Tips for Better Eye Health

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Get your eyes dilated

An exam that includes eye dilation is the only way to detect many common diseases such as glaucoma, diabetic eye disease and age-related macular degeneration in their early stages.

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Wear sunglasses

We typically remember to shield our skin from the sun's ultraviolet rays, but shielding our eyes is just as important. When purchasing sunglasses, look for ones that block out 99 to 100 percent of both UV-A and UV-B radiation.

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Rest your eyes

If you spend a lot of time at the computer, it's important to rest your eyes to prevent eye strain. Try the 20-20-20 rule: Every 20 minutes, look away about 20 feet in front of you for 20 seconds.

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Clean your hands and your contact lenses

To avoid the risk of infection, always wash your hands thoroughly before putting in or taking out your contact lenses. Make sure to disinfect contact lenses as instructed and replace them as directed.

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Stop smoking

You probably haven't thought about cigarette smoke and how it affects eye health. But smoking is as bad for your eyes as it is for the rest of your body. Research has linked smoking to an increased risk of developing age-related macular degeneration, cataracts and optic nerve damage, all of which can lead to blindness.

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Keep your weight down

Being overweight or obese increases your risk of developing diabetes and other systemic conditions, which can lead to vision loss, such as diabetic eye disease or glaucoma.

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Know your family's eye medical history

It’s important to know if anyone in your family has been diagnosed with an eye disease or condition since many are hereditary.