Habits to Make and Break in the New Year
With the New Year upon us, more people are thinking about how they can improve various aspects of their lives. As your eye health specialists, we can offer a few suggestions of habits to make, and some to break, to preserve vision and protect long-term eye health.
Get some Shades
In our part of the country, we typically see more sunny days than not. Even when the weather is cooler, the UV rays in sunlight can cause serious problems for our skin and eyes. Not only does wearing sunglasses protect the delicate skin of the eyelids and around the eyes from skin cancer, but sunglasses also prevent the absorption of too much UV light into the eyes. Proper UV protection is necessary to reduce the risks associated with ultraviolet light, including glaucoma and retinal damage. Speak with our optical staff if you have questions about which sunglasses are best for your needs.
Treat Yourself to New Makeup
When you invest in quality makeup, it can be difficult to throw items out once they have been in your bag too long. However, multiple studies have demonstrated the negative effects that expired makeup can have on the eyes, increasing the risk of infection and irritation. Even if you aren’t experiencing symptoms from using old makeup, eye experts say that making a new investment (every three months!) is worth it.
Be Gentle with Your Eyes
We’re all guilty of reacting spontaneously when we get an itch. Itchy eyes are incredibly difficult to ignore. You may find yourself rubbing your eyes without even thinking about it. The thing is, rubbing can spread debris and bacteria across the surface of the eye, which is precisely how pink eye gets spread. Rubbing can also irritate or damage the cornea and lead to premature aging due to the tug on the delicate skin around the eyes. Instead of itching, we recommend using a soft, damp cloth to pat the eye. Applying eye drops may also help reduce itching.
Put That Screen Down
Smartphone use has become the new norm, as have laptops, desktops, gaming consoles, and screens of all types. We have become more than accustomed to our devices, we have virtually become addicted. Studies show that people check their phones as often as several times a minute and, when using them, can stare at their screen for hours at a time. Our love affair with digital devices comes at a cost. Not only does screen-time reduce the frequency of blinking, but it also causes the eyes to work in a way they weren’t meant to. This has led to vision changes in young children that didn’t exist before the digital age and to chronic dry eye in people of all ages. Set the screen down. Go outside. Close your eyes every so often. Your whole body will thank you.
The team at Pasadena Eye Associates can help you guard your vision. Schedule your eye exam at 713.473.5715.