Get Out of the Dark With Routine Eye Exams

Five words or less(NewsUSA) – Every five seconds, someone goes blind, but in 80 percent of the cases, the blindness is preventable. Blindness from eye disease is often treatable, but only if it’s noticed early through routine eye exams.
To help prevent avoidable vision loss, EyeCare America, a public service program of the Foundation of the American Academy of Ophthalmology, is offering free eye exams by volunteer ophthalmologists dedicated to a worthy cause. Ophthalmologists are medical doctors who specialize in eye and vision care, from glasses to complex surgeries.
“More than 45 million people worldwide are blind,” says Richard P. Mills, MD. “In many cases, the most severe eye diseases offer no warning signs, until it’s too late and vision loss is irreversible. But regular eye exams can help you catch problems early, while there is still time to treat conditions and prevent permanent loss of sight.”
EyeCare America provides year-round eye exams at no out-of-pocket cost to people age 65 and over. Eye exams are provided by a corps of nearly 7,000 EyeCare America ophthalmologists across the U.S. and Puerto Rico.
People who are interested
in the program can visit www.eyecareamerica.org to see if they are eligible. The organization’s online referral center also enables friends and family members to find out instantly if their loved ones are eligible to be matched with an ophthalmologist.
While some eye diseases, such as cataracts, progress slowly and offer symptoms, serious eye problems, such as glaucoma, age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and diabetic retinopathy, often offer few or no warning signs. They can be caught and treated in the early stages through a medical eye exam when preventive care is still possible. By the time these conditions do begin to show symptoms, such as blurred vision or black spots across the field of vision, often vision loss is irreversible.
EyeCare America provides services to medically under-served seniors and those at a high risk for eye disease. Since its inception, EyeCare America has helped over 1.5 million people.

Get the Facts About Cataracts and Surgery

Five words or less(NewsUSA) – Though cataracts are the leading cause of vision loss worldwide, myths persist about their cause and treatment. Cataracts affect nearly 22 million Americans age 40 and older. By age 80, more than half of all Americans will have cataracts, according to the National Eye Institute.
“Cataracts are not preventable, but they are treatable,” said Richard P. Mills, MD, “and the best way to ensure vision stays healthy for a lifetime is to schedule a visit with an ophthalmologist. More than 90 percent of the people who have cataract surgery regain useful vision.”
As the eye’s lens, located behind the pupil, grows older, its cells die and accumulate. The result is blurred vision and “fuzzy” images. Eye injuries, certain medications and diseases such as diabetes are also known to cause cataracts. In the early stages, stronger lighting and eyeglasses may lessen vision problems caused by cataracts. But at a certain point, cataract surgery — the most frequently performed operation in the country — may be necessary. There are four common cataract myths to dispel:
* MYTH 1: Eye drops can prevent or dissolve cataracts.
o FACT: The Food and Drug Administration has not approved any drops that cure or delay cataracts. Since cataracts are not a substance, there is nothing for the drops to dissolve.
* MYTH 2: Close-up tasks like reading or sewing make cataracts worse.
o FACT: Cataracts are not caused by how people use their eyes. However, cataracts likely become more noticeable during close work. One sign of a cataract is the need for more light to do the same activities.
* MYTH 3: Cataracts are reversible.
o FACT: The lens naturally clouds as it ages; this process is unavoidable and irreversible. But its progress can be slowed by quitting smoking, eating a balanced diet and wearing sunglasses.
If you are age 65 and older and you think you have cataracts, you may qualify for a free eye exam. The eye exams are provided by a program called EyeCare America, an organization that works with nearly 7,000 volunteer ophthalmologists across the U.S. and Puerto Rico. Visit www.eyecareamerica.org to see if you or a loved one qualifies for this care.

