After watching the recent series "Wild Borneo" with Dame Judi Dench where she touches on her deteriorating eyesight, we thought it might be worth taking a look at our eyesight in general - and what we can do to protect it.
Dame Judi has a degnerative eye condition called age-related macular degeneration (AMD), which gradually causes the loss of vision. One of the first symptoms is the blurring of your vision when you look straight ahead. This is followed by a number of other symptoms including the inability to make out fine details (which can mean that reading and driving becomes more difficult), the inability to make out faces, and faces, writing or images becoming distorted.
There are two types of AMD - they're commonly called “dry" and “wet”.
Dry is the most common form and occurs when deposits build up on the macula. Wet AMD is when abnormal blood vessels damage the macula cells. Wet AMD is the most serious, and can in some instances develop from dry AMD.
The most unfortunate thing is that there is no cure for the condition. However you may find that vision aids and a healthy diet rich in Vitamins A, C and E can help.
Whilst AMD can be a concern as you get older, protecting your eyes and your eyesight is essential throughout your life to maximise their health - after all, you only have one set of eyes!
So here are Eyemaster's top tips for protecting your eyesight:
You are what you eat! This isn't just in terms of your weight, but is true for your eyesight too, especially in relation to AMD. If you eat foods that contain either lutein or zeaxanthin they can help prevent eye conditions such as AMD or cataracts.
Stay sun safe. Protecting your eyes from the glare of the sun is one of the best ways to avoid damage to your eyes. Always choose sunglasses that have a UV factor rating and carry the CE mark. And remember to never look directly at the sun.
Know your history. If you've had a member of the family who has had glaucoma then this is especially important as it's a hereditary condition and you should be having more regular checks on your eyes. Early detection is important as it means it can be treated and controlled effectively.
Keep your contact lenses clean. If you wear reusable lenses, then allowing dirt and minerals to build up could result in an eye infection at best, or at worst, corneal disease or even the loss of an eye. You should always use commercially prepared solutions to clean them so that you maintain comfort and eye health.
Give your eyes regular TLC. We all need a break sometimes - and your eyes are no different! If you sit looking at a screen for a large part of the day then make sure you take regular breaks to give your eyes a rest. This will help prevent strain on your eyes and can reduce headache frequency and severity.
Cale is the Owner of 'thebestofHastings', the award winning franchise, providing integrated marketing solutions to SMEs, connecting to the Hastings community and promoting local events in 1066 Country....