Glaucoma And Your Lifestyle Choices: Understand Why And How They Matter

If you're aiming to reduce your overall risk of developing glaucoma or simply trying to maintain or alleviate some of your existing symptoms from a prior glaucoma diagnosis, you may want to consider taking a close look at your lifestyle choices. Believe it or not, there are certain daily tasks that you may or may not be doing that can impact your symptoms and your risk. Read on to learn more about the lifestyle choices – good and bad – that you need to be aware of when it comes to glaucoma.  

1. Exercise

Exercise or any form of physical activity is necessary for your overall health and well-being. It keeps you feeling and looking healthy, fit and confident. However, there may be a benefit of exercising that you have never considered before. There is research that suggests it may be beneficial to your eye health, specifically eye pressure and glaucoma. According to the Glaucoma Research Foundation, aerobic exercise may have the ability to reduce eye pressure while also reducing other glaucoma risk factors, such as high blood pressure and diabetes.

2. Alcohol Consumption and Smoking

It is suggested that alcohol consumption may help in lowering eye pressure, which can help prevent glaucoma. While alcohol, in moderation, can benefit your glaucoma or reduce your risk of developing it, smoking is a different story. Smoking can increase your risk of diabetes, high blood pressure and cataracts, all of which are glaucoma risk factors.

3. Caffeine Consumption

For coffee drinkers, you are about to be disappointed. If you have a family history of glaucoma or think you may be at risk for developing glaucoma in the future, you need to limit your coffee and caffeine intake. Harvard University researchers report that three cups or more a day increases your glaucoma risk, which may eventually lead to blindness and vision loss. In fact, this much caffeine a day can increase your chances of glaucoma development by two-thirds. Although more research appears to be needed on this, it is recommended that you go ahead and cut your intake of caffeine now.

These lifestyle choices are ones that can positively impact your eye health. However, if you've been diagnosed with glaucoma, they are no substitute for your medication and eye drops. Likewise, these choices are replacements of your eye exams and visits to the optometrist. It's time to make an appointment for an eye exam and check-up so that you can learn more about this topic and how choices in life may be able to positively affect the health of your vision.