Do you have some bad habits you know you should kick because they harm your body? What you may not realize is that some of those same habits are bad for your eyes.
How long has it been since you’ve had an eye exam? Dr. Stephen Khachikian, a board-certified ophthalmologist based in Rapid City, South Dakota, is the expert to see to help you maintain your eye health as you grow older. He explains how important healthy habits are when it comes to your eye health.
Following are four bad habits to break if you want to maintain good eye health when you’re older.
Stop going outside without UV protective sunglasses
Do you love the sun so much that you don’t wear sunglasses at the pool or beach? Maybe you don’t want “raccoon eyes.”
But you should know that wearing sunglasses is critical to protect your eyes from harmful UVA and UVB rays. The sun is a carcinogen, even though short doses of it are good for producing vitamin D in your body.
Invest in a good pair of sunglasses with protection from the sun’s harmful ultraviolet rays today. Hours in the sun multiplied by days and years equals a real danger of cataracts, eye cancer, and macular degeneration down the road.
A 2020 study concludes that if you’re obese, your risk for cataracts increases. A 2019 study provides evidence that there’s a correlation between obesity and retinopathy as well as glaucoma.
Maintaining a healthy weight puts less stress on your body’s systems, including the blood vessels in your eyes. Do your body and eyes a favor. Sign up for a medically supervised weight loss program if you’re in a failure cycle when trying to lose weight.
Stop being a couch potato
There’s a reason to get up off the couch. Not only does exercising help you lose weight, but it also protects your health, including your eye health.
You’ve probably heard some statistics about the role exercise plays in heart health, but you may not know that exercising at least 150 minutes per week also lowers your risk of glaucoma by 50%. You’ll have more energy and enjoy many other health benefits from regular exercise, too.
Smoking is deleterious to your overall health; many studies show that smoking causes serious diseases including cancer, heart disease, lung disease, and COPD. If you continue to smoke, you have up to four times the risk of age-related macular degeneration than someone who doesn’t smoke. It takes up to 20 years after you stop to lower your risk substantially.
For the best in ophthalmology care, call the office of Dr. Stephen Khachikian or book an appointment online today. He wants to help you ensure your long term eye health.