Eyeing the Window to Your Health

Five words or less(NewsUSA) – Some say the eyes are windows to the soul. But did you know that the eye disease age-related macular degeneration (AMD) can also indicate increased risk of heart attack or stroke?
EyeCare America, a public service program of the Foundation of the American Academy of Ophthalmology, is raising awareness about AMD and its potential “window to health” through your eyes.
Imagine seeing black holes in your field of vision instead of your family, your garden or your favorite book. More than 10 million Americans suffer from AMD. AMD occurs when abnormal blood vessels grow under the eye’s macula, where the sharpest, central vision occurs. It’s the leading cause of vision loss for those 65 and older. While not curable, AMD’s advancement can be delayed and treated, leading to many more years of healthy vision for those who detect it early through an eye exam.
This same blood vessel damage can also indicate risk for heart attack or stroke — as much as 8 to 10 times greater. An Australian study noted that among those whose health was followed for a number of years, subjects with AMD had more than double the incidence of heart attack or stroke.
Eye exams let patients know of increased risk for other serious health problems.
EyeCare America provides eye exams at no out-of-pocket cost to people 65 and older and offers online medication assistance information. Eye exams are provided by a corps of nearly 7,000 volunteer ophthalmologists across the U.S. and Puerto Rico.
Those interested in the program can visit www.eyecareamerica.org to see if they are eligible. The organization’s online referral center also enables friends and family members to find out instantly whether their loved ones are eligible to be matched with a volunteer ophthalmologist.
EyeCare America is designed for people who are U.S. senior citizens or legal residents who haven’t seen an ophthalmologist in three or more years. Additional information can be found at www.eyecareamerica.org.

Don’t Lose Sight of the Eye Health ?ABCs’

Five words or less(NewsUSA) – Although regular eye examinations are vital for the treatment of vision health needs, many people do not seek eye care. According to the world’s largest, on-going health survey, the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System, which analyzed why people do not seek eye exams, the most common reasons given among 40-64 year olds were cost or lack of health insurance. Among those aged 65 and older, the most common reason was no perceived need.
“It is common for people to wait for symptoms before making doctor appointments,” said Richard P. Mills, MD, MPH. “However, some eye diseases can damage sight before any warning signs are noticed. Getting a simple painless eye exam early could save your sight.”
If you are 65 or older, EyeCare America, the public service program of the Foundation of the American Academy of Ophthalmology, provides eye exams at no out-of-pocket cost through volunteer ophthalmologists. To see if you are eligible to receive a referral for an eye exam and care, visit www.eyecareamerica.org. This online referral center also enables friends and family members to find out instantly if their loved ones are eligible to be matched with one of EyeCare America’s nearly 7,000 volunteers.
Eye health education is a lifelong process. EyeCare America reminds everyone that It’s never too late to learn how to take better care of your eyes, starting with these “ABCs”:
Activate your lifestyle. What’s good for your whole body is also good for your eyes. Get regular exercise and eat a diet rich in fruits, vegetables and whole grains, avoiding fats and sweets.
Book an appointment today with an ophthalmologist for a full eye exam, or visit www.eyecareamerica.org to see if you are eligible.
Continue to see your doctor according to follow-up care recommendations to catch and treat eye diseases early!

Keep an Eye Out For Unique Watches

Five words or less(NewsUSA) – Watches are a traditional gift for a reason. They’re one of the few accessories appropriate for both men and women, they serve a useful function and they’re classic enough to become family heirlooms.
But modern consumers don’t want gifts that appear generic — they want gifts that appeal to their lifestyles and personalities. So, how can you acknowledge their interests while still giving them a timeless, classic gift?
If there’s a technophile or environmentalist in your family,
finding the perfect watch might be easier than you think. Citizen Eco-Drive (www.citizenwatch.com) offers watches so technologically advanced — and eco-friendly — you’ll never need to change a watch battery again.
Citizen Eco-Drive technology converts light from any natural or artificial source into energy. The watches store the energy in a permanently rechargeable lithium-ion cell that starts recharging the second it is exposed to light — this means that the watch can run forever. The watch contains a power reserve so it can run continuously for at least six months, even in the dark.
Because the battery is permanently rechargeable, it never needs to be replaced or thrown out. Citizen Watch Company estimates that, over the past 15 years, it has prevented over 15 million batteries from being manufactured and subsequently thrown out.
The technological advances don’t begin and end with the
battery. The newest Citizen Eco-Drive radio-controlled analog world timer, the World Perpetual A-T, has radio-controlled accuracy perfection in North America, the United Kingdom, Europe, Japan and China. Both sport and dress models are available.
The Citizen Eco-Drive Paladion features 26 diamonds and is water resistant to 100 meters. Citizen’s Ladies’ watches appeal both to environmentalists and fashionistas, as mother-of-pearl dials, diamond-embellished cases and sport chronographs are all available.
For more information, visit www.citizenwatch.com.

