This year, 24th-30th September is National Eye Health Week, so I thought I would write a post on how to look after your eyes, it is very important that we take good care of our eyes, but how many of us actually do this?
This is a bit of a different post for me, but one of the main aims of my blog is to raise awareness of visual impairment so I thought I would address some of the ways in which we can look after our eyes.
I would like to point out that I am not an expert, I have wrote this post to raise awareness on the importance of looking after your eyes, highlight the fact that eye health really matters and shared some tips in order to do this.
According to the RNIB, there are two million people in the UK that live with sight loss (around 1 person in every 30) by 2020, this is expected to rise to over 2,250,000. With that in mind, I’m sure that you will agree with me that it is vital for us to look after our eyes and take good care of them.
Since I started to have problems with my eyes a couple of years ago, I’ve really started to take care of my eyes and make sure that I look after them. Having a visual impairment and being born with a condition called Retinopathy of Prematurity means keeping my eyes healthy is key for me.
I am very sensitive to light, especially the sun, so I always make sure that I carry a pair of sunglasses around with me in case I need them.
One of my eyes is often red, swollen and feels sore which is due to chronic inflammation. This isn’t very nice and can often feel extremely uncomfortable so I am on a few types of eye drops to help control this, however there are other things that I do to ensure that I’m really taking care of my eyes and relieving the symptoms. To do this, I often use a warm compress with warm water, this helps reduce swelling, redness and any feeling of discomfort. I also suffer from dry eye so this also often gets rid of any gritty feeling.
I have an eye mask that I keep in the fridge and often put this over my eyes to try and reduce any symptoms. As well as my prescribed eye drops, I also use an eye mist to help with my dry eye.
After a long day, I sometimes like to make sure my eyes feel nice and refreshed, so I use the Liz Earle EyeBright Soothing Eye Lotion to rejuvenate them.
Those are some of the ways how I look after my eyes, but what can you do?
Smoking can cause many health problems, including increasing the risk of some eye conditions. Tobacco can damage the eye.
You may hear this all the time, but eating healthy can help protect your sight.
Think of your eyes when using a computer
If you spend several hours a day on a computer, remember the 20-20-20 rule: look 20 feet in front of you for 20 seconds every 20 minutes. Also, make sure you blink whilst you’re using a computer, as this helps to keep your eyes moist. Computer screens can make your eyes feel tired, itchy, cause blurred vision, cause headaches and computers can even cause eye strain.
Protect your eyes in the sun
Wear sunglasses when you are exposed to the sun. This can prevent some eye conditions such as cataract. When you are buying some new sunglasses, make sure that they have a CE, British Standard, or UV 400 mark as this means that they have good protection.
Watch your weight
Obesity can put you at higher risk of some eye conditions such as diabetic retinopathy and glaucoma. Leading on from this, doing regular exercise can also help.
Look for changes in your vision.
These may include: double vision, hazy vision, difficulty seeing in low light, red eyes, frequent flashes of light, floaters, and eye pain. If you experience any of these then it is important to speak to an eye specialist.
Have regular eye tests
It is recommended that you should have an eye test every two years, unless you are told otherwise. If you haven’t had an eye test within the last two years then why not book one this national eye health week?
Check the expiration dates on eye make-up
Using out of date eye make-up can cause eye infections so it is important to check the expiration dates on these products to reduce the risk of you developing an eye infection.
There you have it, some tips on how to look after your eyes.
Not all eye conditions can be prevented, but it is very important to look after your eyes. Eye health is just as important as physical or mental health!
Do you have any other tips to share? Feel free to leave them in the comments, I’d love to hear from you.