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Gray Skies? You Still Need to Protect Your Eyes!

Gray Skies? You Still Need to Protect Your Eyes

Gray Skies? You Still Need to Protect Your Eyes

 

When the skies are clear and the sun is shining it’s easy to remember to take precautions for your health.  Especially over the summer when we’re out enjoying the sunshine the most. Between sunscreen, hats and layers of clothing that provide UV protection your sunglasses may seem like an easy accessory to remember to wear.  What about spring?  Do you need to bring along eye protection even while the days are cold and gray?  Did you know that you should be wearing eye protection even in the spring when most people wouldn’t expect you should? Learn more about protecting your eyes on sunny days here. Read on to learn more about why you need to protect your eyes – even when it’s gray.

Gray Skies – An Unexpected Risk

In the cool gray days of spring it’s easy forget the habits that keep our skin and eyes safe and healthy during the summer months.  It’s a common thought that overcast skies mean you don’t need to worry about bringing along your sunglasses.  That eye protection is only useful during bright summer months.  Unfortunately most people believe that the harmful UV rays that can cause eye damage are blocked or are filtered out by the cloud cover.  This is a harmful misconception since gray skies don’t act as a barrier or filter for the sun’s powerful UV rays.  In fact if you are at the beach or by water or even surrounded by fresh snow you are exposed to a potentially damaging amount of UV rays to your eyes as well as your skin.

Play It Safe and Protect Your Eyes – Even When It’s Gray

As April Showers cloud the sky preparing to bring on the May Flowers and you find yourself surrounded by sunshine or gray skies take the proper precautions and bring along your sunglasses.  Especially if you plan on being by water or gliding over snow during spring break keep your eye protection handy.  It is just as important to protect your eyes in the spring as it is during summer – don’t fall victim to gray skies the unexpected risk.

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Eye Health for Adults over 60 – Tips and Insight

Tips for Eye Health Over 60

Tips for Eye Health Over 60

We all know that our bodies change after we hit 60: Our eyes are not immune to the aging process. Most of us look into protecting our bodies as we age, but, many do not pause and think about specific ways to protect their eye health. Here are a few tips and insights into how to keep your eyes healthy once you are past 60.

Get Plenty of Sleep

One of the best ways you can protect your eye health as you age (and even when you’re young), is to get enough sleep. Our eyes get lubricated, and cleared of any dust, allergens, smoke, or other irritants. To get the best rest, some research has shown that your eyes need exposure to some natural light during the day, as it affects our wake-sleep cycles.

Get Plenty of Exercise

Exercise is good for our bodies, but it is also specifically beneficial to our eyes. Exercise stimulates good blood circulation, which is important for our eye health. Additionally, exercise keeps our weight regulated, which fights off diseases such as diabetes – and, diabetic retinopathy.

Eye Injuries from Falling

One of the most common ways people injure their eyes is in or around the home, and many are the result of home improvement projects. While this may be worrisome, when you realize that most eye injuries could be prevented by wearing protective eye wear during projects and maintenance, those numbers are less worrisome. Be careful about your potential to fall – make sure railings are secure, rugs are tacked down, and there are no sharp edged protruding from tables or the corners of walls.

Stay Current with Your Eye Doctor for the Best Eye Health

Finally, our last tip for the day: Be sure to stay current with your eye doctor. The sooner you catch many eye diseases, the better. Be sure to go in for a yearly eye exam, and if you notice anything strange with your vision, be sure to make an additional appointment.

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Does Reading Harm Your Eyes? A Closer Look

Does reading harm your eyes?

Does reading harm your eyes?

Bookworms and students alike have often be warned by parents, teachers, and various sources to, “Be careful- reading too much can harm your eyes!”  Does excessive reading harm your eyes and where does that warning come from?  For anyone in the academic world or to the lover of the world of books we’re going to have a look at those claims.   And the results may surprise you!

The Dry Spell

If you’ve ever spent hours pouring over a new book or studying material for an upcoming test you’ve probably experienced the following.  You look up from your book and begin blinking or rubbing your eyes.  Why?  Because they’re itchy, scratchy and uncomfortable.  This is no reason to be alarmed since your eyes typically dry out while you’re reading.  This happens because you tend to blink less while reading causing your eyes to dry out.  Dry eyes are nothing to be alarmed by as you can easily pick up an over the counter eye drop to help soothe occasional dry eyes.  If the problem persists and carries over beyond reading it’s advised that you consult with your doctor.

