Useful tips on keeping your eyes healthy

Danielle Garrett

The eyes enable us to see millions of colours, shapes, sizes and movements so protecting them is imperative.

And Cooper Vision, manufacturer of contact lenses and related products, understands just how important protecting your eyes from harmful elements in the atmosphere is.

The company gives a few tips on how to go the extra mile in protecting your eyes. - Always wear quality sunglasses when going outdoors. - If working or spending time outside wear a hat or cap with a wide brim, and take regular breaks in the shade. - Never stare directly into the sun.

According to Cooper Vision, it is also of utmost importance to protect your eyes from an additional strain in your home or office.

“Overworked eyes are prone to short- and long-term eye and vision problems,” the company says.

To help protect your sight and keep healthy eyes, minimise strain by:
- Taking breaks during computer work. Try to take a 15-minute break away from your computer every two hours.
- Provide yourself with good lighting. Your eyes need sufficient light to read and write, work on the computer or watch TV.
- Blink often to refresh and moisten your eyes.
- Get the appropriate eyewear. If you wear glasses or contacts, always make sure your correction is still right for your eyes and for the type of work you do.
- Maintain good air quality. Keep dry eyes at bay and improve your eyesight by using a humidifier, maintaining comfortable temperatures and avoiding pollutants.

“Be smart! Visit your eye doctor periodically and take care of your eyes to keep them healthy,” says Cooper Vision.

Good eye health is also linked to the food on your plate.

Nutrients like omega-3 fatty acids, lutein, zinc, and vitamins C and E might help ward off age-related vision problems like macular degeneration and cataracts. To get them, fill your plate with:

kid smiling
- Green leafy vegetables like spinach, kale, and collards.
- Salmon, tuna, and other oily fish.
- Eggs, nuts, beans, and other nonmeat protein sources.
- Oranges and other citrus fruits or juices.
- Oysters and pork.

A well-balanced diet also helps you stay at a healthy weight.

This lowers your odds of obesity and related diseases like type 2 diabetes, which is the leading cause of blindness in adults.

Another good idea would be to quit smoking.

Smoking makes you more likely to get cataracts, damage to your optic nerve, and macular degeneration, among many other medical problems.

If you have tried to kick the habit before only to start again, keep at it.

The more times you try to quit, the more likely you are to succeed. Ask your doctor for help.

Do not skimp when buying a pair of sunglasses. The right pair of shades will help protect your eyes from the sun’s ultraviolet (UV) rays. Too much UV exposure boosts your chances of cataracts and macular degeneration.

Choose a pair that blocks 99% to 100% of UVA and UVB rays. Wrap-around lenses help protect your eyes from the side. Polarized lenses reduce glare while you drive.

If you use hazardous or airborne materials on the job or at home, wear safety glasses or protective goggles.

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