How Can I Protect My Retinal Health?
A healthy lifestyle is multi-faceted. In order to maintain your health, a balanced diet and regular exercise are essential, as they support both your physical and mental health. However, even the healthiest person can tend to neglect their eyes. When it comes to your vision, the earlier you start the better, as your vision begins to decline naturally as you age.
Your retina is a layer of nerves in the back of the eye and is a crucial part of your sight. A healthy retina means healthy vision, and there are a number of habits you can develop in order to keep your eyes at peak performance.
Get regular eye exams
There is no substitute for a dilated exam from your eye doctor. If you can’t remember the last time you saw your eye doctor, it may be time for a comprehensive eye exam. Regular visits mean regular eye maintenance, and your doctor may be able to catch early signs of retinal disease before you even notice the symptoms.
There is a multitude of reasons to quit smoking and keeping your vision intact is one of them. Studies have shown that smokers can be twice as likely as non-smokers to develop age-related macular degeneration (AMD), a disease that affects the retina’s central vision capabilities. Quitting smoking can potentially help curb the symptoms and protect your retina from cellular damage.
Protect your eyes from UV light
It’s always important to keep yourself shielded from the sun’s harmful rays and your eyes are no exception. Extended exposure to UV rays from the sun or even tanning beds can cause a “sunburn” on your eyes. When shopping for sunglasses, be sure you’re looking for a pair that provides 100% UV protection from all UV light. Umbrellas and hats with wide brims that provide shade will also provide relief from the sun.
Eat eye-healthy foods
Maintaining a balanced diet will benefit your overall health, but your eyes in particular will thank you. Avoiding starchy and sugary foods, for example, can help stabilize your blood sugar, and decrease your risk for diabetes, which can cause visual damage.
A well-balanced diet with plenty of A, C, and E vitamins helps support healthy eyes. Legumes, eggs, and fish all contain omega-3 fatty acids, which can help to improve your visual health. Seeds such as hemp and chia also benefit your vision, as they are rich in vitamin E. Be sure to incorporate plenty of greens such as kale, broccoli, and Brussels sprouts in your diet, all of which contain antioxidants. This protects your eyes from free radicals, which break down healthy tissue.
Questions about your vision? Reach out to Vitreoretinal Consultants of NY today. Our experts provide quality, comprehensive retinal care and would love to start you on your journey toward healthy, happy eyes.