World Sight Day
Fighting Blindness urges you to mind your eyes!
World Sight Day takes place this year on October 12, and Fighting Blindness is encouraging people to consider their eye health. No matter what your level of vision, it is vital to protect whatever sight you do have. Below are some helpful tips that can help:
Your eye is a complex organ that needs oxygen to survive. Smoking reduces the amount of oxygen in your bloodstream, so less oxygen reaches the eye. Less oxygen causes oxidative stress and damages the retina and causes cell death to retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) cells. Smoking is a risk factor for developing AMD and diabetic retinopathy.
Eat the Right Food
Some foods can help protect against certain eye conditions; like cataracts and AMD due to the specific nutrients they contain. These nutrients are found in many fruits and vegetables including mango, squash, broccoli, green beans, and spinach.
Regular Eye Tests
People are recommended to have an eye test every two years. A regular eye test can identify any early indications of diseases, such as cataract, glaucoma and age-related macular degeneration (AMD); some of which are treatable if caught early. An eye test can also identify other problems such as diabetes and high blood pressure for which the optometrist can refer you back to a GP.
UV light from the sun’s rays can cause damage to your eyes. Reduce risks by always wearing sunglasses when in the sun. Check your shades have a UV factor rating and block 100 per cent of UV rays. Your sunglasses should carry the CE mark, which indicates that they meet European safety standards.
Regular screen breaks
If you use a computer or mobile device, take frequent breaks from your screen – at least once an hour. Resting your eyes can help avoid headaches, eyestrain, soreness and double vision.
Know your Family Eye History
Many conditions causing sight loss are hereditary. It is important that if there is a history of sight loss in your family, you get assessed and checked. If you are clinically diagnosed with a genetic retinal condition you can have a genetic test through Target 5000 to try and establish the gene or genes responsible. For more information about Target 5000 visit www.FightingBlindness.ie or to register your interest, telephone 01 6789 004 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Fighting Blindness is an Irish patient-led charity working to cure, support and empower people affected by sight loss. For more information about World Sight Day and Fighting Blindness events and services, please call 01 6789 004 or visit www.FightingBlindness.ie.
*If you are worried about your eye health, we strongly advise that you discuss all concerns and potential treatments with your doctor.
About Fighting Blindness
Fighting Blindness is an Irish patient-led charity working to cure blindness, support people experiencing sight loss and empower patients. It does this by:
- Funding and enabling world-leading research into treatments and cures for blindness. Since 1983, Fighting Blindness has invested over €17 million in more than 90 research projects, with a particular focus on genes and gene therapy, cell technology and regenerative medicine, retinal implant technology, novel drug therapy and population studies
- Providing professional counselling through its Insight Counselling Service for people and families affected by sight loss
- Undertaking extensive activity in the area of advocacy and patient empowerment, and, specifically, for equitable access to existing treatments, novel therapies and appropriate care