Taking your eye health seriously

WELL-BEING: Maintaining eye health when you're young is critical to ensure the preservation of your vision into old age. Photo: Shutterstock.
WELL-BEING: Maintaining eye health when you're young is critical to ensure the preservation of your vision into old age. Photo: Shutterstock.

Talking about eye health can often be one of those conversations we prefer to put on the back-burner.

But when it comes to eye care, it's important that you take the time to do it properly.

This year, Optometry Australia will be releasing the Vision Index Report which surveyed people across the nation about their approach to and their attitudes and habits with regard to their eye health.

The report will cover topics such as glasses, contact lenses, eye conditions, disease, nutrition, workplace, driving, sport and digital behaviour and how each of these affect or improve our eye health.

Declaring 2020 as the 'Year of Good Vision for Life', Optometry Australia will be asking everyone to join the social media campaign #LookCloser and think about their eye health by encouraging them to have their eyes examined by an optometrist.

The country's leading national provider of vision services, recommends visiting your preferred optometrist every second year for a regular eye check-up.

Here are a few things to think about when it comes to your own eye health and taking care of one of the most overlooked organs in the human body.

Slide on some sunnies

Exposing your eyes to ultraviolet (UV) light is a known contributor to cataracts and age-related macular degeneration. Protecting your eyes by sliding on a pair of sunglasses with good UV protection and a hat to reduce UV exposure can be an easy way to ensure you don't cause irreversible damage to your eyes.

BOOK IN: Visiting your optometrist can help them pick up any changes to your eye health. Photo: Shutterstock.

BOOK IN: Visiting your optometrist can help them pick up any changes to your eye health. Photo: Shutterstock.

Visit your optometrist

Heading to your optometrist every two years for people without eye diseases or specific risk factors is recommended. Speak to your eye care professional about what's best for you and if you may need to see them more regularly.

Contact care

If you wear contacts, make sure to always follow the recommended instructions for wear and replacement. Never wear them in the shower or overnight to avoid infection.

Nutrition is key

Your diet can have an unwanted impact on your eye health. Make sure you are eating foods high in Omega 3 fatty acids, antioxidants and vitamins and minerals such as vitamin E and Zinc. Combined with exercise, this can help to prevent macular degeneration and diabetes in some people - a leading cause of vision loss.

Protection

Protective work wear can help prevent unnecessary eye injuries. Always follow safety directions when working with machinery and, if you wear glasses, talk to your optometrist about investing in a pair of prescription safety glasses.

Family first

Younger, older and disabled Australians are at risk of having their poor vision overlooked through either the inability to express themselves or missing regular check-ups.

Reach out to your family members who may be unable to arrange a consultation for themselves.

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