So yesterday was World sight day with the call to action being Eye Care Everywhere.
This one concerns each and every one of us because we all utilize our peepers greatly; rely on them for most of life’s activities. I don’t think any seeing being would like to become blind at any point in life, though sometimes it is inevitable but sometimes blindness comes because of poor eye care.
There are some common eye defects that we are used to, the myopia, hyperopia, and astigmatism. But many people below the age of 40 are unaware of presbyopia. I wasn’t aware of that defect till the young female ophthalmologist told me in her small quiet voice – ‘you have presbyopia’. I was like what is that? And she launched into an even more bizarre explanation.
Presbyopia is an age-related eye defect, like having aging eyes, Lolz. Further research showed me that it is a condition whereby your sight gradually loses its ability to focus easily. The eye lens loses its natural flexibility. It usually occurs in those above 40 and, so why am I diagnosed with presbyopia way before 40?
The ophthalmologist opined that it could be as a result of my lifestyle or other underlying ailment. Presbyopia before 40 is known as premature presbyopia.
Presbyopia is mostly as a result of aging but premature presbyopia could be attributed to the following factors –
- Hyperopia (far sightedness) and other eye diseases and trauma
- Cardiovascular diseases
- Poor blood flow
- Multiple sclerosis
Other factors that put you at greater risk of premature presbyopia include
- Drugs – antidepressants. Anxiety drugs, antihistamines, diuretics and antispasmodics.
- Being female
- Unhealthy diet
- Gadget Screens – smartphones, computers, television.
The last point is probably why premature presbyopia is on the increase.
Some Warning Signs of Presbyopia
- Difficulty in focusing on reading or other close-up work like knitting.
- Blurred vision during the above activities at normal distance.
- Difficulty reading fine prints
- Abnormal sensitivity to light
- Eyestrain often resulting in headache.
When I asked the ophthalmologist if the lenses she recommended will correct the premature presbyopia, she shook her head and emphatically said No, that in fact, it will deteriorate as I age. What? God forbid! It is not my portion were my exclamations. The internet yielded further ‘treatment’ as surgery.
That is why I chose to write this today – presbyopia, premature or not, has no known cure. The eyes keep getting older! Therefore, the best thing you can do for yourself is to insist on proper eye care. That is the only way to postpone or even evade presbyopia.
Tips for proper eye care to avoid presbyopia
- Visit an ophthalmologist. That is the first step so as to maintain good eye health.
- Eat healthy and balanced diet rich in vitamins A, C and E. Carrot works wonders for the eyes.
- Wear sunglasses or hats to minimize UV rays.
- Minimise your exposure to screen lights. Don’t stare at the screen for hours on end. Take long breaks from your phones and computers.
- Wear glasses or have screen guards on your gadgets and minimize the light especially when in a dimly lit environment.
- Avoid staring at the phone under the sun.
- Exercise your eyes often.
- Watch your alcohol intake and smoking.
Living healthy is a way of life, and should not be seen as a chore or a passing trend. Healthy living should be a fun part of our usual lifestyle.
Illness of any kind is a bore; it destabilizes the whole system, even something as simple as a headache. So why put yourself through all these avoidable hassles that you can easily avoid by living a healthy life.
Healthy living is not just about eating the right diet and exercising. It also involves positive and quality lifestyle built on a positive self-image.
The benefits of healthy living are innumerable; no book can contain it, but let’s share few of them here.
Personally, the basic benefit I derive from healthy living is dwelling in a state of constant happiness. I found out that things that used to stress me out and give me those anxiety bouts no longer have that effect on me. I can easily shrug them off and move on rather than dwell on them and let them destroy my inner peace and happiness.
Living healthy gives you inner peace and happiness.
For most people, this is the primary reason for their following a healthy lifestyle. Once you are eating healthy, exercising and having a cheerful disposition as much as possible, you considerably cut down the risk of so many diseases, including chronic ones like cancer, hypertension and diabetes. In essence, it enhances longevity. This alone is enough to make you change to a healthy lifestyle.
Living healthy boosts self –confidence because you are in a better shape physically, emotionally and psychologically. All these added together boosts one’s self-esteem. In fact, it gives you the bragging power knowing that you possess enough self-control to pursue a healthy lifestyle and stick to it.
Tips for Healthy Living
Drink up lots of water, not carbonated and artificial drinks mind you. Rather than take that chilled bottle of coke, take water, it is healthier and improves your health.
Water is a natural cleanser, helping to remove toxins from the system and transport nutrients and oxygen through the body. You can never go wrong with water intake.
Once you notice that you are thirsty, your lips are dry, your urine is concentrated, you are probably dehydrated already. Drink up!
Lots of vegetables and fruits that you eat will provide your body with the vitamins and minerals it needs.
Eating lots of fatty and starchy food however gives you lots of calories which your body does not even need. They pile up and turn to fat and diseases. Fibers also work wonders for your body though they must be eaten in proportion.
Steer clear of fad diets and processed food, sugary and salty foods, they are the greatest killers. Preparing your own meals is much healthier.
