September - Healthy Aging Month

September is Healthy Aging Month!

According to a national survey released by the American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO), nearly two out of three American adults report having eye or vision problems. A significant percentage of them, however, fail to seek medical attention in the form of regular, sight-saving eye exams. The observance of Healthy Aging Month in September emphasizes the importance of having regular eye exams to maintain healthy eyes and vision. [1]

Make Vision a Health Priority

According to The National Eye Institute (NEI), getting a comprehensive dilated eye exam is one of the best things you can do to keep your eyes healthy. A comprehensive dilated eye exam can help protect your sight by making sure you are seeing your best and detecting eye diseases in their early stages, before vision loss has occurred. [2] Dilation is an important part of a comprehensive eye exam because it enables your eye care professional to get a good look at the back of the eyes and examine them for any signs of damage or disease. [3]

In addition to getting a comprehensive dilated eye exam, remember to also follow these simple steps, recommended by The National Eye Institute (NEI), to make sure your eyes are healthy! [3]

  • Know your risk factors. As you get older, you are at higher risk of developing age-related eye diseases and conditions such as age-related macular degeneration (AMD), cataract, diabetic eye disease, dry eye, and glaucoma. Having a family history of eye disease also puts you at higher risk. And being overweight or obese increases your risk of developing diabetes and other systemic conditions that can lead to vision loss. If you are having trouble maintaining a healthy weight, talk to your doctor.
  • Eat right to protect your sight. You’ve heard carrots are good for your eyes, but eating a diet rich in fruits and vegetables—particularly dark leafy greens such as spinach, kale, or collard greens—is important for keeping your eyes healthy, too. Research has also shown that there are eye health benefits from eating fish high in omega-3 fatty acids, such as salmon, tuna, and halibut. A healthy diet can also help you maintain a healthy weight, which can help protect your vision.
  • Wear your shades and a brimmed hat. Sunglasses and a brimmed hat are great fashion accessories, but their most important job is to protect your eyes from the sun’s harmful rays. When purchasing sunglasses, look for ones that block out 99 to 100 percent of both UV-A and UV-B radiation. Prolonged sun exposure is associated with developing AMD and cataract.
  • Don’t smoke. 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 AMD, cataract, and optic nerve damage, all of which can lead to vision loss and blindness.
  • Use protective eyewear. Wear protective eyewear such as goggles, safety glasses, face shields, and eye guards when playing sports or doing activities around the home and encourage your family and friends to do the same. Most protective eyewear lenses are made of polycarbonate, which is 10 times stronger than other plastics.

(SOURCE: [1] AAO, [2] NEI, [3] NEI)

Pinterest- UV ProtectionCheck out our Healthy Aging Pinterest Board and Healthy Vision Pinterest Board for more helpful information!

Call Giliberti Eye and Laser Center at (973) 595-0011 to schedule your comprehensive dilated eye exam!