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You only get one pair of eyes in your life, so take care of them now. These six easy tips for good eye health will go a long way toward maintaining proper vision throughout your life.

Wear sunglasses. It’s important to protect your eyes from damaging UV rays not only during summer but also year-round—especially if your eye color is blue or falls in the lighter spectrum. A habit of not protecting your eyes from the sun can eventually result in cataracts and macular degeneration. Vision damage from ultra-violet rays is irreversible. So, don’t take a risk. If you have to squint, you should be wearing shades.

Quit smoking. Smokers are more likely to suffer from cataracts later in life as well as macular degeneration and damage to the optic nerve—not to mention lung cancer, heart disease, and other potentially deadly conditions. The sooner you stop smoking, the better.

Eat the right foods. Of course, you should always eat healthy, but there are certain foods that are known to help maintain your good vision. A vitamin deficiency can harm your eye function. So, a good variety of vegetables—especially leafy greens—should be an important part of your daily diet. Research has shown that people who consume higher amounts of vitamins C and E, zinc, lutein, zeaxanthin, and the omega-3 fatty acids DHA and EPA are less likely to develop early and/or advanced age-related macular degeneration.

To help maintain good eye health, try including these foods in your regular diet.

  • Blueberries
  • Pistachios
  • Salmon, tuna, oily fish
  • Eggs
  • Almonds
  • Dairy
  • Kale, spinach, collards
  • Carrots
  • Oranges
  • Orange and citrus juices
  • Oysters
  • Pork
  • Beans
  • Non-meat proteins

Wear eye protection. Most eye accidents happen while playing sports or while at home. If you are playing active sports, working with chemicals or anything (even sawdust) that can become a projectile or an irritant, you should always use safety eyewear.

The following sports are notorious for eye injuries and eye-related emergency room visits.

  • Baseball
  • Basketball
  • Ice hockey
  • Racquetball
  • Lacrosse

Limit screen time. We’re all guilty of staring at our phones too long or working for hours at a computer screen. Try to limit your screen time. If you must be looking at a phone or computer screen for any length of time, follow the 20/20/20 rule. Look away every 20 seconds and focus on another object about 20 feet away every 20 minutes.

Too much exposure to blue light can cause a number of eye health issues.

  • Eye strain
  • Headaches, migraines
  • Trouble focusing
  • Blurry vision
  • Neck, back, shoulder pain
  • Dry eyes

Visit your eye doctor regularly. Seeing your eye doctor or optometrist at least once a year is an essential tip for maintaining good eye health. Your optometrist will be able to catch any eye issues early and prescribe a treatment to help avoid vision loss. In addition, your eyes tell a lot more about you than just your eye health. Numerous other health conditions—including new research on Alzheimer’s disease—can be detected first in the eyes before other physical or cognitive symptoms occur.

Call Dr. Fruchtman TODAY to maintain your good eye health.

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