The Top 5 Eye Health Tips You Can Follow Every Day

woman making a heart sign with her hands framing her eyes

Did you know that 80% of eye problems are easily preventable and treatable? This means that there are things you can do every day to keep your eyes healthy! Here are the top 5 eye health tips that will keep your eyes happy and healthy, especially when paired with regular visits to your eye care provider.

Tip #1: Protect Yourself from both UVA and UVB Rays

The first and most important tip is to protect yourself from the ultraviolet rays spectrum emitted from the sun and other artificial sources. This spectrum includes, and is not limited to, UVA and UVB rays. UVA and UVB rays are the rays that affect your eyes the most. Though most sunglasses protect against UVA rays, not all of them protect against UVB rays. You will know that a sunglass brand covers both spectrums if they are labelled as UV 400 protection. Now you can even find contact lenses, such as Acuvue Advance Plus, that cover both UVA and UVB rays!

The reason you need to protect your eyes from both UVA and UVB rays is because each one causes different eye problems. UVA exposure can cause cataracts and macular degeneration, while UVB exposure can cause eye problems, such as pinguecula and pterygium.

sunglasses and a hat on lawn

Be especially careful to protect your eyes outdoors mid-day when the UV rays (both UVA and UVB) are the strongest. Also, beware of reflective surfaces such as water, snow, and glass. They can reflect the sun’s UV rays into your eyes. It’s almost as bad as looking directly into the sun. Don’t be fooled by cloud coverage, as the rays can penetrate through them. For extra protection, pair your sunglasses with a wide-brimmed hat.

Other tips for selecting the best sunglasses are:

Be careful in your car or other indoor environments as well, since UV rays can penetrate through windows.

Tip #2: Eat Right

A colorful selection of fruits and vegetables

Eating healthy is essential for good eye health. It is scientifically proven that certain vitamins, minerals, and compounds keep eyes healthy and prevent eye diseases. Here are some suggested vitamins for you to add to your diet:

Unfortunately, eating well does not reverse eye damage. That is why it is essential to start eating healthy as a child and continue this habit through adulthood. If you have not been eating healthy up to this point, starting a supplement program now can protect your eyes from further damage.

Tip #3: Lose Weight

Dumbbell, tape measure, apple and sign for losing weight

Although many general practitioners focus on how obesity affects the heart and blood sugar, eye doctors warn that being overweight can cause eye problems. Studies show that those who are overweight are more likely to:

Talk with your healthcare provider if you need help losing weight. They can provide information on nutritious eating and exercise. As an added benefit, aerobic exercise (the kind that elevates your heartbeat), can slow down vision loss caused by aging.

Tip #4: Stop Smoking

man breaking cigarette in half

You likely know that smoking puts your lungs and heart at risk, but did you know it is detrimental to your eyes! For example, smoking can cause a condition called Uveitis, which is a term that encompasses several inflammatory diseases. Uveitis is a terrible condition that can lead to complete blindness. This condition primarily attacks the middle layer of the eye, the uvea. However, this condition can affect other parts of the eye such as the retina, which is located at the back of the eye. Uveitis inflammatory diseases will cause the retina to detach, resulting in vision loss.

Furthermore, smokers are four times more likely to go blind in old age. Smoking also leads to dry eye condition as well as increases the risk of developing macular degeneration. Cataracts and glaucoma are also common conditions caused by smoking.

Tip #5: Pay Attention to Digital Devices

Man using digital device

The major concern about digital screens is the blue light ray exposure to the eye. Blue light rays are the shortest waves in the electromagnetic spectrum. These rays, when emitted from the sun, are good for us. They give us the most energy during the day, increasing attention span, and boosting our mood. But is constant blue light ray emission from screens directly into our eyes damaging? Some eye professionals say that it is and that it may cause cataracts and retina damage. But others are adamant to say that it doesn’t. However, one thing everyone agrees on is that too much screen time causes eye strain.

You can reduce eye strain by following the 20/20/20 rule. This rule says that you need to stop looking at your digital screen every 20 minutes for at least 20 seconds. Instead of focusing on your screen, focus on something 20 feet away. Reducing screen time altogether is another option.

You may also want to consider doing eye exercises that relieve eye strain. Some exercises will help strengthen your eyes muscles. Others will help relax tired muscles.

Sleep disruption is another concern as a result of too much screen time. When you are absorbing blue light into your eyes at night, your body's natural release of melatonin is inhibited. You may notice that watching television late at night is bearable, but once you turn it off, you can barely stay awake. This is because your body has begun releasing melatonin.

If you are concerned about blue light rays, you can purchase blue light screen filters for all of your digital devices. If you do this, you may find that the screen is more comfortable to look at and eye strain is reduced.

Eye Health Tips Checklist

In addition to following the preceding five tips, here are a few more tips for maintaining excellent eye health:

Following all of these tips will help keep your eyes healthy for years to come.

Shop Contacts