Prevention of eye conditions
Lead a healthy lifestyle:
Making subtle changes to your lifestyle can help improve your eye health and minimise your risk of developing common eye conditions in later life. To help you keep your eyes in peak condition take a look at the suggestions and local / national resources below:
- Eat a healthy and balanced diet. Find out more about nutrition and eyesight here.
- Stay physically active, do at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity activity a week or 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity activity a week. To find a new activity or club near you take a look at Active Derbyshire.
- Maintain a healthy weight (BMI between 18.5 - 25 or 23 for Black, Asian and other ethnic minority groups). The NHS has a BMI Calculator and a weight loss plan that you can access.
- People with diabetes should ensure they control their blood sugar levels, blood pressure and cholesterol. Diabetic eye screening appointments should also be attended.
- Quit smoking – For support to stop smoking Derbyshire patients can access the Live Life Better Derbyshire service and Derby patients can access the Live Well service.
- Keep alcohol consumption to a minimum of no more than 14 units per week. If you are finding it difficult to reduce your level of alcohol use the Derbyshire Recovery Partnership who can offer you help and support.
- If you’d like to think further about your lifestyle factors take the How Are You Quiz for an assessment and to find out ways to improve your health and wellbeing.
The Better Health web page offers advice on quitting smoking, losing weight and getting active, including app suggestions such as Easy Meals, Couch to 5k and Drink free days.
Protect your eyes:
Taking the time to protect your eyes can avoid unnecessary accidents and injuries. Take a look at the tips below to make sure your eyes are well protected in everyday situations. Remember, it only takes a split second for injuries to occur.
- Wear eye protection where appropriate at work, at home with any DIY projects, or helping or working with others where there can potentially be eye injuries.
- Take care in the garden as well, with chemicals and protruding or overhanging objects or branches.
- When working with chemicals, be very careful with splashes and spillages. Do not rub your eyes when handling chemicals.
- If you do happen to get any chemicals in your or others eyes, the best thing is immediately washing the eyes out as much as possible. If you do need to seek attention, please make a note of the chemical name, or carry the chemical bottle with you to show the person attending to you.
- Reduce screen time – the ‘20’ rule, every 20 minutes take a 20-second break and focus on an object 20 feet away. Take the Screen Smart quiz here.
- Follow contact lens hygiene advice, for some helpful tips take a look here.
- Wear sunglasses to protect your eyes from the UV light in sunlight
- Throw away out of date make-up. Adhere to ‘Period after Opening’ times on cosmetics.
- Attend sight tests at regular intervals as advised by your Optician
Why is a sight test important?
Many people think that a sight test is just about checking whether your vision needs correcting with glasses or contact lenses. But there are other important reasons to have a regular sight test.
A sight test is a vital check on the health of the eyes and includes the detection of eye conditions. Many of these, if found early, can be treated successfully, avoiding potential sight loss. They can also detect other health conditions such as high blood pressure or diabetes and should be part of everyone’s healthcare routine.