May is Healthy Vision Month across the United States — what better reason to take a look at some common eye problems and see how you can better protect your vision?
Three Common Eye Problems
Thanks to age, environmental factors and genetics, you may eventually develop one of these vision issues:
- Glaucoma: Glaucoma is an optic nerve disease typically associated with age and is the leading cause of blindness in the U.S. Early detection is crucial, which makes regular eye exams — including intraocular pressure tests — incredibly important.
- Cataracts: Another age-related disease, cataracts occur when the eye’s lens becomes cloudy, making your vision seem frosted or even off color. Diabetes or some forms of trauma could also lead to cataract symptoms.
- Dry Eye Syndrome: Subpar tear production isn’t just annoying, it’s a sign you may have dry eye syndrome. Menopause and certain medications can cause dry eye syndrome, and there are treatments available.
The Importance of Regular Eye Exams
While it’s vital that you monitor your vision for subtle or sudden changes, some eye diseases can only be caught by a vision care professional. Come in for regular eye exams and you increase the likelihood that your ophthalmologist will be able to spot issues early and treat symptoms before they become advanced.
Tips for Routine Eye Care
In addition to scheduling eye exams, you can protect your vision by:
- Wearing high-quality sunglasses with 99-100 percent UVA and UVB ray protection and protective eyewear when the situation calls for it.
- Eating foods rich in lutein, zinc, vitamins C and E, and omega-3 fatty acids, all of which help minimize your risk of vision issues such as cataracts and macular generation.
- Avoiding smoky environments and quitting if you currently smoke.
- Taking regular breaks from digital devices and paying attention to eyestrain, blurry vision, headaches and other signs of overuse.
If you’re concerned about a potential eye problem or just want to see where your vision stands, it’s time to schedule an eye exam. Call Illinois Eye Center today at (309) 243-2400, and we’ll get you on the books!