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More Women than Men Are Blind & Visually-Impaired

Louisville, KY (April 4, 2011) – Women are more susceptible to developing eye conditions than men. According to Women’s Eye Health, two-thirds of blind and visually-impaired people are women. During the month of April, Dr. Mark Lynn & Associates is especially encouraging women to get an eye examination to help preserve their vision.

“Three of four people who are blind or visually-impaired have a condition that is preventable or curable,” said Dr. Mark Lynn, an optometrist who owns and oversees 15 Dr. Bizer’s VisionWorld locations across Kentucky and Indiana. “The best way to prevent vision loss is to receive regular eye exams, protect your eyes and maintain a healthy lifestyle, and that is especially true for women.”

Many of the risks that lead to cancer, heart disease and premature death are the same as those that cause blindness. Smoking, excess weight, unhealthy diet, lack of exercise and exposure to UV rays can all cause vision impairment. These are all things women should try to avoid.

In addition, some people are more at risk than others. Age, gender and socioeconomic development are also factors that could cause eyesight issues. According to the National Eye Institute, one in 28 Americans is blind or has limited vision. Prevent Blindness America reports of the 3.6 million Americans who are age 40 and over suffering from a visual impairment, 2.3 million are women.

Macular degeneration, cataracts, glaucoma and diabetic retinopathy are some of the more common eye diseases to cause vision loss. Others include: autoimmune disease, toxoplasmosis, trachoma and other infectious diseases, uncorrective refractive error and dry eye syndrome.

Dry eye syndrome is a condition in which not enough tears are produced. The condition is more prevalent among older women, following menopause. Women who are pregnant also may experience dry eye syndrome due to hormonal fluctuations. Doctors can prescribe eye drops and other treatments that are safe during pregnancy. Also, foods that are high in omega-3 fatty acids often help reduce dry eye. Diabetic women who are pregnant or planning to become pregnant should get a full, dilated eye exam.

“We would encourage women to make their vision a top priority,” Dr. Lynn said. “A quick trip to the doctor could help a woman keep her vision for many years to come.”

For more information, visit www.drbizersvisionworld.com or Women’s Eye Health at www.womenseyehealth.org.


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