5 ways to keep your eyes healthy after age 60

Adults in their late 30s and early 40s often start noticing changes in their vision, requiring eye drops or prescription eyewear to correct the problem. These changes can become more pronounced over the next 20 to 30 years. Review five ways to keep your eyes healthy after age 60.

  1. Schedule eye exams – After age 65, schedule an eye exam every one to two years. The eye doctor will evaluate your vision. They will look for subtle changes that could be signs of eye disease, such as age-related macular degeneration or diabetic retinopathy, and serious medical issues, including high blood pressure or high cholesterol, that can lead to heart disease.
  2. Watch for low vision – Adults may develop low vision due to eye injuries or disease. Common signs include blurry vision, especially in the middle and sides of the eye, or difficulty seeing at night. If you notice these vision changes, contact your eye doctor. There are many resources available to help you adjust and live with low vision.
  3. Protect eyes – Prevent eye injuries by wearing safety glasses when working on projects involving chemicals or objects that could become lose and hit your eyes. When spending time outdoors, wear sunglasses with 100 percent ultraviolet protection. Eye injuries also can occur in the home when falling or tripping. Make sure area rugs don’t slide, move cords out of walking paths, and tighten hand railings on the stairs.
  4. Exercise regularly – It helps keep muscles limber, and it’s good for your eyes. Five days a week, engage in low-impact exercises, such as yoga, swimming or walking. These activities will improve blood circulation and help control weight, reducing the risk of diabetic retinopathy.
  5. Get restful sleep – Many older adults experience insomnia. If this happens, don’t ignore it. Talk with your doctor or health professional about treatment options. Your eyes need at least seven hours of restful sleep each night to relax, relubricate and clean out dirt and allergens that can collect during the day.

American Academy of Ophthalmology
American Optometric Association