Too Tired

While dry eyes are a typical result of reading in excess another common side effect is a little harder to diagnose.  Have you ever set your book down because you couldn’t seem to focus on another word?  Has this been accompanied by a dull headache?  Chances are your eyes are too tired or are experiencing fatigue.  If you’ve ever begun a new physical activity like hiking, biking or swimming you’ve likely experienced fatigue in your muscles including soreness.  Just like other muscles, tendons and ligaments your eyes can become fatigued after too much work.  This typically can be remedied by rest.  For more on eye fatigue, reading in dim light have a look at what Richard Gans, MD, FACS, an ophthalmologist with the Cleveland Clinic Cole Eye Institute had to say in this article about reading in dim light.

Does Reading Harm Your Eyes? Read On, Book Lovers!

Bookworms and students can read in peace knowing that reading doesn’t harm your eyes.  The myth that it does is just that, a myth.  And the symptoms that are commonly claimed to be harming your eyes, like dryness and fatigue, can typically be remedied with no long term effects.  Just remember to keep your eyes well lubricated and give your eyes a break if you feel fatigue coming on.  Happy reading!

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Why You Should Drink Coffee: How it Benefits Your Eyes

Why You Should Drink Coffee

Why You Should Drink Coffee

Most Americans are waking up and starting their day with a habit that is benefiting the health of their eyes. Little do they know this daily ritual has been proven to have long term benefits. So, what are they doing on a daily basis that helps prevent eye damage? It’s likely you have some in your cupboard or picked some up in a drive through on your way into work.

Benefits of Coffee

The answer is your daily cup of coffee. Loaded with powerful antioxidants this simple indulgence can have worthwhile benefits beyond providing you with a caffeine boost. Here’s what USA Today says about the health benefits of drinking coffee.

While in general, most people might call your daily habit a vice, you can be rest assured. There’s more to your cup of coffee then a morning buzz or an afternoon pick-me-up. In fact one day you might be prescribed a specific scientist formulated brew to help combat eye damage, according to Medical Daily.

How to Keep it Healthy

Keep in mind to go easy on cream and sugar. Particularly if you’re reaching for an ice blended drink or something so indulgently sweet. If you can’t remotely find the taste of coffee behind the medley of vanilla, chai, mocha topped with whipped creamm you may be outweighing the health benefits. It may take time, however, learning to enjoy coffee in it’s simpler form will give you the best result.

Why You Should Drink Coffee

So the next time you’re pouring yourself your usual cup, or two, of coffee remember to use the cream and sugar in moderation. Your eyes and body will thank you for the antioxidants. Maybe one day your indulgence will be a prescribed as a part of a healthy diet. For now, raise your mug in honor of scientists who continue to research the health benefits linked to coffee and enjoy your caffeine boost.

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3 Tips On How to Avoid Sun Damage to Eyes

How to Avoid Sun Damage to Eyes

How to Avoid Sun Damage to Eyes

We all understand the importance of protecting our skin from the sun: The sun’s UV rays can cause us to burn, and can ultimately cause skin cancer. Because of this, we all wear hats, slather on sunscreen, and try to avoid the sun during the peak hours of the day. But, we don’t often think about the damaging rays and how they are affecting our eyes. In today’s blog post, we’re going to discuss how to avoid sun damage to your eyes so that you can keep them healthy for many years.

1. Avoid Sun Damage to Eyes: Wear the Right Sunglasses and a Hat

Sunglasses don’t do much for you if they’re not the right kind. It’s easy to just pick up cheap sunglasses from a gas station or department store – but they need to have the right kind of protection in order to truly protect your eyes from sun damage. Look for sunglasses labeled with “UV400,” or ones that provide 100% UV protection. Just because your sunglasses are super dark doesn’t mean they block out damaging UV rays. In fact, it’s important to wear sunglasses even on cloudy days, because UV rays go through clouds. Wearing sunglasses helps protect your eyes, but wearing a hat adds an extra layer of protection. They shade your eyes from different angles that sunglasses don’t, meaning you’ll be more protected while outdoors.

2. Avoid Damaging UV Rays: Be Careful While Driving

Driving in the car without proper sunglasses can cause the most damage. Not all car windows block UV rays. The side windows are even less likely to provide protection. Many people get sunburned while driving – their eyes are also being damaged by the sun. Be sure to wear proper UV-blocking sunglasses when you drive and your eyes are exposed to the sun. This is the best way to avoid sun damage to eyes.

3. Check Your Susceptibility to UV Rays: Check Your Medication3.

Many medications make our eyes more susceptible to the sun’s rays. Certain antibiotics, birth control, and others, contain substances that make our eyes more vulnerable to damaging UV rays. Check the labels of your medication, and speak with a doctor to learn if your eyes could be in more danger. Take the proper steps to avoid being out in the sun, or make sure you have the right sunglasses and/or hat to protect your eyes from the sun.

