Tips for eye health

9 out of 10 Australians say that sight is their most valued sense. Here’s just 5 things we can do to keep our eyes healthy and vision sharp.

1. Eat a healthy diet

Foods like green leafy vegetables, fish and linseeds are great sources of anti-oxidants and omega-3 fatty acids. Eating a balanced diet rich in these nutrients as well as vitamins and minerals including C and E, zinc and selenium may prevent or slow down the development of some eye conditions including macular degeneration and help reduce the risk other chronic conditions such as diabetes which may also impact vision.

2. Shield your eyes from UV light

Just like our skin, UV light can have a harmful impact on your eyes and can even contribute to age related macular degeneration and cataracts. Yet 62% of Australians don’t wear sunglasses or a hat.

Choose sunglasses with good UV prescription and wear a hat. For more advice about choosing lenses to protect your eyes from UV light speak to your optometrist.

3. Protect your eyes from hazards

When working outside or with machinery or tools protecting your eyes with safety glasses is important but it’s easy to get complacent. Even mowing the lawn can put your eyes at risk from flying debris so play it safe with protective eyewear.

4. Consider blue light glasses for screen time

Blue light emitted by screens can trick your body into thinking it’s still daytime which may interrupt your ability to have a full night’s sleep or impact your sleep cycle.

We’ve all experienced tired eyes after spending too long on the computer and wearing glasses with a blue light filter is just one way to prevent eye strain and fatigue. Don’t forget to also take regular breaks and shut down screens at least an hour before bed.

5. Have regular eye examinations

Even if you have good vision and aren’t noticing any changes, it’s important to get your eyes checked regularly with an optometrist, it’s recommended we get an eye check biannually. Optometrists can pick up small changes to your eyes even before it impacts your vision so you can slow down or even prevent chronic conditions from developing.

It’s important to get your eyes checked regularly, even if you have good vision and aren’t noticing any changes. It’s recommended we get an eye check with an Optometrist biannually, as they can pick up small changes to your eyes even before it impacts your vision, so you can slow down or prevent chronic conditions from developing.

Don’t forget the kids

Often children will assume what they’re seeing is normal so it can be hard to identify if they’re having issues with their vision. There are signs to watch out for including covering or closing one eye, complaining of headaches, skipping lines when reading and sitting closer than normal to the TV or computer. Regular eye checks are also recommended for kids and it’s a good idea to get their vision tested before they start school. Your doctor and optometrist can also give you tips of what to keep an eye out for.

Wear prescription lenses?

Polarisation and blue light lenses are claimable with selected levels of Phoenix Health extras cover when added to prescription glasses or prescription sunglasses. See our Extras covers and product information sheets to learn more about optical benefits or contact the Phoenix Health Team.

As always, if you have concerns about your vision or eye health, we recommend making an appointment with your optometrist or health care professional.

Sources: Bailey Nelson, Laubman & Pank, Vision 2020 and Vision Australia.

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