Back to school shopping- check. Annual physical- check. Annual full comprehensive eye exam- oops!
When it comes to eye health, I’ll be the first to admit that my family needs some serious reminders. While our summer has been filled with plenty of beach days and relaxation, it’s also been filled with too much screen time, forgotten sunglasses, and too much sun. So that’s why we’ve teamed up with local Bronx optical chain Metro Optics to bring you a series of eye health facts over the next few weeks to help get those eyes in shape for the school year.
Check out Metro Optics’ Top 5 Ways to Foster Your Kids’ Vision & Eye Health:
1. Annual full comprehensive eye exams. Children and adults alike need complete eye exams yearly – not only to check for vision problems like myopia (nearsightedness), hyperopia (farsightedness), and astigmatism, but also for conditions such as infection, sun damage, injuries, dry eye, and “lazy eye,” as well as more serious diseases including cataracts, glaucoma, diabetic retinopathy, macular degeneration, and even cancer.
To schedule an eye exam at one of Metro Optics’ 4 locations, call 1 800-230-EYES.
2. Wear quality sunglasses when outside in all seasons. necessary for people of ALL ages, in ALL seasons! The developing eyes of children – who receive on average THREE times more sun exposure than adults – are more susceptible to UV damage because the ocular lens inside a child’s eye is less capable of filtering these high-energy rays.
Stay tuned for next week’s list of top eyewear picks for kids.
3. When using eye-straining electronic devices (cell phones, tablets, computers, even TVs), consider anti-glare, blue-light filtering eyewear, and limit your child’s time using such devices. Also, get in the habit of practicing the 20-20-20 rule, which helps alleviate digital eye strain by giving your eyes a much-needed break from focusing on screens: Every 20 minutes, look about 20 feet away, for 20 seconds, and be mindful to blink more (screen time often results in a decreased blink rate, which can dry your eyes).
4. Wear protective eyewear when playing sports. 90% of sports-related eye injuries can be avoided, yet: eye injuries are the leading cause of blindness in children in the United States, and most injuries occurring in school-aged children are sports-related. Consult with an optician to make sure your child is wearing ASTM-certified safety frames with 100% UV protection.
5. Eat an “eye-healthy” healthy diet of dark leafy greens such as kale, swiss chard, spinach, and collard greens, also the “incredible, edible egg.” Also, omega-3 fatty acid from cold-water fish (like salmon, tuna, sardines, and halibut) is highly beneficial to eyes as well. For those with a sweet tooth, citrus fruits and strawberries are high in Vitamin C, an antioxidant critical to eye health.
Our final round up will be a list of foods to ensure good eye health- stay tuned!
For more information about eye health and scheduling your next comprehensive eye exam, visit www.metrooptics.com.