People often don't give their eyes the respect they deserve, but it's not necessarily out of negligence. You simply may not know how many things in your daily life could be hurting your eyes. If you're concerned about your vision and want to maintain it for as long as you can, consider these three hazards and how well you're protecting yourself from them.
1. UV Light
UV light is often thought of as something that's good for plants and bad for skin, but that's not all it does. UV light also damages the fragile cells of the eye and can lead to problems further down the road. It can also potentially trigger a sort of eye sunburn, called photokeratitis. These sunburns aren't permanent, but they can be extremely irritating, itchy, and potentially painful.
Without adequate protection to UV light, your eyes could be getting harmed on a daily basis. To make matters worse, you don't have to go outside to be exposed to UV light. Many lightbulbs emit UV light, and UV light can penetrate through window glass, meaning your eyes could be getting exposed to UV right now.
2. Blue Light
Blue light is another light wave spectrum that can be very harmful to the eyes. The sun produces blue light, but generally in small enough quantities that it's not considered a risk unless you're spending an excess of time outside. Unfortunately, that's not the sole source of blue light anymore.
The vast majority of electronics now emit large quantities of blue light. Computers, phones, and basically any other electronic with a screen emit this wavelength. The problem? Blue light has been shown to increase the risk of macular degeneration later in life, which is one of the leading causes of blindness for older people.
3. Air Pollution
Finally, it might surprise you to learn that even the air you breathe could be harmful to your eyes.
To be fair, the oxygen that you need to breathe isn't the problem. However, the air is now full of harmful toxins that are produced by factories, cars, machines, and so on. These chemicals can be irritating for your eyes, or downright harmful. One study found that people who were exposed to poor air quality on a regular basis had a much higher rate of ophthalmological problems than those who weren't.
If you want to protect your eyes from these hazards, it's important to schedule regular appointments with your eye doctor for screening. Your eye doctor can catch damage early on and work to reverse it while it can still be stopped. In the meantime, remember to wear sunglasses while outdoors, use a blue light filtering app on your computer and cell phone, and invest in an air purifier for your home.
For more information, contact a medical clinic like Olympia Eye Clinic, Inc., P.S.