Instant deletion of every form of negativity – people, situations, job, environment, – will purge your system of negativity, leaving you happier and freer. All these negativities are toxic to the body and should be deleted for a healthier you.
Avoid Unhealthy Choices
Alcohol, cigarette, sedentary lifestyle, and unsafe sex are wrong choices. There is nothing good about them. Do not compromise your life with unhealthy choices that you can do without.
Movement they say is life. Exercise keeps you in good form and gives you a certain glow and joy. The benefits are a thousand and one.
You can go for whatever kind of exercise that you are comfortable with or the ones that you like more. This will help get you inspired to go for your exercise routine.
Go for Check up
Occasional visits to your medical doctor will keep many ailments away. If there is one lurking around, it can be discovered on time and treated because some diseases will not give you symptoms till it is too late. Your Doctor will also advise you on how to live healthier and you can go home with peace of mind.
There are many other tips that will assist you to achieve a healthy lifestyle and you probably know most of these already.
Do not drink and drive, use your seat belts, improve your posture, meditate, get enough sleep, socialize, and on and on. Please follow these tips, they are incredibly simple if you really understand their benefits.
Go on, live healthy, stay healthy, live happier, and live longer.
Are you even aware of how bad the CHANGE is Dear Mr. President?
Remember that during your campaign you promised to deliver to us a better Nigeria, a Nigeria flowing with milk, honey, peace and prosperity? You promised us CHANGE Mr. President and so, gullible and eager Nigerians voted for you, chanting SAI BABA! SAI CHANGE! Thinking you stand for all the things we yearn for.
Dear Mr. President, I am sure you will feel you have accomplished some things in your fourteen months in office, which might probably be true. What with the selective fight against corruption, your transparency moves, the fight against boko haram even as the Chibok girls are yet to be returned home, and so on and so forth.
Now, here are the CHANGES I see every day on Nigerian streets and villages Dear Mr. President – I see HUNGER AND STARVATION. Mr. President, your children are dying of malnutrition. Maybe a visit to a couple of villages can give you a shove in the right direction and open your eyes to the fact that the rate of hunger in the land has become an emergency health issue. I am writing this as one who has seen these sufferings first hand, but there is really very little I can do compared to what you, Dear President can do. I was told by those that witnessed this level of malnutrition during the Nigerian Civil war that what is happening now is beginning to be like what was experienced during the war.
According to UNICEF, over 2.5 million Nigerian children are suffering from severe acute malnutrition. However, no amount of quoting figures can propel you to action faster than a firsthand experience.
The direct effect of malnutrition is disease. Maybe a tour of ‘chemist shops’, local health centers, maternity homes and hospitals can make you sit up faster Dear Mr. President? The number of children severely ill from malnutrition is simply overwhelming. They are malnourished and thus have little or no resistance against diseases. Malaria kills them faster because they cannot fight it with their low immunity and lack of money. From the clinic where I am, the picture is disheartening. Children of various ages come in looking pale, anemic and hungry. The parents delay coming to the clinic till the worst moment but would rather use local herbs or visit quacks, guess why? Even after treatment, recovery is delayed for too long and sometimes there is relapse because there is no proper nutrition to sustain them. Anemia, kwashiorkor and the likes are staring us in the face.
The cost of living has gone so high Dear Mr. President, that parents cannot feed their children properly. When you are able to buy the food, the cost of kerosene suggests to you that you might want to try eating the food raw. Basically, people in the rural areas rely on kerosene and firewood for cooking and for the fact that we are in the rainy season, kerosene becomes the ultimate for those that can afford a kerosene stove and a liter of kerosene sells for #250. Do the Mathematics.
The worst thing that can happen to a mother is to watch her child die when mere #2000 in her purse would have saved that child’s life. And in case you think these poor folks are lazy, I will inform you that just one of them works harder than your entire House of Assembly members put together in a given day. They till the lands with their hands, nurture it, all without Government subsidy. They undertake different forms of hard labour that push them to early graves just to eke out a living, yet it hardly provides three-square meals for their families. Some of them have brothers and aunties that used to assist from the cities, but they have been sacked due to the austerity measures in the land.
Dear Mr. President, if the Nigerian masses cannot feel any positive impact of your administration, if all they see and feel are anger, depression, hunger, starvation, diseases, death, crimes, unemployment, anarchy, chaos and terrorism, then permit me to say Mr. President that your administration is woefully failing Nigerians. If you tell us that more refineries are now functional, yet we cannot afford the petroleum products, you tell us that looted funds are being recovered, that so and so country gave you so and so billion dollars, yet Nigeria is more broke than ever before, that is bullshit if you ask me. If you say you are subsidizing agriculture, yet the local farmer cannot even buy fertilizer, that you are giving us laudable economic policies still we cannot afford to buy ordinary fish from the market, what do you call that Sir? CHANGE?
I wrote this post 14 months into this administration. Now this administration is gradually nearing its end. The only change si far has been the worsening of the CHANGE.
Now we have added Fulani herdsmen, missing Maze, money-swallowing animals and so on to the Change.
Another May 29th is here, which way Nigeria?