HomeNews May is Healthy Vision Month

May is Healthy Vision Month

Lisa Niven, OD, Palmetto Health-USC OphthalmologyEight tips to help you protect your vision

From the moment you wake up until you go to bed at night, your eyes are working to bring you the world. In fact, your eyes deliver 80 percent of the information you take in every day, which is why it’s important to protect your vision.

May is Healthy Vision Month. Since vision is a major component of healthy living, Palmetto Health-USC Medical Group wants to remind you that this is an ideal time to visit an eye care professional for the exam you may have been putting off or to update your current eyewear. According to National Eye Institute, more than 23 million Americans age 18 and older have never had an eye exam.

Lisa Niven, OD, optometrist for Palmetto Health-USC Ophthalmology, believes you can take steps to help improve your eye health. She said, “Having a comprehensive dilated eye exam is the best thing you can do to protect your vision, especially if you are at a higher risk of eye disease. A comprehensive dilated eye exam is a painless procedure that allows your physician to get a good look at the back of the eye to check for signs of eye disease. With early detection, treatment can slow or stop vision loss and reduce the risk of blindness."

Here are eight tips to help you protect your vision:

  1. Get a comprehensive dilated eye exam.
  2. Know your family’s eye health history. It is important to know if any of your family members have been diagnosed with any eye diseases, since many are hereditary.
  3. Protect your eyes – at work and play. You can help protect your eyes from injury by wearing protective eyewear like safety glasses, goggles and safety shields.
  4. Give your eyes a rest. Every 20 minutes, look away from your work and focus about 20 feet in front of you for 20 seconds. This reduces eyestrain and helps your eyes feel better at the end of the day.
  5. Wear sunglasses, even on cloudy days. Sunglasses help protect the eyes from damaging sun rays.
  6. Eating healthy, including a diet rich in vegetables and fruits, is vital for eye health.
  7. Quit smoking or never start.
  8. Understand how certain diseases, including diabetes, can affect your eye health.

Niven added, “Taking care of your eyes should have the same level of priority as your diet and physical activity. Healthy vision is essential in our daily lives, from driving a car to picking out what you want to eat at a restaurant.”

For more information about Palmetto Health-USC Ophthalmology, visit phuscmg.org or call CareCall at 803-296-CARE (2273).