One of the most interesting things that an ophthalmologist or optometrist can tell you is that many people don’t even realize that they could see better before they reach an eye specialist’s office. In some cases, they have a condition that appeared in early childhood so they never enjoyed better eyesight to be able to make a difference. In other cases, their eyesight declined gradually over a long period, so they saw this as a natural effect of aging.
Although many health issues make it incredibly difficult to retrieve or maintain perfect vision, you can still have some control when it comes to protecting your eyesight. Here are three fundamental rules to embrace if you want perfect – or at least near-perfect – vision.
Visiting an ophthalmologist or optometrist regularly for comprehensive eye exams is the best way to spot issues early on. This is especially important because glaucoma and other eye diseases do not come with any noticeable warning signs or symptoms, but they have devastating effects. So, if you don’t remember the last time you took a vision test, schedule an appointment as soon as possible. A vision test will tell you whether you have any issues or whether the issues you already know about have become more advanced, posing new risks to your eye health. Remember that genetics, aging, and environmental factors can stand behind many severe eye problems.
Various statistics suggest that almost half of all adults in the U.S. suffer from refractive eye errors and thus require single vision glasses. What is single vision? It’s a corrective prescription lens for refractive eye errors such as nearsightedness (myopia), farsightedness (hyperopia), and astigmatism. So, the studies show that many people need glasses for perfect vision, yet we are not seeing as many people wearing glasses in society as we should. The cause? Many simply avoid wearing glasses.
If you have to wear glasses but always forget about them or you intentionally leave them at home, try to curb this harmful habit. Not wearing prescription glasses can cause significant eye strain and cause your myopia or astigmatism to advance, especially if you’re prone to excessive screen time. Go back to the optical shop and choose better eyeglass frames that suit you. Knowing you look good with your eyeglasses on will compel you to wear them more often.
UV rays can damage both your skin and your eyes. Excessive sun exposure puts you at risk of developing cataracts or suffering macular degeneration, so it’s crucial to protect your eyes from the sun by wearing sunglasses, on both sunny and cloudy days, in all seasons. You’ll get the most efficient protection from sunglasses that block both UVA and UVB radiation. Aim for 99% to 100% protection when choosing a lens. Although many brands promote polarized lens, these are mostly focused on fighting glare rather than UV protection, so check the labels carefully.
Don’t take your eye health and good eyesight for granted. Without active vision protection, you won’t be able to stave off decline. So, use the tips above to protect your eyes.