Vision is one of our most important senses. Here are a few tips to maintain the health of our eyes as we get older:
- Wear sunglasses outside. Excessive exposure to UV light will speed up the aging process of our eyes through increased oxidation. UV light is responsible for the progression of cataracts (clouding of the lens inside the eye) and development and progression of macular degeneration (degeneration of the central part of the retina).
- Kick your tobacco habit. Smoking and vaping also increases the level of oxidants in our body. Any effort to stop smoking is paramount not only for our general health, but also for the health of our eyes. Also eating more green, leafy vegetables is recommend, since they contain a high amount of anti-oxidants.
- Get an eye exam. Eye exams are recommended at the same frequency as general physicals. Twice during the second decade of life, three times during the third decade, and so on. After age 60 an annual check-up should be performed. During these exams physicians can look for signs of cataracts and glaucoma.
Cataracts are the most common cause of decreased vision world-wide. Macular degeneration is the leading cause of blindness in the developing world in individuals age 55 and older.
Glaucoma (elevated eye pressure) is the second leading cause of blindness. Unfortunately, vision loss from glaucoma is irreversible. As a result, it is important to detect glaucoma as early as possible, so it can be treated. Glaucoma runs in families and the incidence is increased in African-Americans.
For more information or to schedule an appointment with UofL Physicians – Eye Specialists, contact us at 502 588-0550.