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National Eye Health Week 2020

This week is National Eye Health Week (NEHW). It runs from 21 to 27 September, promoting the importance of good eye health and the need for regular eye tests for all.

David Cartwright, chair of Eye Health UK, the charity responsible for organising the National Eye Health Week (NEHW) campaign explains: “NEHW provides a unique opportunity for everyone involved in optics to join forces and inspire people to take positive steps to keep their eyes and vision healthy as well as preventing avoidable sight loss.

“Delays in people seeking treatment during lockdown and reduced capacity in optical practice mean it’s important that those with greatest need are prioritised. This year’s National Eye Health Week will seek to mobilise those that are experiencing problems with their vision or eye health and encourage them to seek help from their local eye care practitioner.”

Throughout the week watch out for advice about looking after your eyes and the 10 Best Eye Health Habits. These include: eating a healthy, balanced diet, not smoking, watching your weight and wearing sunglasses to protect your eyes from UV damage.

Each day of the week will feature a different theme. Themes for 2020 include: Ageing eyes, screen use and kids’ eye health.

Visit the Vision Matters website for top tips and resources to look after your eyes including a podcast, new online eye health calculator and vision simulator.

If you notice a change to your vision or have any concerns about your eye health contact your local optician.

Why not tell us about your local optician to help improve services. How was the service your received? Did you struggle to get seen during lockdown? Tell us your story here.

close uo of a woman's eye

National Glaucoma Week – Get Eye Wise

The International Glaucoma Association (IGA) is focusing on the impact of dry eye syndrome for people with glaucoma during International Glaucoma Week 4 to 10 June 2018. Dry eye syndrome can have a debilitating effect on a person’s quality of life yet is little understood. Dry eye syndrome affects 50 to 60 per cent of people with glaucoma and one in three people over the age of 65. It is a disorder where the eyes don’t make enough tears, or the tears evaporate too quickly. This can make eyes feel dry, scratchy and irritated or watery, and feel heavy and tired by the end of the day. In severe cases people report pain, discomfort and depression, and its impact has been compared with that of angina, dialysis and disabling hip fractures.

Commenting on the campaign, Karen Osborn of the IGA says: “Dry eye has an adverse impact on quality of life, with people saying that they cannot read, find the sunlight painful, feel unhappy and can’t even open their eyes long enough to do certain daily tasks. We want to encourage anyone who has aggravating dry eye symptoms to seek the advice of their pharmacist or GP and it is important that people with glaucoma raise any dry eye symptoms with their ophthalmologist as a change of glaucoma treatment to a preservative free eye drop often helps to reduce the symptoms of dry eye syndrome”.

Glaucoma affects around 700,000 people in the UK and the majority of people will initially be treated with medical eye drops. Managing both dry eye and glaucoma effectively is important, but challenging. Both conditions are long-term but manageable.

 

What are the most common symptoms of dry eye?

  • Heavy tired feeling of the eyes
  • Difficulty reading or working on the computer
  • Blurriness of vision
  • Excessive watering of the eyes
  • Discomfort when wearing contact lenses
  • Stinging or burning of the eyes
  • A sandy or gritty feeling in the eyes
  • Pain and redness of the eyes

 

Tips to help

Drink lots of water which helps tear production

Get enough sleep

Avoid alcohol and spicy foods

Avoid smoking and smoky areas

Wear glasses or sunglasses on windy days

Avoid air-conditioned environments and draughts

Consider using a humidifier

Blink more frequently when using a computer screen or reading

Look away from computer screens every 30 minutes

 

Download the free IGA Dry Eye Syndrome Leaflet for more information.

Events

National Eye Health Event

National Eye Health Week takes place between 23 and 29 September to promote the importance of good eye health and make people aware of the network of support services available locally.

Northumberland County Blind Association is holding an information event in Morpeth where you can get free information and advice from the following sight loss organisations:

 

  • Northumberland County Blind Association
  • BID Services
  • RNIB
  • Eye Clinic Professionals 

 

The Northumberland County Blind team will be available for one to one demonstrations of a range of vision aids, some of which are available free or for a small donation.

 

 

 

 

Glaucoma Support Session Hexham

As part of national Eye Health Week, the International Glaucoma Association is holding information events in Alnwick and Hexham this September. If you or someone you know is living with glaucoma, come along to get some support and information. Refreshments will be provided.

If you would like more details or to book a place please contact Hannah Morrow on: 07854 821911 or email h.morrow@iga.org.uk.

Glaucoma Support Session Alnwick

As part of national Eye Health Week, the International Glaucoma Association is holding information events in Alnwick and Hexham this September. If you or someone you know is living with glaucoma, come along to get some support and information. Refreshments will be provided.

If you would like more details or to book a place please contact Hannah Morrow on: 07854 821911 or email h.morrow@iga.org.uk.