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Be Wise About Your Eyes: Proper Care and Treatment Will Have You Seeing 20/20

Oct 21, 2009

They come in all different shapes and sizes and mixtures of colors, and many of us take them for granted, until something goes wrong. Our eyes serve as windows to the world; but as we age, we face an increased risk of forming complicated eye problems such as macular degeneration and glaucoma. Experts agree that by the time you hit middle age, the best way to preserve eye health is to see a specialist regularly.

"It’s important to be proactive in maintaining your site and preventing damage,” said Seenu Hariprasad, MD, chief of vitreoretinal service at Weiss Memorial Hospital and associate professor of ophthalmology and visual science at the University of Chicago. “We recommend visiting an eye care professional every two years for a check-up, which will help to detect any hidden diseases like glaucoma.”

To best protect your vision, follow these Healthful Hints from the experts at Weiss Memorial Hospital:

  • Stop Smoking. Aside from all the other damage smoking causes, it also increases the risk for macular degeneration, cataracts and other eye diseases.
  • Wear Sunglasses. In addition to being a great fashion accessory, sunglasses protect your eyes from the sun’s harmful UV rays, which can cause macular degeneration and cataracts. Don’t forget to protect eyes in the cold winter months too.
  • Eat Right. Carrots have long been the rumored eye health food, but the truth is dark, leafy vegetables actually make the difference. Try kale, spinach and green leaf lettuce to improve your vision. Fish and seafood will also help to bring about a sharper image.
  • Watch Eye Makeup. It’s not just food and medicine that carry an expiration date, eye makeup older than three months should also be thrown out. Discontinue use immediately if it appears to be making your eyes irritated and red, and avoid sharing eye makeup.