Our eyes are one of the most important parts of our body as they allow us to view the world around us. Even with eyes acting as such an important element of our quality of life, many individuals are unaware of the several factors in their daily routine that might be bringing harm to them. Read below to learn more about these potential hazards and the best ways to combat these risks for stronger, healthier eyes.
Blue light exposure
By now, you’ve probably heard of blue light rays that are emitted from LED lights, cellphones, televisions, and more—but do you know just how much these rays are affecting you? Studies show that blue light exposure contributes to eye strain and has a big impact on the body’s natural sleep cycle, also known as the circadian rhythm. Exposing yourself to extended periods of blue light suppresses melatonin secretion, making it more difficult for your body to fall asleep when it’s time for bed.
Traditionally, focusing on less screen time is recommended, but in today’s day and age with quarantine restrictions and remote work, it can be harder to stay away from our devices. Consider looking into blue light blocking glasses options to help filter out these rays and promote a healthier, more stable sleeping schedule (and put the phone down a few hours before bed!).
Since our eyes are organs, they depend on a certain level of hydration to function properly. While lack of water can cause dizziness, fatigue, muscle cramps, and other challenges, dehydration can also affect the eyes. Specifically, dry eyes can occur when the body is lacking the proper amount of fluid to lubricate the eyes and produce tears on its own.
To help fight dry eyes and the other many negative results of dehydration, be sure to drink plenty of water throughout the day. Specifically, alkaline water bottles help you stay hydrated and provide needed antioxidants along with other health benefits like inflammation reduction and aiding indigestion. An insulated water bottle makes it easier and more convenient to consume the adequate amount of water that the body needs to perform at its best on a daily basis.
Be smart about old makeup products
As great as mascara, eyeliner, concealers, and other eye cosmetics can make us feel, they can also do serious damage to your eyes if not used properly. From using outdated products, contaminating products by contact, color additives in products, and more, staying vigilant in your cosmetic use is a crucial part of your eye health.
The FDA suggests properly sanitizing your hands and storing your cosmetic products in the proper temperature and surfaces can fight harmful fungi and bacteria that can lead to unwanted infections of the eye. Additionally, refraining from swapping products and using only products intended for your eyes can create a healthy makeup routine and keep your eyes safe.
Everyone is guilty of some sort of unhealthy habit, and for some, this might include smoking. If you smoke cigarettes, you may want to reconsider the health impacts that it can have on your body and long-term wellbeing. In addition to causing various issues to the lung and heart, smoking can further lead to several vision issues—such as glaucoma, cataracts, dry eye syndrome, and more.
As smoking increases the chances of developing these types of eye health and vision loss issues, looking at support and options to help quit could have direct benefits on not only your eyes but your overall health.
Incorrect contact lens care
Given that not everyone is blessed with 20/20 vision, a popular option for individuals with vision impairments is to wear contact lenses as a convenient alternative. While contacts offer a great option outside of eyeglasses or Lasik surgery, they also open the door for unwanted eye problems when not correctly used.
In fact, the CDC shares that anywhere from 40%-90% of contact lens users do not follow the proper care instructions. If you are a contact lens wearer, remember to have fully sanitized hands before putting in and taking out your contacts, throw away old lenses, remove lenses before going to sleep, and select the best type and brand of contact for your situation and lifestyle.
Lack of good sleep
Getting a good night’s sleep has many benefits to your body and how you feel when you wake up in the morning. Because of this, it isn’t surprising that not getting enough sleep can cause weakness in eye muscles resulting in instances of blurred vision or a harder time refocusing.
In order to maintain clarity, decrease puffiness/under-eye circles, and give your eyes the rest they need to function at their best, follow some of these tricks to get a better night’s sleep. A few top tips include avoiding caffeine intake later in the day, developing a stable bedtime routine, and creating a space that promotes relaxation.
Ultraviolet light is the radiation present in sunlight, and, without proper protection, can have damaging effects on the eyes. Keep in mind that this includes both short- and long-term problems. Therefore, if you live an active lifestyle that includes many outdoor activities, it can be worthwhile to invest in quality products to fight these harmful rays for your eyes and skin alike.
To prevent Macular Degeneration and other issues associated with extended UV exposure to the eye, wear UV-blocking sunglasses when outside for long periods of time. Similarly, if you are a tanning bed user, it is recommended to always wear approved goggles to protect your cornea and to keep them on securely for the duration of your session.
All of these considerations and different ways you can best focus on healthy vision ultimately lead to creating healthier habits overall. You only get one set of eyes, so working to protect them from these daily hazards and bad habits boost your long-term vision.