Visual Impairment - Keeping your eyes healthy (Top 10 Tips)
You can do several things to keep your eyes as healthy as possible:
1. Have regular eye tests
Have regular eye tests every two years (or sooner if advised by your optometrist (optician)).
This will check your eyes for signs of vision loss and the health of your eyes as well as for some other health conditions too.
2. Wear prescribed glasses/contact lenses
Wearing the correct glasses and/or contact lenses will help your eyes work more efficiently.
3. Eat well
Eating a healthy, balanced diet is important for your eyes. Eating plenty of vegetables and fruit will benefit your overall health and may help protect against some conditions such as cataracts and age-related macular degeneration (AMD).
4. Wear sunglasses
Strong sunlight can damage your eyes and may increase your risk of cataracts. Wear sunglasses or contact lenses with a UV filter to protect your eyes from harmful rays.
5. Avoid smoking
Smoking can increase your chances of developing eye conditions such as cataracts and Age Related Macular Degeneration (AMD).
If you smoke, find out how the NHS can help you stop smoking. For help, ask your doctor about this, call the NHS Smoking Helpline on 0300 123 1044 or go to the NHS Smokefree website on: www.nhs.uk/smokefree
6. Stay a healthy weight
Being overweight increases your risk of diabetes, which can lead to sight loss from diabetic retinopathy.
Check if you're a healthy weight and find out how the NHS can help with weight loss. Your doctor can help you work out what’s a healthy weight for you. The NHS Choices website, Live Well section, provides helpful information and includes a BMI (Body Mass Index) healthy weight calculator and an explanation. There is also a section if you need help with weight loss. See the following web links:
7. Use good lighting
To see well, your eyes need roughly three times as much light when you're 60 as they did when you were 20.
Increase the daylight in your home by:
- Keeping windows clean and curtains open.
- Having good electric lighting so you can see clearly, especially at the top and bottom of stairs for seeing the steps.
- For reading or close work, use a direct light from a flexible table lamp, positioned to avoid glare.
Good circulation and oxygen intake are important for your eye health. Both of these are stimulated by regular exercise.
9. Sleep well
As you sleep, your eyes are continuously moistened and irritants such as dust or smoke that may have accumulated during the day are removed.
10. Don’t Gamble With Your Eyes
Any worsening in your sight should be checked by an optometrist (optician). It's important not to wait for things to get even worse.
Visual Impairment (Low Vision)