Health & Wellness Blog
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Save Your Vision Month - March
Posted by Scott filed under Vision
Regular eye exams are proper eye care should be something everyone does. Our eyes are important, and just like the rest of the body, they need proper to care to be kept in working condition. Improper eye care can lead to eye diseases, which can lead to vision loss. Sponsored by the American Optometric Association, Save Your Vision Month in March is a time meant to remind the public of the importance of caring for their eyes and to urge everyone to get regular eye checkups.
Risk Factors for Certain Eye Problems
Knowing your risk factors for eye problems is a good way to help with prevention. Different eye conditions and diseases have different factors that raise or lower your risk.
Glaucoma Risk Factors
- Age. Glaucoma is more common among the over 60 population.
- Ethnicity. African Americans, Hispanic Americans, and Asian Americans all have a higher risk of developing glaucoma.
- Previous eye injuries
- Being near or far sighted
- Having diabetes or high blood pressure
Cataract Risk Factors
- Age. Older populations are more at risk for developing cataracts.
- High blood pressure
- A family history of cataracts
- Excess alcohol use
Macular Degeneration Risk Factors
- Age. Old age is biggest risk factor for macular degeneration.
- A family history of macular degeneration
- Overexposure to sunlight
Keeping your Eyes Happy and Healthy
One of the most important steps to eye care is getting regular eye exams from a professional. Outside of this, there are other things we can all do to protect our eyesight:
- Maintain a healthy, well balanced diet that includes a variety of fruits and vegetables
- Use protective eyewear when doing sports or activities around the home
- Protect your eyes from sun damage by wearing sunglasses when outside
- Maintain a healthy weight. Being overweight or obesity increases a person’s risk for diabetes, which can raise your risk for certain eye problems, like glaucoma.
- Get regular exercise. Exercise is a good idea for keeping every part of your body healthy, including your eyes. By getting regular exercise, you can help or prevent high cholesterol, high blood pressure, and diabetes, all of which can cause eye problems.
- Know your family history. Try talking to some of your family members about their eye health. Some eye diseases run in families, and it’s best to know your risk beforehand to help with prevention.
- Try not to strain your eyes. A lot of people need to use computers or phones for hours at a time to do their job. It’s unavoidable. However, this can lead to eye strain. To help your eyes, take a break about every twenty minutes by looking away from the screen for about thirty seconds.
- Don’t smoke. If you already don’t smoke, good for you! Your risk for eye diseases is that much lower. But if you do smoke, or if you live with someone who does, your risk for age related eye diseases are higher. For tips on how to quit, visit the American Lung Association here: https://www.lung.org/stop-smoking/i-want-to-quit/
Note: Information in this post is provided for information and education purposes and in not meant to replace guidance from a licensed healthcare provider. If you have any questions or concerns about your health, please contact your regular provider.
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Delgato, Amanda. Nelson, Jennifer. (2016). “Cataract.” Retrieved from: https://www.healthline.com/health/cataract#risk-factors
Personalized Cause. “Save You Vision Month.” Retrieved from: https://www.personalizedcause.com/health-awareness-cause-calendar/save-your-vision-month
American Lung Association. “I Want to Quit Smoking.” Retrieved from: https://www.lung.org/stop-smoking/i-want-to-quit/
National Eye Institute. “Eye Health Tips.” Retrieved from: https://nei.nih.gov/healthyeyes/eyehealthtips
Medline Plus. “Eye Care.” Retrieved from: https://medlineplus.gov/eyecare.html
Boyd, Kierstan. (2018). “Who Is At Risk For Glaucoma?” Retrieved from: https://www.aao.org/eye-health/diseases/glaucoma-risk
Mogk, Lylas G. “Risk Factors for Age-Related Mascular Degeneration.” Retrieved from: http://www.visionaware.org/info/your-eye-condition/age-related-macular-degeneration-amd/risk-factors-for-amd/125