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Caring for your eyes is important, and thankfully not so hard to do. Applying a measure of care can help your eyesight last long and keep your body healthy. There are three easy ways to take better care of your eyes this year.

Avoid smoke:

People smoke more when stressed. Kicking the habit is more difficult when one feels pressured about a lot of things. But the damage to the eyes and lungs are side effects that one should avoid at all costs. Smoking damages the blood vessels that supply the optic nerves with blood and nutrients. Smoking also increases the chance of a person developing cataracts and age-related macular degeneration. Try to quit smoking by recognizing and avoiding the things that trigger the desire to smoke.

But beyond active smoking, smoke in the air is also very dangerous to the eyes. Smoke in the air can cause irritation to your eyes with symptoms such as burning sensations, redness, and tearing up. It also worsens the case for those with dry eyes syndrome. Particles within the smoke float in the air and get stuck in your eyes. These particles can remain floating in the air long after the smoke has cleared, so if you stay around fires or where a large fire burned recently, it is best to use protective eyewear.

Eye irritation from smoke can usually be cured with the use of over-the-counter artificial tears and the use of a cold compress, but if your eyes remain irritated for longer than a few days, consult your eye doctor.

A dilated eye exam

Everyone should get a comprehensive eye examination at least once every two years. The eye examination will help the doctors detect any warning signs that might be showing up in the eyes. Many diseases in the body can be detected through an eye examination. This is a big help for the early detection of silent-killer diseases. Some of these diseases can even lead to vision loss if not caught early enough and controlled or reversed.

Try a warm compress

As people get older, the oil glands in the eyes get clogged and so are not able to secrete enough oil into the tear supply which can lead to dry eyes. A warm compress placed over the eyelids will help liquefy the oil to make it flow freely into the tear supply.

A compress is very easy to make and gentle enough to use daily. Simply wet a washcloth with warm (not hot) water and press it against your eyelids for a minute. This always gives your eyes a soothing feeling. Give it a try today.

Always stay in touch with your eye care professional. Contact us for more eye care and eye safety information.