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Helping Your Patients Maintain Healthy Vision For Life

Helping Your Patients Maintain Healthy Vision For Life

11 September 2022

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This September, encourage your patients to participate in Healthy Aging Month. The goal of this observance is to focus on the positive aspects of aging among adults older than 45. There are more than 73 million baby boomers and 65 million Generation X-ers in the United States. As the population ages and lives longer, the need to prioritize health in our older years is increasingly important.

As their eye care professional, you are caring not only for patients’ eye health and vision, but overall wellness. Here are some tips you can share with patients on leading a healthy lifestyle and maintaining eye health.

Engage In Regular Physical Activity

Increasing the heart rate through aerobic exercise helps control and prevent hypertension, heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and depression. Research also finds that 150 minutes of weekly aerobic exercise of moderate intensity reduces the risk for glaucoma by 50 percent. 

Increase Antioxidant Consumption

Oxidative stress is linked to heart disease, stroke, cancers, arthritis, immunodeficiencies, dementia, Parkinson’s disease, and inflammatory or ischemic diseases. In the eye, oxidative damage increases risk for dry eye, cataracts, glaucoma, age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and diabetic retinopathy.

Patients should consider increasing their intake of foods with:

  • Vitamin A
  • Vitamin C
  • Vitamin E
  • Lycopene
  • Beta-Carotene
  • Lutein
  • Zeaxanthin
  • Manganese
  • Selenium
  • Flavonoids

Quit Smoking

Smoking cessation can greatly benefit patients’ health, even in longtime smokers. Studies show that damage from and risks of smoking are reversible:

  • The risk of lung cancer reduces by 50 percent after quitting for 5 years and is nearly the same as that of nonsmokers after 15 years.
  • Stroke risk declines to that of a nonsmoker several years after quitting. 
  • The risk for myocardial infarction drops just 24 hours after the last cigarette and continues to decline up to 50 percent after a year.

Smoking is also associated with higher rates of cataracts, AMD, glaucoma, dry eye disease, thyroid eye disease, and diabetic retinopathy.

Use Sunglasses And Sunscreen Outdoors

Ultraviolet and blue light from the sun contributes to oxidative processes within the eye, leading to cataracts and retinal damage such as AMD. Basal and squamous cell carcinomas are the most common cancers worldwide and are frequently found on the eyelid. Although these skin cancers rarely metastasize, they can be fatal if they do.

Protect Patients’ Vision

Preventative care becomes increasingly essential with age. Remind patients that annual eye exams are the best way to detect eye problems before symptoms arise. In addition, protecting the eyes from the sun and injury (such as from falls, cleaning chemicals, and home improvement projects) can prevent further damage.

R&D Optical Lab carries mirrored treatments, polarized treatments, performance tints, photochromic lenses, and other options to customize sunwear. We also have a wide selection of safety frames, such as ArmouRx. Your patients will enjoy the high-quality and fashionable options ArmouRx offers. If you already carry Titmus safety frames, let us replace them (at no cost to you) for ArmouRx frame samples. To find out more about our products, please visit our website RandDOptical.com or call us at 513-273-4034.

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