Engineers Eye Job Opportunities In the Power Industry

Five words or less(NewsUSA) – The need in the United States to expand the power infrastructure to meet the anticipated heightened demand for electricity could grow the job …

Over-the-Counter Reading Glasses

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<p>(<a href=NewsUSA) – Chances are, you’ve heard someone blame their poor vision on old age. Although this statement holds some truth, it doesn’t tell the whole story.

As the eye ages, its lens hardens and loses the ability to shape, making it harder to focus on nearby objects. Many adults will eventually develop this condition. Known as presbyopia, most cases become noticeable around age 40 and continue to worsen until age 60 — which leads to the notion that old age causes bad eyes.

Other factors can also lead to vision problems, so adults experiencing vision changes should discuss all of their symptoms with their doctor, as well as any life changes, medications or supplements. A basic eye exam is all you need to diagnose presbyopia.

Luckily, presbyopia treatments are easy and inexpensive. Many patients don’t even need prescription glasses. Over-the-counter reading glasses are safe, effective and affordable.

“Reading glasses assist the natural lens in focusing on nearby objects by doing some of its work,” explains ophthalmologist Dr. Ernest Sutcliffe.

Dr. Sutcliffe recommends Magnivision glasses, which come in 300 styles and are available at drug stores, mass retailers and supermarkets nationwide. Magnivision glasses offer quality acrylic lenses designed to reduce distortion.

The company even makes reading sunglasses, for those who want to read at the beach or anywhere else outdoors. Magnivision SunReaders combine the protection of sunglasses with enhanced magnification. The bottom segment of the lens magnifies while providing maximum UVA/UVB protection.

No one can prevent presbyopia, but taking certain actions can help protect vision. For example, scheduling regular eye exams, controlling chronic conditions like diabetes and high blood pressure, wearing protective eyewear during sports and in the sun and eating a nutritious diet can help maintain eye health. Using adequate lighting while reading or doing other close-up work can also help ease eyestrain.

Vision Screenings Protect The Apple of Your Eye

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<p>(<a href=NewsUSA) – School-age children receive regular vision screenings, but childhood blindness can start long before elementary school. Early detection makes treatments more effective, so parents should have their children’s vision checked in preschool.

Ambylopia, or lazy eye, is one of the most common disorders detected in young children. Lazy eye, which occurs when one eye is significantly stronger than the other, affects two to three of every 100 children. If left untreated, the weaker eye tends to wander inward or outward, leading to permanent vision impairment.

Any factor that causes eyes to blur, cross or turn out can lead to lazy eye. The most common cause is strabismus, a muscle imbalance that prevents eyes from coordinating their movements. Congenital problems, like cataracts or oddly shaped eyes, can also lead to lazy eye.

Most of the time, conservative treatments like corrective eyewear, eye patches or eye drops can fix lazy eye. Droopy eyes, crossed eyes or eyes that are fixed outward might require surgical correction. Treatments typically start improving vision after a few weeks or months — if the problem is caught early in life.

Some programs aim to screen young children for vision problems. For example, Lions Clubs International Foundation (LCIF) established a preschool vision screening program in 1999. Trained volunteers screen children ages one through five. If they see a problem, the volunteers refer the child to an eye doctor.

So far, Lions volunteers have screened 1 million children in the United States and Taiwan. Volunteers refer about 6 percent of the children they see. Of those, approximately 65 percent have a vision disorder that can cause lazy eye.

