Eye Safety Should Be a Priority in 2020
We are finally in 2020, which means millions of people have taken this time to set New Year’s Resolutions for themselves. The goal of these resolutions is to make changes in your life for the better. Many people hope to achieve goals that they’ve always strived for, whether personal or professional. While the majority of people will make weight loss, exercising, or reading more their goals, the team at First Eye Care McKinney would like to encourage you to make eye safety a priority in 2020.
Your eyes are extremely complicated organs, yet they are also very sensitive. Your eyes are constantly in danger of injury or disease, regardless of who you are. As you grow older, your vision will begin to fade. While that is inevitable, what you can control is making sure your vision and eyes remain healthy for as long as possible.
From vision-threatening eye conditions to UV rays and foreign objects, your eyes are constantly at risk. You must be proactive and protect your eyes to ensure your vision and eye health remain in good shape. Today, we are going to be providing you with helpful tips to protect your eyes in 2020.
Common Eye Threats
As we’ve touched on briefly, many threats can harm your eyes. In the year 2020, enough knowledge has been gathered to help you best protect your eyes. Before we touch on helpful tips on how to protect your eyes, we are going to focus on some of the most common eye threats:
- Eye Diseases: Unfortunately, eye diseases and conditions are very common. Many of these conditions are genetic, so knowing your family history is crucial. Conditions such as glaucoma, age-related macular degeneration, cataracts, diabetic retinopathy, and more threaten the health of your eyes and your vision.
- UV Rays: Yes, we know how amazing and fun it can be to spend the day out in the sun, but are you aware of how dangerous the sun’s UV rays are for your eyes? They target your eye’s central vision by attacking the macula. UV rays can lead to many conditions we just discussed.
- Foreign Objects: Whether you play sports, work in construction, or are completing chores at home, countless foreign objects can strike your eyes and cause damage. A speeding ball can hit you in the eye, or metal shaving can lodge themselves in your eyes. Some objects cause only minor discomfort, while some completely endanger your eye.
- Computer Screens: In today’s world, we spend the majority of our lives planted in front of a screen. Unfortunately, digital screens emit harmful blue light that can lead to an eye condition called computer vision syndrome, also referred to as digital eye strain. Those with this condition will experience eye strain and fatigue, dry eye, headaches, and more. Whether through computers, smartphones, virtual reality headsets, or more, screens and their blue light threaten your eyes.
Protecting Your Eyes
Now that we have briefly discussed some of the most common threats to your eyes, it’s time to focus on some of the best ways you can protect your eyes in 2020. Because there are so many different ways that your eyes can suffer damage, you have to be proactive. Some of the best ways you can protect your eyes include:
As we have already mentioned, the sun’s UV rays are extremely dangerous to your eyes. UV rays can be broken up into two categories: UV-A rays and UV-B rays. UV-A rays are what attack your central vision by damaging your macula. UV-B rays are typically absorbed by your cornea and lens, but they have the potential to cause more damage than UV-A rays.
The best way to protect yourself from these rays is by wearing UV blocking sunglasses. Make sure the sunglasses you purchase have 100% UV protection. Even glasses with dark tint don’t offer complete UV protection. Investing in good sunglasses can save you a lifetime of trouble.
Eating a Healthy Diet
While it’s well-known that a nutritionally balanced diet provides you with countless health benefits, a healthy diet can also help protect your vision. There are plenty of vision healthy foods that can help you fight against dangerous eye diseases. Some of these foods include:
- Dark leafy greens
- Nuts, legumes, and seeds
- And more
By eating well, you not only get to enjoy good health, but it also provides you with healthy eyes.
Virtually everyone knows smoking cigarettes is bad for your health, leading to numerous different forms of cancer. However, it is also just as bad for your eyes and eyesight. Smoking has been directly linked to the development of age-related macular degeneration and other dangerous eye diseases. Quitting smoking protects your entire body, including your eyes.
Wearing Proper Eye Protection
Each year sees nearly 2.5 million eye injuries, including 50,000 people permanently losing part or all of their vision. These eye injuries can occur because of a handful of reasons. Whether you are playing a sport with speeding balls flying past you, you work in construction, or you are completing home projects, you are always in danger of a foreign object flying up and damaging your eye. While not every case is necessarily vision-threatening, it’s still important to take initiative in protecting your eyes.
Wear protective sports goggles or ANSI-approved protective eyewear whenever you are completing home repairs or gardening. Contact your eye doctor to learn more about protective eyewear.
Implementing the 20-20-20 Rule
As we stated before, our world is dominated by screens. The average person spends roughly seven hours a day in front of a screen. We use them for work, school, shopping, communication, and much more. However, spending all this time in front of screens can be dangerous.
A good practice to protect your eyes is to follow the 20-20-20 rule. Simply look away from the screen in front of you, such as a computer monitor, smartphone, VR headset, or tablet, every 20 minutes. Stare at an object 20 feet away for 20 seconds. This will help give your eyes a rest. You can also invest in blue light glasses that filter blue light emitted from your screen.
Scheduling Regular Eye Exams
Unfortunately, most common eye diseases have no early signs or symptoms, which means you won’t notice the condition until it has already progressed. That is why it is so important to regularly schedule a comprehensive eye exam. These exams allow your eye doctor to monitor your current eye health, ensuring no diseases have emerged.
They will review your family history to learn what disease you’re most at risk of, determining how often you should have an eye exam. Early detection is crucial in protecting your eyes. It allows you to treat a condition and minimize its effects on your eyes. Eye exams remain the best way to protect your eyes in 2020. If you wish to schedule your next eye exam or simply want to learn more ways to protect your eyes, contact First Eye Care McKinney today.