.

As a general rule of thumb, it’s best to wear protective eyewear when doing:

  • Home improvement projects. Eyewear can protect your eyes from injury and debris, such as sawdust or wood chips.
  • Yard work. If you’re trimming bushes, pruning trees, weed whacking or even mowing the lawn, make sure that you’re wearing protective eyewear. A stray branch or stone can cause serious eye injury.
  • Sports, such as lacrosse, archery, shooting/hunting, motorcycling, tennis and other sports that involve projectiles.

There are many modern and stylish options for protective eyewear, even prescription versions, so don’t skip this critical step.

4. Eat Healthy and Maintain a Healthy Weight

Eating right and maintaining a healthy weight can help you naturally protect your eyes. Like any other part of your body, your eyes need the right nutrients for optimal function and health.

Make sure that your diet includes plenty of foods rich in eye-protecting nutrients, like:

  • Vitamin A
  • Vitamin E
  • Vitamin C
  • Omega-3 fatty acids
  • Zeaxanthin
  • Zinc
  • Lutein

Zeaxanthin and lutein are especially important for protecting your eyes from sun damage and blue light.

Eating healthy is only one piece of the puzzle. It’s also important to ensure that you’re maintaining a healthy weight. Research shows that obesity can increase the risk of serious eye diseases, including wet macular degeneration, diabetic retinopathy and glaucoma.

5. Quit Smoking

If you’re a smoker, there’s no better time than now to quit. Studies show that smoking can increase the risk of:

  • Diabetic retinopathy
  • Cataracts
  • Glaucoma
  • Age-related macular degeneration

Eventually, smoking can lead to vision loss. Take steps to quit smoking. And if you’re not a smoker, kudos!, make sure that you never start.

Whether it’s been a while since your last eye exam, you’re in the market for some great looking protective eyewear, or you just want to ensure your eyes are as healthy as possible, contact North Florida Cataract Specialists and Vision Care today at 352-373-4300.



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