Parents need to schedule eye screenings. Newborns should have their eyes examined at every wellness visit. Children with a family history of vision impairment, either childhood or adult, should see an eye specialist by 18 months. By age 3, all children should see an eye specialist on a regular basis.

For more information, visit www.lionsclubs.org.

Protect Your Little Leaguer’s Eyes

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<p>(<a href=NewsUSA) – As the weather warms and children gear up for little league t-ball, baseball and softball, parents know to ask certain questions. “Do you have your glove, your bat, your baseball?” But many parents let one piece of equipment slide — protective eyewear.

Proper protective eyewear is one of the most important pieces of sports equipment your child will use. Every year, Americans experience 40,000 eye injuries during sports and recreational activities. Most of these injuries occur in athletes under the age of 25. Using protective eyewear could prevent 90 percent of those injuries.

America’s favorite pastime, baseball, is the most common cause of sports-related eye injury in children 14 and under. The most common eye injury? Getting hit with a ball. Other sports known for causing eye injuries include softball, basketball, field hockey, ice hockey and football.

The American Optometric Association (AOA) urges parents to protect their children’s sight by having them wear proper protective eyewear while playing sports. The AOA cautions that everyday frames and lenses do not meet the minimum requirements for impact resistance in most sports. The lack of proper protective eyewear can turn a small collision into a sight-threatening injury.

The AOA offers these sports safety tips:

– Have your child’s eyes examined. A comprehensive eye exam can detect vision problems like nearsightedness, farsightedness and others that could hinder performance and lead to injuries.

– Ensure that your child has certified protective eyewear that will protect against injury and ultraviolet radiation. Sports-related eyewear is tested to meet rigid standards, and some have been independently verified and have received the AOA Seal of Acceptance.

– Set a good example. Eye injuries happen to adults, too. Don’t forget to put on your protective eyewear when participating in sports or recreational activities.

For more information, visit www.aoa.org.

Allergies: A Look at Preventing, Living With Eye Problems

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<p>(<a href=NewsUSA) – Approximately fifty million Americans suffer allergy symptoms like runny or itchy noses, sneezing, coughing and sinus infection. But an unlucky 4 percent of allergy sufferers experience most of their symptoms in their eyes.

In eye allergies, also called “allergic conjunctivitis,” exposure to allergens like dust mites, pet dander, pollen and mold inflame the tissue that lines the inside of the eyelid. Symptoms include burning, itchiness, tearing, swelling and a gritty sensation. Some patients report blurred vision and fatigue. Eyes can become so painful and irritated that they disrupt everyday life.

What’s the best way to avoid eye allergies? Avoid eye allergens. Of course, it’s impossible to completely avoid allergens like dust. For this reason, most people turn to over-the-counter or prescription medications.

Eye allergies can be especially challenging for Americans who wear contact lenses. Some people will simply avoid wearing contacts during allergy season. Others opt for allergy-friendly lenses, like daily disposables. In particular, one-day contact lenses avoid build-up and eliminate exposure to irritating cleaning and disinfecting solutions.

The American Optometric Association offers the following tips for Americans living with eye allergies:

– Don’t touch or rub your eyes. Rubbing your eyes can damage tissue. Also, if you have anything on your hands, you risk getting it in your eyes.

– Wash your hands often with soap and water. If you do happen to touch your eyes with your hands, it is safer if your hands are clean.

– Wash your bed linens and pillowcases often. At least once a week, wash your sheets and pillowcases in hot water and detergent. The hot water will help remove airborne allergens that have fallen on you sheets and will kill dust mites.

– Avoid wearing eye makeup. Cosmetics can cause eye allergy symptoms or further irritate eyes that are already experiencing an allergic reaction.

– Don’t share eye makeup. You can easily transfer infectious bacteria through shared makeup tools.

You do not have to tolerate itchy, watery eyes. If you suffer from eye allergies, see your optometrist about possible treatment options. Please visit www.aoa.org to find an optometrist in your area.