Premature Aging Can Happen to your Eyes

By Eye Institute of Houston
June 15, 2016

eye careAge is not something we can avoid. As we have become more aware of the aspects of the aging process in general, more adults have taken control of concerns such as premature aging of the skin. But aging also affects our eyes. In fact, research shows that there are certain habits that expedite the aging process.

Food choices. What we eat affects every aspect of our health, including our eyes. To minimize your risk of eye conditions such as macular degeneration, include plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables into your meals. The eyes also rely on nutrients from healthy fats and lean meats such a salmon. Look for foods that contain omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, or consider taking an appropriate supplement.

Sleep habits. When you sleep, every cell in your body refreshes. This is just as important for your eyes as it is for your heart and for your brain. When you do not get the sleep that you need, your eyes may appear bloodshot, making you look as tired as you may feel. They may suffer irritation, and your vision may be blurry. Studies show that lack of sleep is also a factor and involuntary eye twitching.

Sun damage. When we think about sun damage, we typically consider how UV exposure affects our skin. It is also important, however, to consider your eye health as it relates to this exposure.  Research shows that excess UV exposure affects both the skin around the eyes, and the eyes themselves. Too much exposure increases your risk of cataracts, macular degeneration and other potentially serious eye conditions.

Smoking. Cigarettes contain much more than tobacco. The nicotine and other chemicals that are in cigarette smoke float straight up to the eyes, where they can inhibit oxygenation and weaken the ocular tissues. Studies suggest that a smoker is 4 times more likely to suffer blindness later in life, and also at a significant risk for conditions such as cataracts and macular degeneration.

Experts agree that eye conditions that are detected early can be more easily treated. Not all diseases of the eye can be cured. However, many of them can be controlled with appropriate care. To schedule your eye exam, give our office a call.

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