The effects of aging are barely limited to gray hair and wrinkles. As we age, it is normal that our vision changes too. Some common eyesight changes in the elderly include difficulties seeing up close and requiring increased adjustment time when levels of light fluctuate. Our loved ones might be prone to dry and watery eyes which can be uncomfortable and causes irritations. Fortunately, these issues can often be easily corrected with teardrops, glasses, and improved lightings.
Some other eye changes such as macular degeneration, cataract, and diabetic retinopathy might be more concerning as we advance into our twilight years. Regular eye exams are thus especially important for our loved ones. Early detection helps to keep their eyes as healthy as possible and enables them to maintain their independence and quality of life.
Meanwhile, here are some lifestyle habits that your loved ones can practice to naturally improve vision.
Nourish Your Eyes
Although it may sound like old folk’s tale, eating carrots is actually good for your vision. Carrots are packed with vitamin A, a vital optic nutrient. Not only that, foods rich in vitamin E, vitamin C, zinc, and copper are also essential nutrients that promote healthy eye function. Here’s a checklist of antioxidant-rich and powerful health food for better vision:
- Omega3-rich fishes such as salmon, sardines, and tuna may help protect against macular degeneration, dry eyes, and even cataracts.
- Leafy green vegetables are loaded with zeaxanthin and lutein, plant pigments that can forestall the development of cataracts.
- Eggs contain lutein and vitamin A which can help prevent dry eyes and night blindness.
- Legumes such as lentils and kidney beans are excellent sources of bioflavonoids and zinc. These power agents protect the retina and reduce the risk of macular degeneration.
- Quinoa, whole oats, brown rice, and whole-wheat bread are healthy alternatives to refined carbohydrates, reducing the elderly’s risks of developing diabetic retinopathy. The niacin, zinc, and vitamin E in whole grains also help promote overall vision health.
Exercise Your Eyes
The human eyes have 6 muscles that could use some exercises to stay fit. Although there is little evidence that eye exercises can improve our vision, they can provide relief to strained and dry eyes. Get your eyes ready by warming them with warm palms for five seconds. Look up and roll your eyes in circles ten times in both directions. Consistently practice these eye exercises for a month and you might be amazed by the difference.
Rest Your Eyes
Focusing your vision persistently can cause eye fatigue, especially prominent in the elderly. Whether you are reading or surfing in front of a computer, closing your eyes for a few moments can be helpful to protect them from over-exertion. A good habit would be to practice the 20-20-20 rule when you need to concentrate for a longer time. After 20 minutes of vision focus, look 20 feet away for at least 20 seconds. On top of short rests, regular restful sleep is also essential for refreshing your vision.
Workout for Your Vision
A healthy vision is intertwined with a healthy physique! Exercising regularly improves blood circulation which is beneficial to the tiny blood vessels in our eyes as it liberates harmful deposits. Regular workouts also help our loved ones maintain a healthy weight, reducing risks of diabetes-related eye conditions.
Protect Your Eyes
Our loved ones are increasingly leaning towards technological gadgets to connect with friends and family. However, excessive exposure to blue light emission from digital devices can be harmful to their eyes. Even for the elderly who do not normally need glasses, wearing a pair of blue-light filter glasses can help protect our loved ones’ eyes. Likewise, always wear quality protective sunglasses when you are under bright sunlight. Besides looking fashionable, sunshades can protect the eyes from UVA and UVB radiation.