10 most important tips for eye health – Dr.Roshni Mohan, Retina dept, Aravind Eye hospital

The health of a person is easily visible in the sparkle seen in a person’s eyes. Eyes are intricate, delicate and sensitive organs. Eye hygiene is an important aspect of health. The most common eye ailments today are

  • Refractive problems
  • Dry eyes
  • Glaucoma
  • Diabetic retinopathy
  • Age related  macular degeneration.

Each one of them is preventable , if detected and corrected in early stage. As the old proverb goes “Prevention is better than cure”. However majority of the people present late either due to lack of awareness or negligence. But eye being a sensitive organ, many of these problems presented late results in an irreversible damage. Late diagnosis complicates the problem and at times calls for expensive  surgeries and sometimes irreparable damage . The awareness for early detection and better eye care should spread among people.

Here are some easy to follow tips for better eye care

Tip 1 Eat healthy food

Eat healthy especially green leafy vegetables, fresh fruits and nuts.

Pumpkins, carrots, mangoes, nuts are good sources of vitamin A. Coloured vegetables like red , yellow capsicum are rich in antioxidants that prevent free radical damage

 Tip 2 Annual eye examination must above 40 years of age

Diabetes and hypertension do have an effect on a person’s vision. From cornea to the retina is affected by diabetes .

Both diabetes and hypertension affect the person’s retina and can cause irreversible damage. So annual examinations are mandatory above the age of 40, especially dilated fundus examinations.

Tip 3 Check for Glaucoma

Glaucoma is the leading cause of preventable blindness. Intraocular pressure is the most important modifiable risk factor in glaucoma. Annual check of IOP helps in early detection and prevention of glaucomatous damage. If you experience excess pressure in your eyes, please do not postpone your visit to your doctor.

Tip 4 Protection from harmful UV rays

Sun protection and protection from harmful UV rays protects the lens from cataract. Don’t forget your sunglasses when going out in hot sun

Tip 5 Avoid Smoking

Abstinence from smoking helps in preventing the onset of macular degeneration.

Tip 6 Study in proper lighting

Proper lighting is essential for reading or watching television. It is also recommended to adopt a proper posture while reading or watching TV.

Children need to be taught about the need for studying in good lighting conditions and at proper reading distance. Reading or watching TV while lying in bed should be avoided.

Tip 7 Screening of school children

Young school children should be screened for refractive errors, squint.

Tip 8 Watch out for white reflex

Any white reflex in a child should be dealt with immediately .Immediate consultation with an ophthalmologist is mandatory.

 Tip 9 Safety while bursting fire works

Safety is very important, especially during festivals like Diwali where lot of fireworks are on display. Children should be taught to deal with crackers safely as cracker injuries lead to loss of vision. Even adults suffer injuries due to negligence and over confidence.

Tip 10 Caution against dry eyes

Dry eyes are common in computer users especially IT professionals, postmenopausal women. Tear substitutes should be used only after a complete work up by an ophthalmologist, as it is multifactorial in nature.