Did you know that, according to the CDC, over 11 million Americans over the age of 12 could have better vision if they used corrective eyewear? And approximately 12 million U.S. citizens over the age of 40 currently have vision impairment. Vision loss can have significant social and economic consequences including loss of productivity and decreased quality of life.
Keeping your eyes healthy is essential for your overall health, as changes to your vision and to the physical appearance of your eye can indicate underlying health issues. Here at Visibly, we’ve partnered with Pair Eyewear for Healthy Vision Month this May to bring you 4 tips from Dr. Karen Dorman, OD to keep your eyes healthy and performing the best that they can all year around!
1. Ensure your vision prescription is up-to-date
Is it important to renew your vision prescription, as recommended by your eye doctor, so that you can continue seeing properly. Having an updated prescription for your glasses or contact lenses ensures that your eyes are performing as they should.
Did you know that you can renew your vision prescription from home?
Use Visibly’s online vision test and you’ll have an updated prescription within 24 hours! Use code HEALTHYVISIONMONTH for a $20 vision test.
Our doctors also recommend that all patients receive a comprehensive, in-person eye exam regularly to check the health of the eyes. Many underlying health issues such as diabetes and high blood pressure can be found during an eye exam. Find a doctor near you today!
For more tips on how to keep your eyes in good shape, check out our blog post: 5 Tips to Reduce Eye Strain and Eliminate Screen Fatigue
2. Suns out, shades on!
Raise your hand if you remember your parents telling you over and over (and over) how important it is to apply sunscreen when spending time outdoors. Well, it’s no different with your eyes! As summer is upon us and the sun is starting to shine more throughout the day, it is important to keep our eyes protected by wearing sunglasses. When choosing your preferred pair, Piedmont Healthcare advises to keep the following characteristics in mind:
- UV protection: Sunglasses should have 100 percent protection from UVB rays and UVA rays. If the sunglasses you wear have no UV protection, you may be doing more harm than good to your eyes. When wearing dark lenses without UV protection, your pupils naturally dilate, letting more sunlight in and potentially harming your eyes because of the lack of UV protection. Be sure to always make sure that your sunglasses have protection from both UVB and UVA rays!
- Size of the frames: The frames should fit close to your face and the larger they are, the more protection you have when wearing them.
- Color of the lenses: UV protection on sunglass lenses is actually clear in color, so whether you choose to wear dark-colored lenses or light-colored lenses sunglasses is up to you! This blog post by Piedmont Healthcare provides good insight into how the color of your eyes can affect sensitivity to sunlight, thus affecting the choice you make. Grey is the most neutral color and won’t affect your color perception.
3. Eat those greens
Eating healthy foods and vegetables will keep your eyes (and entire body!) feeling great. According to Healthline, here are a few nutrients to be sure you include in your diet:
- Vitamin A: Suggested eats: egg yolks, liver, and dairy products
- Lutein and Zeaxanthin: Suggested eats: spinach, broccoli, kale, and pistachios
- Omega-3 Fatty Acids: Oily fish, like salmon
- Vitamin C: Citrus fruits, like oranges
4. Follow the 20-20-20 rule
A simple, at-home exercise to give your eyes some rest is the 20-20-20 rule: Every 20 minutes, gaze at something 20 feet from you for 20 seconds. Our eyes experience strain when we look at our computers, TVs, and smartphones for too long and this quick exercise helps to change your focus and keep your eyes flexible.
Do you have other tips to keep your eyes healthy? Let us know in the comments for a chance to be featured on our social media channels! And, be sure to follow along all month for giveaways and other happenings for Healthy Vision Month!
Dr. Karen Dorman
Dr. Karen Dorman is a Doctor of Optometry who was in private practice on Long Island, NY for 40 years. She was also an Adjunct Associate Professor of Biology at St. John’s University in Queens, NY. She received a BA in biology from Albany State University and her OD degree from New York College of Optometry in NYC. She is currently consulting and mentoring virtually due to the ongoing pandemic.