Besides wearing appropriate specialized eyewear for your favorite activities, and sunglasses with complete ultraviolet protection to keep your eyes safe from the sun’s damaging rays, what else can you do to keep your eyes healthy? Let’s look at a few useful tips to help keep your eyes protected and ensure that they stay in top form:
Sunglasses, Goggles, Hats and Other Protective Gear
We’ve said it several times now, but hey, this is really important. Ultraviolet radiation doesn’t just come from the sun–it is also reflected off surfaces such as water or sand. You must consistently wear sunglasses with 100-percent protection against both UVA and UVB rays, even on cloudy days. Not doing so can cause the development of cataracts or skin cancer of the eyelids. Wearing hats and other such protection from the sun will also be well-advised. Consistent use of hats and sunglasses can significantly decrease your UVR exposure.
When you go swimming, wear goggles. Chlorine, which is added to pool water to protect you from exposure to germs, can harm your eyes. Even when you go swimming in the ocean or in other natural bodies of water, wear goggles to keep your eyes protected against other contaminants that may hurt your eyes.
Frequent exposure to chlorine affects your corneal epithelium, increasing your likelihood of corneal abrasion or other eye injuries.
Wash Hands and Avoid Rubbing Your Eyes
The best way to prevent the spread of communicable disease is to wash your hands regularly. This helps you avoid eye-related conditions such as conjunctivitis, which usually develops when you touch something that someone else has touched after they’ve rubbed their eyes.
Keep Yourself Protected Against Chemicals
Even in our own homes, we can sustain chemical burns from liquids we may think of as harmless, such as:
- Hand or body soap bubbles that pop near your eyes
- Spray paint that blows back into your face
- Splashing cleaning solutions
When working with any kind of toxic chemicals, especially at home, take appropriate precautions such as wearing protective goggles or eyewear. Handle solutions carefully, and avoid splashing.
Protect Your Kids while Young
The World Health Organization says 80 percent of a person’s lifetime UVR exposure occurs before they turn 18. Why so? Children are more likely to spend time playing outside. As it is for adults, you should apply regular sunscreen, particularly on your child’s face. Add a hat with a wide brim and comfortable sunglasses.
Wear Eye Protection Outdoors
Protect yourself from contact with foreign bodies that can cause abrasions to your eyes. Activities like woodworking or yard work can bring a higher risk of long-term injury, so make sure to use glasses or other personal protective equipment to shield your face and eyes from potential damage.
Eat Healthy and Drink Plenty of Water
Improve your eyesight and help prevent the development of long-term vision problems by eating right. Foods high in Vitamin C, Vitamin E and zinc, for instance, can help slow or prevent the progression of symptoms of age-related macular degeneration. Drink plenty of water to prevent and reverse many of the negative effects of dehydration, as well as provide fluid for normal eye function. Lutein and zeaxanthin, both antioxidants, can help resist macular degeneration and cataracts.
Get Enough Sleep
You already know that a good night’s rest is important. Your eyes are counting on it. The best way to keep yourself alert and safe is to aim for a full night of sleep every night.
Take a proactive approach to eye care, so you can minimize the amount of time you need professional eye care. When dealing with eye problems, however, do actively seek the help of professional eye health professionals as quickly as possible.
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