Your senses work together to paint a picture of your world. When we’re young, we think we’re invincible and spend our days exploring and learning all we can. It’s easy to see and enjoy all that surrounds us, but it can be difficult to anticipate what the future may hold.
Hiking a mountain, swimming, driving, or simply enjoy the colours of a sunset—many of us take our favourite activities for granted. But with a little effort, care, and attention, we can maintain the way we see the world around us and preserve these abilities for years to come. And keep you living a full life well into the future.
Your eyes are key to this full life, and as you get older, they’ll need extra help to maintain normal health. Here are a few actions you can do now to develop healthier habits for the future.
- Visit the Eye Doctor Regularly
Eye exams help spot disease or health issues that may not have obvious symptoms, like glaucoma. Even many non-sight related illnesses—like diabetes, high blood pressure, autoimmune diseases, and some forms of cancer—can be detected during a comprehensive eye exam. And some diseases can be treated more effectively if they’re discovered early.
Everyone, even young children, need regular eye exams. And adults should visit the eye doctor at least once a year. If it’s been a while since your last visit, call today and make an appointment. And if you’ve had an eye exam recently, go ahead and schedule your next one.
- Eat a Balanced Diet
Proper nutrition helps establish a foundation for overall health. Nutrients like omega-3 fatty acids, lutein, zinc, and vitamins C and E may help you maintain healthy vision as you age. These nutrients are found in many common foods like leafy green vegetables, salmon, tuna, eggs, nuts, beans, citrus fruits, and many more.
Premium nutritional supplements can also add extra vision-supporting nutrition to your diet.
- Limit Your Screen Time
Screens surround us. Televisions, computers, smartphones—all of these devices are part of daily life, but they can create or exacerbate eye health issues if overused.
Eye strain, blurry vision, dry eyes, trouble focusing on distant objects, and headaches are all signs of too much screen time. But if using a computer is vital, take an “eyesight break” every 20 minutes. And take a 15-minute break every two hours to stand up, stretch, and pull your eyes away from the screen.
At home, limit the time you spend in front of your TV or on your smartphone. Instead, go for a walk, call or visit a friend, or listen to an audiobook (reading can also cause eye strain). Give your eyes plenty of time to rest.
- Wear Sunglasses
Few things feel better than spending time in the sun. But high amounts of sun exposure can be unhealthy. The sun’s ultraviolet (UV) rays can cause oxidative damage to your skin—and your eyes. In large quantities, UV rays may increase your chance of developing cataracts or macular degeneration.
Luckily, there are simple solutions. Wear sunglasses to block UVA and UVB rays, or wear a wide-brim hat and limit your time in direct sunlight.
- Exercise Regularly
Studies suggest regular exercise can reduce the risk of macular degeneration as you age. So movement is not only good for your overall health, but specifically your eye health.
Stick to a daily exercise habit. It doesn’t have to be complicated—simply find an activity you enjoy. Go for a morning walk or jog, do push-ups or sit-ups while you watch TV, or pick up a new hobby to get you moving outdoors.
- Don’t Smoke
If you smoke, put out the cigarette. Abundant medical research shows how smoking can damage your eye health. It’s a daunting proposition for those who’ve tried to quit, but keep at it and ask your doctor for help.
Your eyes are your connection to the world around you—and experiencing new things and enjoying the activities you love make your eyes worth caring for. So take these steps to heart and immerse them into your daily lifestyle.
Care for your senses and they’ll care for you.
Born and raised in Utah, Taylor Pulver grew up fishing, camping, and hiking his way through the Wasatch Range. Now, he lives in Salt Lake City as a writer, gardener, and avid reader of fantasy and science fiction novels.
Image Source: BigStockPhoto.com (Licensed)
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