Your eyes are very important organs because you can’t see without them and therefore this single reason should make you guard and protect your eyes jealously.
There are many everyday habits that are destroying your eyes and I will be exposing some of them in this post. Some of them even seem to be healthy like sun gazing and that is why sun worshipers are at high risks of premature eye aging.
If you want to care for your eyes, you need to stop doing the things that will be mentioned in this post and imbibe healthy habits, you also need good nutrition and proper hydration. Below are those things we do that unknowingly are damaging your eyes and triggering eye problems and disorders.
Smoking is a dangerous habit that negatively affects every organ in your body and your eyes are not excluded. Smoking cigarettes damage your eyes and threaten your eyesight.
Cigarettes increase the risks of cataracts, uveitis, macular degeneration, diabetic retinopathy, and dry eyes. In fact, studies show that smokers are four times more likely to go blind than non-smokers.
2. Starring at Screens for a Long Time
Excessive use of computers and smartphones without eye protection is harmful for your eyes because they emit harmful blue light that affects your eyes and even cause irreversible damage when the exposure is too much.
Focusing on your computer screens or phones for hours can cause dry eyes, blurry vision, nausea, headaches, and nausea. It makes your eyes hurt and makes it difficult for you to focus on far objects.
Even watching TV at night or looking at any screen like your cell phones few hours before going to bed in a dark room is bad for your eyes. This is because your eyes will work hard to process the light changes in the darkness. This, in turn, will result into headaches, eye pain, redness, eyestrain, dry eyes, and it even causes insomnia. Reading or writing in a room with dim light is also not healthy for your eyes. It strains your eyes and makes them tired.
It also causes redness, discomforts and pains. Reading while on the road or while the car is in motion is bad also for your eyes, it extends your eyeballs and makes it difficult for your eyes to focus on distant objects.
It also triggers headaches, weaknesses of the eyes, motion sickness, and vomiting.
3. Rubbing Your Eyes
Many people are guilty of this damaging habit, I was. Sometimes, your eyes can itch you severely and the only way you think you can get relieve is to rub them hard. This is causing more harm than good.
When you rub your eyes, you break tiny blood vessels under the surface of your skin because the skin around your eyes is very delicate. It is also one of the first areas on your body that shows the signs of aging. When these blood vessels break, they make your eyes puffy and cause dark circles.
When an object is in your eyes and you rub it, it can scratch your cornea and cause another problem. It also aggravates some eye problems in people who already have them, examples are myopia and glaucoma. Rubbing makes these conditions worse. Continuous eye rubbing thins your cornea and makes it weak, it also pushes it forward and makes it more conical thereby increasing your risks of keratoconus.
keratoconus is a degenerative condition of the eye that occurs when the eye becomes too thin and more conical than normal, this causes distorted vision and in serious cases, a corneal graft would be needed. Intense rubbing can cause retinal detachment, a dangerous eye problem.
Rubbing your eyes is also a leading cause of drooping eyelids and premature crow’s feet, rubbing will affect your appearance. Another danger of rubbing your eyes is the risk of infections because your fingers are dirty. Rubbing also produces histamines that make the itching worse.
Your fingers carry more germs than any part of your body, rubbing with dirty fingers can lead to conjunctivitis and other infections of the eyes. Prevention is always the best remedy, so avoid rubbing your eyes to prevent these conditions. If you have an intense urge to rub your eyes, you can try any of these tips below.
- Get an artificial tears or a sterile saline solution and put it in your eyes instead of rubbing it.
- Wet a clean facecloth and put it on your eyes
- Apply cold gel eye-masks to your eyes but make sure your eyes are closed
- You can rub around your eyes in circular motions using your thumb and index finger, but try not to apply pressure when doing so.
- You can rub somewhere else like your earlobes, it has a surprising effect on eye itch.
- You can close your eyes and roll your eyeballs, this also helps. I do this a lot.
- Change your sleeping position if you love sleeping on your stomach with your face and eyelids pressing against the pillow, this can cause eye itch.
- Even if you sleep on one side, avoid pillow contact and pressure on your eye and eye lids.
- Wear hand gloves so that you can resist the urge to itch.
- You have to see an ophthalmologist if you have intense and regular eye itch.
4. Not Wearing Safety Goggles
Safety glasses are necessary especially if your job need eye protection like welding, spending long hours on the computer and your phone, using chemicals, gazing at the sun, and other work-related risks. These safety goggles protect your eyes from harm, radiation, irritation, fuzzy vision, and even temporary blindness.
Even when you go swimming, wear eye protection or close your eyes tightly. Always remove your contact lenses before you sleep, if not, it will increase your risks of infection and it can even cause permanent damage.
Remember to take your lenses off with clean hands before going to bed at night. Also, do not overuse eye drops or abuse them. Though eye drops offer temporal relief, too much can cause irritations in your eyes. Use your eye drops according to prescriptions and use t for a short period of time.
5. Looking Directly into Bright Sunlight
Sunlight is the cheapest and most effective natural cure we have and due to this, heliotherapy is becoming very popular these days. We have a lot of sun gazers, sun bathers, and even sun worshippers these days.
These groups of people are at increased risks of premature aging, because the sun in its full strength emits harmful UV rays and high energy visible rays (HEV). These damage your eyeballs and eyelids. Looking at bright sunlight for a long time can cause the front surface of your eyes to burn, this is known as photo keratitis. It also causes macular degeneration, cataracts, pterygium, pinguecula, and even eye cancer.
Don’t look at bright sunlight and even if you are a sun gazer, do that at sun rise and sunset and not more than 15 minutes. You can also wear sunglasses that help to block the harmful UV rays and HEV rays at 100%.
6. Poor Nutrition
Poor nutrition is dangerous for your eyes, it deprives your eyes of the vital nutrients it needs for proper health and functioning. You also need essential fatty acids for optimum functions of the eyes.
Increase your intake of foods that improve the health of your eyes, include them in your daily diet; this includes colorful vegetables and fruits, green leafy vegetables, oily fish like salmon and clean water. They will prevent and help you manage age-related eye diseases. Healthy nutrition helps relieve the symptoms of dry eyes and eye problems.
Insufficient sleep affects your whole body and your eyes are the first to suffer the consequences. Sleeplessness and insomnia not only cause rapid aging but dark circles, red and bloodshot eyes, dry eyes, blurry vision, and eye twitching.
If you are suffering from any form of sleeplessness, treat yourself so that it won’t affect your eyes negatively. There are both natural therapies and conventional treatments for insomnia, meet a medical personnel or naturopath for help.
Drinking little amounts of water leads to dehydration most especially when your intake of water is less than the loss of water from the body. Water prevents dehydration which can lead to dry eyes. There are fluids in your eyes to help keep your eyes clean and moisturized, the fluid wash off dirt, debris, and foreign particles in your eyes. It helps cleans your eyes whenever you blink.
When you are hydrated, there will be sufficient fluids in your eyes but when you are dehydrated, it will affect your eyes, they will shrink and your eyes will be unable to produce tears. The liquid constantly present in your eyes lubricates your cornea and nourishes your eyes.
Your cornea has no blood vessels, so it depends on the liquid for oxygen. Drink lots of water and save your eyes from dehydration and the consequences that come along with it. Dehydration causes dryness, puffy eyelids, and redness.
9. Not Having a Regular Eye Checkup
You should try and have regular eye exams, at least twice a year. This will help you detect eye diseases and vision problems that you are not even aware of and treatment can start immediately.
There are some eye-threatening diseases like glaucoma that do not show any sign or symptoms until the damage is irreversible. Regular eye checkup can prevent permanent damage to your eyes and help detect silent eye diseases.