As our eyes gradually change as the years progress, it becomes all the more important to ensure that our vision is kept in the greatest possible condition. Though we can often take our eyesight for granted, we really shouldn't – over one in eight Australians aged 80 and above will fall victim to glaucoma, and an even bigger one in seven show the symptoms of age-related macular disease (AMD), according to Better Health Victoria.
With this in mind, by taking simple steps to take care of your eyes, you can minimise the risk of your eyesight falling by the wayside during senior living, which means that you can better enjoy the good times that will come as you consider your retirement options.
Keep regular eye test appointments
As we sail past retirement age, many of us will have to wear glasses or contact lenses to correct our vision and keep things in sharp focus. Indeed, it can even be a condition of our driving licence that we are not allowed to get behind the wheel of a motor vehicle unless our vision is helped along by either of these vision aids.
With this in mind, it's important to ensure that you go for regular eye tests at your local optician's – around every six months should be ample. Not only will these simple tests ensure that you have the correct strength prescription lenses, they'll also be able to identify any eye diseases that may be developing, such as cataracts or AMD.
Catching eye conditions early can give you a fighting chance of overcoming them, and keeping regular eye appointments will ensure that this is the case.
Lifestyle for healthy eyes
As with all facets of healthy living, what you eat can substantially affect the overall level of our visual wellbeing. As such, a wholesome, nutritious diet, rich in vegetables, fruits and nuts, can help stave off eye conditions like AMD and cataracts. A great diet will benefit you in a great many other ways, too, so try and keep on eating good, honest food.
In Australia, we are particularly exposed to the sun's rays. While this can make for some glorious outings and the world appear a more beautiful place, those oh-so-dangerous rays can severely hurt our eyes, no matter what age we are. Strong sunlight can also cause cataracts, so always wear sunglasses with a UV filter to stop them penetrating into your eyes.
There are endless reasons to quit smoking, and the fact that it can increase the chances of developing AMD and cataracts is yet another. Keeping on the physical health side of things, maintaining a recommended healthy weight will reduce the risk of developing diabetes, which can also cause sight problems.
Finally, by partaking in regular exercise and a sense of active living, you'll ensure excellent circulation on top of increased oxygen intake – each of which are beneficial to eye health.