According to Dr David Robinson, Sydney Eye Doctor, if you want to improve your eye health this year, follow these six simple steps to keep your eyes in top shape.

Adopt a healthier lifestyle

Healthy eating and exercise can help protect your eyesight as you age. Eat a balanced diet with plenty of leafy green vegetables (such as spinach and kale), oily fish (such as salmon and sardines), brazil nuts, almonds and citrus fruits such as oranges. These foods are rich in nutrients that will help keep your eyes healthy, including omega-3 fatty acids and vitamins A and C.

Eating a balanced diet will also keep your weight and cholesterol low, which will reduce your chances of developing conditions such as type 2 Diabetes. Diabetic retinopathy (or diabetes-related eye disease) is the most common cause of blindness in working-age adults. Type 2 Diabetes can also lead to other eye problems including macular swelling, glaucoma and cataracts.

Believe it or not, exercise is also essential to good eye health. Studies show that regular exercise can reduce your risk of common eye conditions such as cataracts and macular degeneration. Exercise also reduces your risk of high blood pressure and of developing type 2 Diabetes.

Look after your contact lenses

Caring for your contact lenses can help you avoid all kinds of eye problems, from minor irritations to more serious conditions. Follow these do’s and don’ts to avoid developing an eye infection from germs and bacteria.


·      wash your hands before you handle your contact lenses

·      replace your lenses according to your eye doctor’s advice

·      regularly clean your contact lens case


·      shower, swim or sleep in your contact lenses

·      buy contact lenses without having your eyes checked and fitted by a professional

·      wear your contact lenses when you’re sick.

Get your eyes examined regularly

Did you know that 90% of all vision impairment is preventable? You can’t treat what you don’t know you have—so make sure you book yourself in for a comprehensive eye examination at least every two years. An eye exam might involve having a conversation about your medical history and undergoing some tests to see how well your eyes are working and whether you have any vision problems.

If you start experiencing any vision symptoms or changes, make an appointment to see your eye doctor right away. Early treatment for many eye conditions can save your sight—but if you leave it too late, the problem may become untreatable.

Wear the right sunglasses

Most of us know that it’s important to protect our eyes from the sun—but not all sunglasses are created equal. In fact, some sunglasses can actually damage your eyes. So how can you make the right choice for your eyes?

The important thing to keep in mind when you’re choosing a pair of sunglasses is that polarised lenses reduce glare—they may not necessarily also offer UV protection, and UV protection is what you want.

Make sure you choose sunglasses that satisfy the Australian/New Zealand Standard for 100% UV protection for Sunglasses. Please remember: the bigger the lenses, the smaller the chance those UV rays can enter through the sides of your glasses.

Wearing sunglasses that don’t offer sufficient protection can increase your risk of developing melanoma, pterygium (a fleshy overgrowth of the cornea), cataracts and basal cell carcinoma of the eyelid.

Reduce your screen time

Most of us spend a fair part of our lives looking at a screen, whether it’s a computer or a smartphone. But too much exposure to the ‘blue light’ emitted from our electronic devices can strain your vision and make your eyes feel dry and tired. Here are some easy steps you can take to limit the effect your screen time has on your eyes:

·      remember to blink regularly to keep your eyes lubricated

·      use a matte screen filter to reduce glare

·      remember the 20/20/20 rule: every 20 minutes, look up, find an object that’s around 20 feet away from you, and look at it for at least twenty seconds.

Don’t rub your eyes

Rubbing your eyes too hard or too often, in susceptible people, could lead to a condition called keratoconus, which is when your cornea thins and changes from round to cone-shaped. This causes blurry vision, astigmatism and short sightedness. If detected, there is treatment to stop the progression of keratoconus.

If you frequently rub your eyes, you may also be suffering from allergies or an eye infection.

Remember there’s no better time to adopt better eye health habits than the start of the new year.

Book an appointment with Dr David Robinson, Sydney Ophthalmologist, or call the Sydney Laser and Vision Centre on 1800 25 20 20 to get your eyes checked today.