Knowledge of Eye Health Is Lacking

With the correlation to vision that 2020 presents, the American Academy of Opthalmology encourages Americans to increase their awareness of eye health this year.

In August 2019, on behalf of the American Academy of Opthalmology, the Harris Poll conducted an online survey of more than 3,500 American adults aged 18 and older. Ophthalmologists are physicians trained to recognize eye diseases, as well as potential threats to vision. Included among the study’s key findings were the following:

 

The impacts of vision loss are also underappreciated. Another key finding of the study indicated that people are unaware that vision loss can intensify the adverse effects of other chronic illnesses. Although the majority of adults (57%) recognized that vision loss in adults increases the risk for injury and death, only one in four (24%) is aware that vision loss in adults is associated with psychological problems such as depression and social isolation.

 

“Far too often, we witness the consequences of patients entering the opthalmologist’s office too late to avoid severe vision loss,” said Anne L. Coleman, MD, PhD, president of the American Academy of Opthalmology. “In 2020, we want all Americans to have clear vision when it comes to eye health. That starts with educating yourself about eye diseases and visiting an ophthalmologist.”

Multiple studies indicate that people fear vision loss even more than they fear heart disease, cancer, stroke or other serious health conditions. These study findings indicate that Americans fear an issue with which they have little familiarity. If you have vision-related concerns, discuss them with your provider. If necessary, follow up with an ophthalmologist to receive an accurate diagnosis and develop an appropriate treatment plan.

Author
Ithaca Primary Care

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