According to the American Academy of Ophthalmology, one in three Americans will have a vision impairing disease. The leading causes of adult blindness and low vision can be attributed to four diseases: age-related macular degeneration, diabetic retinopathy, glaucoma, and cataracts. The problem with all four of these diseases is that they do not cause pain or have other early warning symptoms that would prompt someone to go to the eye doctor.
However, there are several steps you can take to reduce your risk of developing an eye disease:
- Get a comprehensive medical exam at age 40 – At this age some early symptoms could begin to present.
- Know your family history – Some diseases can be inherited and knowing your heritage can help the doctor evaluate your risk.
- Eating healthy foods – Healthy foods, like leafy greens and many fruits and vegetables give your eyes the vitamins and nutrients that they need.
- Stop smoking – If you’re a smoker, it does increase your chance of developing an eye disease.
- Wear sunglasses – Wearing sun glasses blocks the harmful UV rays of the sun that can increase risk of eye disease.
Of course, everything is dependent specifically on you and your health factors and family history. Keeping a routine eye exam on the books is important to helping track changes in your eye health. For more questions, contact our team. We’re happy to help!