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Remedies for Aching Eyes: A Few Helpful Tips to Get Relief

Remedies for Aching Eyes

Remedies for Aching Eyes

We’ve all experienced it: Eyes that just ache after a long day at work, pain after reading a book, and an overall heaviness you just can’t get rid of. In our quest to find remedies for aching eyes, we came across quite a few helpful tips.

Use Ice-Cubes

Ice cubes can cool your eyes, and improve blood circulation. They also help relax the muscles around your eyes. Simply put some ice cubes in a clean town, and compress it lightly on your tired eyes to get some relief from the achiness.

Potato Slices

If you’re adverse to using ice-cubes, try putting some potato slices in the refrigerator. Place them over your eyes to reduce inflammation. You’ll also get the added benefit of a little shuteye!

Hot Compress

Some pain requires heat for relief. Putting a warm compress on your eyes can provide relief from the achiness by relaxing the muscles around your eyes, soothing dry eyes, and reducing strain. Place a warm towel on your eyelids – refresh it every time it cools.

Chamomile Tea

Sometimes, your aching eyes might be the result of not getting enough sleep. Try drinking some chamomile tea with honey before bed to melt stress away and calm your body before you go to sleep. Getting a good night’s rest will go a long way to relieving your aching eyes!

Use Tea Bags

Tea can be ingested, but it can also be used directly on your eyes. Tea contains bioflavonoids, which fight infections and bacteria. They can also be used warm to soothe your eyes. Use green or black tea for the most benefit.

Use a Chilled Spoon

If you don’t have ice cubes or potatoes handy, put a few spoons in chilled water. Place them over your eyes, and switch them out as they grow warm. This can be a great way to get relief when you’re at work and don’t want to ruin your makeup, but need relief.

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2 Ways to Improve Eye Health Naturally

2 Ways to Improve Eye Health Naturally

2 Ways to Improve Eye Health Naturally

We all take so many medications: It seems that each and every year, another medication is added to our daily routines. Because of this, many people are looking to improve their health using natural methods. This includes our eye health. In today’s blog post, we’re going to take a look at 5 ways to improve eye health naturally.

Improve Your Diet

The old adage, “you are what you eat” is more true than ever before. Due to modern agricultural practices, our food contains less nutrients than it did in the past. And, our diets have changed: Most people eat more processed food than their parents did. You can improve your eye health (and your overall health) by simply improving your diet, and being more focused on getting nutrient-dense foods into our daily lives. Here are a few ways that a better diet improves your health:

  • Eat Antioxidants: Studies have shown that antioxidants can significantly reduce the risk of macular degeneration. Add foods to your diet like nuts, turkey, fruits, bell peppers, broccoli, avocados, oysters, chickpeas, and more to get the necessary antioxidants.
  • Eat Greens: Lutein and zeaxanthin are in many green vegetables, which improve your eye health naturally. Foods like peas, spinach, corn, and tangerines contain these nutrients.
  • Eat Omega 3 Fatty Acids: Omega 3 fatty acids reduce the risk of macular degeneration (and hearth health). They are found in fish, like sardines or salmon!

Exercise Your Eyes

You all understand the importance of exercising our bodies for the best health. But, we don’t all understand that you should also exercise your eyes! If you do these exercises in the morning, before you go to sleep, or at any point during the day that your eyes feel tired, you will see results quickly.

Improve Eye Health Naturally: Take Small Steps

Improve your eye health should be at the top of all our lists. After all, we only have one set of eyes that we’ll use every day for the rest of our lives. Take these small steps (improving your diet and exercising your eyes) and you’ll see an improvement in the long-term health of your eyes!

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Contacts vs Glasses: How to Choose the Best Option for You

Contacts vs Glasses - How to Decide

Contacts vs Glasses - How to Decide

There are many things to consider when you have vision problems. One of the decisions you must make is decide whether contacts or glasses are right for you. The debate of contacts vs glasses comes down to personal preference, and the eye problems you have. Here is a closer look at how to choose the best option for you.

Personal Preference that Impact Contacts vs Glasses

There are many different factors that play into whether or not you choose contacts or glasses. These include (but aren’t limited to):

  • Comfort
  • Convenience
  • Budget
  • Aesthetics
  • Lifestyle

Take a minute to consider: Are your eyes usually quite dry? Glasses might be a better option, because contacts can dry out your eyes. Do you play a lot of sports? Contacts might be the better option, as you don’t have to worry about your frames breaking or falling off during your activity. Keep in mind that one isn’t better than the other when it comes to contacts vs glasses. Write a list to determine the best option for you. Here are a few pros and cons of each that we have considered:

Pros of Glasses:

  • Can be a fashion statement.
  • Easy to clean.
  • You don’t have to touch your eyes!
  • Generally cheaper than contacts.
  • Can protect your eyes from foreign objects.

