5 Ways to Celebrate Healthy Vision Month

mechanic with safety glasses

Keep your eyes protected on the job by always wearing your safety glasses.

June is Healthy Vision Month. To celebrate, let’s look at 5 ways to immediately increase your chances of enjoying a lifetime of healthy vision.

1. Get an eye exam. Most adults admit a loss of vision would have an extreme impact on their lives. Yet, according to the Glaucoma Research Foundation, 25% have not had an eye exam in the last 2 years, and 9% have never had an eye exam.All About Vision says a comprehensive eye exam determines not just your prescription but also whether or not your eyes are working together properly and if you have symptoms of common eye diseases. Eye exams also give an indication of overall health with eye doctors often being the first alerted to the presence of chronic diseases such as high blood pressure and diabetes.

2. Take Omega-3 Fatty Acids. Well known for the benefit to heart health, Omega-3 fatty acids might also benefit eye health by lessening the symptoms of eye disease. According to The National Eye Institute, age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is the leading cause of vision loss in the United States. While Omega-3’s are not proven to prevent AMD, research shows they may slow its progression.

3. Eat a healthy diet. There’s no shortage of research showing that a healthy diet is essential for overall physical and mental health. That benefit may also include eye health, specifically reduction of cataracts. In fact, research shows that women who ate a “diet closest to the U.S. government’s 1990 Dietary Guidelines for Americans were less likely to develop cataracts than those who did not follow the guidelines as closely.” While eating a healthy diet does not guarantee you won’t develop cataracts, it does lower the risk.

4. Understand the dangers. From the dangers posed by laser pointers to the potential dangers in the workplace, threats to eye health surround us. Adhering to workplace safety procedures as well as implementing your own safety plan at home can help protect your eyes. Begin with education to understand the potential dangers, and then take action by reducing risk with safety practices and by wearing safety glasses or goggles regularly.

5. Wear sunglasses regularly. Many people regularly wear sunscreen to protect their skin but often forget the importance of protecting their eyes against sunburn. They also don’t realize that, over time, sun damage to the eyes increases the risk and progression of diseases such as AMD and cataracts. Wearing sunglasses with maximum UV protection can decrease the risk of cumulative sun damage and thus help keep eyes healthy for a lifetime. Check out the article Sun Safety for more details on how to safely enjoy the sun.

Most people value their eyesight over their other senses, yet many do little to promote healthy eyesight. The above tips can go a long way in ensuring eyes stay healthy for a lifetime, but they only help if put into practice. If you truly value your eyesight, begin protecting it today!

7 Steps That Help Prevent Eye Allergies

Don't Let Eye Allergies Ruin Your Summer

Don’t Let Eye Allergies Ruin Your Summer

Spring has sprung and Summer is just around the corner, which means allergy season is in full swing. Common substances such as tree pollen’s  dust and pet dander can make your eyes miserable. If you suffer from red, itchy, watery eyes more than likely you’re suffering from eye allergies.

Feel free to blame your parents for this problem as most eye allergies are usually hereditary (thanks Dad). Fortunately there are are ways to help prevent or reduce your symptoms.

  1. While spending time outdoors, wear wrap-around sunglasses or safety glasses to help keep allergens away from your eyes. If your eyewear features polycarbonate lenses, you’ll get the added benefit of 99.9% UV protection as well.
  2. When driving around keep your car windows closed. Not only will this keep allergens from being rammed into your eyes, but it will help keep the interior of your car cleaner.
  3. Replace the air filters in your home on a regular basis. These nifty devices help keep allergens, such as pollen, dust and pet dander out of your home, but if your filters haven’t been changed in awhile, they may be doing more harm than good.
  4. Reduce your exposure to Dust Mites by encasing your pillow in allergen reducing covers. Wash your sheets in water that’s at least 130 F.
  5. Check the pollen reports on your favorite weather app and try to stay inside on high-pollen days. If you have no choice and need to spend the day outside, make sure to shower, wash your hair and change clothes as soon as possible to remove allergens.
  6. Try to keep your pets off the furniture and frequently vacuum your floor and furniture with a HEPA filter equipped vacuum. Avoid touching your eyes after handling pets and give “Fido” a bath if he’s been outside rolling around in high allergen areas.
  7. Schedule an exam with your eye doctor, they can provide advice on allergy specific eye drops and make sure you don’t have an underlying dry eye condition, which may be mistaken as eye allergies.

By limiting your exposure to allergens you’ll take a big step towards relief. And that means you’ll be able to enjoy the Spring and Summer even more.

Feel free to share any tips or advice you have on eye allergy prevention or relief in our comments section below.

How To Find Your Dominant Eye

Dominant Eye Test

Example of a quick test to find your dominant eye.

Your dominant eye is the one your brain favors when it process visual input. Most people instinctively use their dominant eye when looking through a telescope, aiming a weapon or looking through a camera’s viewfinder.

If you’re not sure which eye is dominate, here’s a simple test:

  1. Extend your arms in front of you with your palms facing away.
  2. Bring your hands together, forming a small hole by crossing the thumbs and fore fingers.
  3. Choose a small object about 15-20 feet away from you. With both eyes open, focus on the object as you look through the small hole.
  4. Close one eye and then the other. When you close one eye, the object will be stationary. When you close the other eye, the object should disappear from the hole or jump to one side.
  5. If the object does not move when you cover one eye, then that eye is dominant. The eye that sees the object and does not move is the dominant eye.

It’s estimated that 80% of the world’s population is right eye dominant. Contrary to popular belief, eye dominance doesn’t always correlate with hand dominance.