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How You Can Support Your Eye Health

How You Can Support Your Eye Health

We live in a digital world where we spend much of our time staring at phones, televisions, and computers. When we do give our eyes natural light, we might forget how the sun’s rays can affect eyes over time. 

If you don’t take care of your eyes, your worries might run deeper than fine lines and wrinkles. You should have your eyes examined at least once every year to ensure your eye health and your overall health. 

Stephen Khachikian, MD, leads our ophthalmology team at Black Hills Regional Eye Institute in Rapid City, South Dakota, where he screens our patients for diseases and complications that affect the eyes. 

The importance of caring for your eyes

Caring for your eyes is about more than just protecting your vision. Your eyes may show warning signs of new or worsening conditions. Chronic conditions like diabetes and hypertension can affect the health of your eyes. 

If you’re living with a chronic condition, we work with your primary care doctor to keep your eyes in healthy working order. 

How to protect your vision

We’re here to help you with any questions that you may have about maintaining the health of your eyes, but managing your daily eye health can be a challenge. Here are some ways that you can protect your eyes:

Wear a hat and sunglasses

As tough as the sun is on your skin, it’s even harder on your vision. Exposing your eyes to UV rays dramatically raises your risk of developing several conditions, among them unusual growths, eye cancers, and sunburned eyes.  

Wear a hat to keep the sun out of your eyes and protect your skin, too. 

Eat a balanced diet

Omega-3 fatty acids rose to popularity as a supplement in the early 2000s. They contain benefits for your skin, hair, joints, and eyes. 

Dark, leafy greens are essential sources of lutein and zeaxanthin, two eye-protecting antioxidants. Lutein and zeaxanthin are thought to protect your eyes from the sun’s UV light. Zinc, copper, and vitamin B1 are also important for your eye health. 

Carefully monitor screen time

Limiting your screen time is one of the best things that you can do for your long-term eye health. Your blinking tends to slow down when you stare at a screen, compromising the moisture levels in your eyes. 

Try to consciously blink more often while you’re using your screens, and take a screen break at least every 20 minutes. 

Use eye-safe makeup

Makeup may be a key element of your beauty routine, but to protect your eyes, you need to apply and wear it safely. Change your eye makeup every three months. Wash your makeup brushes and sponges daily, and don’t use a sponge for longer than three months. 

If you develop an eye infection, throw away all of your eye makeup, and don’t use any until the infection is gone. 

Quit smoking

Nicotine is behind many of the preventable deaths in the United States, including conditions caused by secondhand smoke. Incidentally, few things raise your risk of developing cataracts quite like smoking. 

Smoking can damage your optic nerve and also raises your risk of macular degeneration, which leads to vision loss. 

Good eye health starts today

Your eyes are not only the windows to your soul, but the windows to your health. If you’re developing an eye condition, like glaucoma, or if your eyes have sustained damage, it could be a sign of an underlying condition. 

Good vision starts with good habits, and an eye exam is the first step to a healthy future. Call us for a consultation today, or book one online today.

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