Cons of Glasses:

  • Can make it difficult to play sports.
  • Can be broken easily.
  • Sight can be obstructed by elements – fogging up glasses, etc.
  • Can distort peripheral vision.
  • Thickness can change the appearance of your eyes.

Pros of Contacts:

  • Easy – put them in in the morning, and take out at night.
  • Great for sports and outdoor activities.
  • Aren’t affected by environment.
  • Less vision distortion.
  • You can try out different eye colors!

Cons of Contacts:

  • Can exacerbate eye dryness and irritation.
  • You have to touch your eyes.
  • Require additional cleaning and care.
  • Can exacerbate computer vision problems.
  • Cost to replace can be higher.

As you can see, there are many pros and cons to both glasses and contacts. Again, it really does come down to personal preference. If you have questions about the right option for you, speak with your eye doctor!

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Tips for Good Eyesight | Protect Your Eye Health for Life

Tips for Good Eyesight

Tips for Good Eyesight

We often think that our eyesight is either bad or good – and that we have no control over it. While much of our eyesight depends on genetics, there are some things you can do to improve your eyesight and health. Here are our tips for good eyesight:

Eat a Good Diet

You’ve heard the old adage, “you are what you eat.” This is absolutely true in the case of your eye health. Be sure to eat lots of fruits and vegetables with vitamins E and C, omega-3 fatty acids, zinc, and lutein. These can be found in leafy greens (collards, kale, spinach), eggs, beans, nuts, oysters, pork, salmon, tuna, and citruses like oranges. Eating these foods will give you eyes the nutrients it needs, as well as wards of diseases like macular degeneration and cataracts.

Wear Sunglasses & Eye Protection

Sunglasses aren’t only convenient – they’re healthy. Be sure to choose a pair that blocks at least 99% of UVA and UVB rays. These are the ultraviolet rays that damage your eyes and can increase your risk for cataracts and macular degeneration. If you work at a job where your eyes could be damaged by debris, or you are playing a sport where your eyes could be at risk (such as racquetball, hockey, or lacrosse, be sure to wear protective glasses.

Stop Smoking

We all know the dangers of smoking, but many people don’t realize it has a negative impact on your eye health as well. Smoking puts you at a higher risk of getting cataracts and macular degeneration, as well as damage to your optic nerve. The sooner you stop smoking, the better!

Be Careful with Screen Time

Most of us work on computers for many hours a day. This can cause blurry vision, eyestrain, dry eyes, focus problems, headaches, and even back and neck pain. To avoid these problems, move your screen so that your eyes are level with the top of the monitor (so you’re looking down at the screen), take frequent breaks to rest your eyes (every 20 minutes, look 20 feet away for 20 seconds). Try to take a 15-minute break at least every two hours. If the eye strain won’t go away, consider computer glasses!

Tips for Good Eyesight: Take Care of Your Eyes

We hope you’ve enjoyed our tips for good eyesight: Your eyes will serve you well for many years, especially if you take their health into consideration. Eat a healthy diet, don’t smoke, protect them from the sun, and avoid eye strain from screens, and you’ll be well on your way to a long life of eye health!

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Dry Eye Remedies: Tips to Get Relief from Strain and Discomfort

Common Dry Eye Remedies

Common Dry Eye Remedies

We’ve all experienced it: Those moments when our eyes are so dry, it seems our lids can’t shut, or when the itchiness is unbearable. Many people deal with dry eye problems, so today we’re going to look at some dry eye remedies to provide relief from the strain that dry eyes can cause.

Ointments for Dry Eyes

There are many eye lubricating ointments that provide more long-term relief for dry eye problems. These ointments are used before bedtime, because they can blur vision.

Washing Eyelids

Another option to help with dry eyes is to wash your eyelids. This is done using a clean washcloth soaked in warm water, that is laid over the eyes for five minutes, along with gentle rubbing. A mild soap can be used on eyelids to increase the efficacy.

Eye Drops

One of the most common dry eye remedies is to apply eye drops to get relief. There are many different types of eye drops, however. It’s important to know which one is correct for you! Consider these options, and speak with your doctor about which one is best for you:

  • Preservative vs. Non-Preservative: Did you now that preservatives are added to some types of eye drops? This increases the shelf life, but means you can’t use them as often (usually up to 4 times a day), and they can cause irritation. Non-preservative eye drops come in packages with single-use vials, which is more trouble – but they can be used more often throughout the day for more severe cases.
  • Redness-Preventing Drops: Some eye drops for dry eyes also reduce redness – these can cause irritation over time. If you wish to use this kind, it is wise to speak with your doctor to determine if it is safe.

Dry Eye Remedies to Get Relief

We hope we have provided some helpful information about dry eye remedies you can try to get relief from the itchy sensation that plagues your day. Remember to consult with your eye doctor before beginning any treatment to ensure it is safe and effective for you!