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Save Your Vision Month

Save Your Vision Month 2013 reminds us all to begin practicing healthier vision habits, and according to the American Optometric Association, March is Save Your Vision Month.

This article offers helpful tips on maintaining eye health, like maintaining eye health, protecting our eyes, proper nutrition for your eyes, and scheduling regular eye exams.  The best way to maintain good vision, at any age, is with early detection and treatment.

Save Your Vision Month – 13 Tips For Eye Health

As you’ll see with these recommendations, some eye care tips differ with age.

1.  Parents need to schedule routine eye exams for children, starting at 6 months.  Additionally, parents need to watch for signs of vision problems, like constant rubbing, squinting, crossed eyes, and difficulty seeing at a distance.  If any eye problems are suspected, parents should take the child to an eye doctor immediately.

2.  After the initial exam, parents should schedule eye exams for their children at 3 years old and then at 5 years old.  Thereafter, an eye exam should be scheduled every year.

3.  Young adults between ages 20 and 30, in addition to getting annual eye exams, can protect their eyes by taking certain proactive steps.  These include wearing polarized sun glasses to protect eyes from harmful UV rays and eating nutritious foods, including spinach, broccoli and green beans.  Dark, leafy greens contain large amounts of nutrients, like zeaxanthin and lutein.

4.  Nutrition plays an essential role in maintaining eye health. Per some two decades of extensive research, there is a strong correlation between prevention of age-related eye diseases and good nutrition. Specifically, the nutrients that have been identified as helping to promote eye health and protect eye sight are:  essential fatty acids, the antioxidants, zeaxanthin and lutein, vitamins E and C, and the mineral, zinc.

5.  Bad at any age, smoking exposes the eyes to harmful chemicals, and it increases the risk of cataracts and age-related, macular degeneration later in life.

6.  Around 40, people start noticing changes in their vision.  The usual complaint is presbyopia, or difficulty seeing small print while doing near work on computers or while reading.  Other changes that may occur include dry eye, problems seeing at night, and sensitivity to glare.  Also, conditions like high blood pressure and diabetes, as well as certain medications have ocular side effects.  These conditions, any medications, and family history of conditions should be brought to the attention of an eye doctor during the eye exam.

7.  After age 60, it is vital that patients have an eye doctor check for signs of cataracts, glaucoma, or AMD (age-related macular degeneration) because these conditions can develop without any early symptoms.  Your eye doctor may recommend scheduling checkups more frequently if family history or risk factors warrant it.

8.  Computer users frequently report vision and eye problems.  As a matter of fact, symptoms related to computer use are the leading reason that patients make eye appointments.  According to the American Optometric Association (AOA), computer vision syndrome refers to the vision and eye problems during computer use, related to near work.  Computer users should tell their eye doctor about the type of work and amount of work they do on the computer.  Your daily lenses may not be best for computer work.  An eye doctor can prescribe glasses designed to make computer work more comfortable.

The AOA recommends the 20-20-20 rule for computer users–that is every 20 minutes, take a break for 20-second break by looking at something 20 ft. away.

9.  Wearing safety eye wear can save your vision.  Ninety percent of eye accidents are preventable, according to Prevent Blindness America.  Eye accidents in the home are the fastest-growing source of eye injuries.  Another source of eye accidents is school sports.  Eye safety goggles and glasses are available in prescriptions to replace your contacts or glasses for safety.

10. When trauma or injury to the eye occurs, do not apply pressure to the eye.  Cover the eye with a plastic or metal shield or half a paper cup and seek medical attention immediately.

11. If the eye is burned with a chemical, it is imperative that the eye be flushed for 15 to 20 minutes with contact lens rinsing solution, a sterile saline solution, or clean tap water.  Then seek medical care.

12. If a foreign body gets into your eye, do not rub because that can lodge the particular deeper into the cornea.  It is important to irrigate the eye, as described above.  If that doesn’t remove the particular, seek medical care.

13. If you experience any loss of vision, this may be due to a retinal detachment. This is often preceded by floaters (squiggles or dots) or flashing lights in the visual field.  These occur when the retina painlessly detaches from the back of the eye.  A retinal specialists should be seen immediately because these detachments can usually be repaired with surgery or lasers if done promptly.

Painless vision loss may also be caused by occlusions in the arteries or veins of the retina.  These should be diagnosed quickly, but may not be treatable.

Another potential cause of vision loss is glaucoma.  A glaucoma attack is typically accompanied by a headache, pain around the eye, or nausea and vomiting.  If this is not treated quickly it can lead to permanent loss of vision.

Save Your Vision Month 2013 – Follow Tips For Better Quality of Life

Vision plays a crucial role in countless aspects of our daily lives.  We are fortunate that eye care is more effective and innovative than ever before as a result of the advanced, less invasive technologies available today.

Following the Save Your Vision Month tips in the article above can help you have a better quality of life.

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