We can take our eyes for granted but we rely on them so much in everyday life. We use them to navigate the world around us, express our emotions and connect with other people, but how well do we actually look after them?

With all the other aspects of keeping fit and healthy, it’s all too easy to let your eyes go neglected. To ensure your peepers stay in tip-top condition, Battin Eyecare has created a checklist with the top 10 ways to keep them healthy. We’re pretty partial to #1…

10. Look after lenses
If you do wear contact lenses, don’t forget to keep them clean. You should rinse them every time you put them in or take them out. And don’t forget to keep check of your solutions use-by date — it’s no good if it’s past its best.

9. Try eye yoga
Try out the ancient yoga method of ‘palming’ in daily eye care routine. The trick of palming adds optic nerve relaxation as a main way to bring better clarity of vision and health to the eye, both mentally and physically. Simply, place your cupped hands over the eyes with the eyelids closed. Place the crossed fingers on the forehead and block out all light for total darkness. Breathe long, slow and deep breaths for a couple of minutes of rest for the eyes, mind and rest of the body.

8. Eye workout
Like muscles in the rest of our body, the muscles in the eyes need to be kept in good shape. To give them a work out, try holding a pencil three inches from your face and focus on the tip. Move it away to arms length away and then bring it forward again. These types of exercises can help to alleviate eye strain from too much reading or computer work.

7. Television
If you like to unwind with a spot of television, it’s important not to sit too close. Keep a distance of at least two or three metres between your eyes and the TV screen. Blink your eyes frequently while watching a program. Avoid turning off all of the lights in the room and if give your eyes a break every half hour if you are watching a long program or film.

6. Take a break
Staring at a computer all day can lead to dry eyes. On the whole people blink about 25 percent less often than usual while looking at their screen. Keep this in mind and the next time your computer is ticking over, close your eyes for five seconds and open slowly. You should also train yourself to focus on a distant object at regular intervals tool.

5. Get the right light
The damage to eyes by working in poor light is well know, but light that is too bright can as just as bad. Ideally you should use blinds to shield your eyes from bright sunlight and try to keep overhead lighting to minimum; that is, well lit but not so bright you need sunglasses to see! The best lighting for working on the computer is a soft desk light, coming from the side. Also, you can try decreasing the brightness of your monitor. The colours won’t be so vivid, but your eyes will feel much better by the end of the day.

4. Eat what is good for you and your eyes
As with all aspects of keeping a healthy body, eating a nutritious diet will benefit. Recent research has shown that vitamins of the antioxidant group slow down, age-related conditions. Vitamins C, A and E, folic acid, selenium and zinc are definitely beneficial for the health of your eyes. These can be found in your recommended daily intake of five portions of fruit and veg. So put a carrot and a bunch of grapes into your lunch box.

3. Wear sunnies
We’re not suggesting you keep them on 24/7 of course, but when you’re out and about during the day, be sure to pop your sunglasses on. UV rays can deteriorate your sight and you need to ensure that when you are out shopping for new sunnies that they block at out as much radiation as possible — category 3 or 4 are ideal.

Despite popular belief, darker lenses do not necessarily offer more protection. You should always check the category number that indicates the level of protection which ranges from 0 (none) to 4 (very high). And one final thing to remember; like SPF protection, sunglasses are needed on an overcast day too. Clouds are only vaporised water, and water is UV-transparent.

2. Test out lenses
Not all contact lenses are the same and you need to find the right ones for your eyes. Opticians will be able to talk you through the pros and cons of what is on offer, however, don’t feel you have to take any recommendations. Home trials are now a common element of purchasing lenses so ask about trialling to find something to suit you and your lifestyle.

1. Visit your local Optician or Optometrist!
If you are having issues with your vision, it’s time to stop denying the fact you need some help. Unchecked problems will not improve on their own, and wearing the wrong type of contact lenses or glasses can lead to headaches and further deterioration of sight. Book an appointment at your optician and let them be the judge of how best treat your vision.

If you’re interested in the #1 way to keep your eyes healthy, schedule an appointment today by clicking here!