February is Low Vision Awareness Month

Jo-Carolyn Goode | 2/3/2014, 12:40 p.m.
When you think of all the things you need to keep track of in order to stay healthy, do your ...
February is low vision

When you think of all the things you need to keep track of in order to stay healthy, do your eyes come to the top of the list? If not, they should! Men’s Health Network (MHN) is pleased to support and promote February as Low Vision Awareness Month by encouraging men and their families to protect their vision and their health.

"Men suffer from 73 percent of the total number of eye injuries that occur in the US, according to a survey conducted by the American Academy of Ophthalmology (Academy) and the American Society of Ocular Trauma (ASOT),” said Joel Potasznik, MD, Ophthalmology and member of the Board of Advisors, Men’s Health Network. “Some 52 percent of all injuries happen at home. It is very important for men and boys to understand proper eye safety when working at home or engaging in sports."

In efforts to promote February as Low Vision Awareness Month, MHN has shared a valuable resource booklet, Open Your Eyes, Protect Your Vision…and Your Health (http://www.menshealthnetwork.org/library/blueprinteye.pdf), which clarifies the connection between eye health and overall health. It also goes over some common eye diseases, disorders and injuries

Open Your Eyes, Protect Your Vision…and Your Health suggests a few tips for protecting eye health:

Eating a healthy diet with lots of fruits and vegetables

Wearing sunglasses and hats when in sunlight

Limiting your alcohol intake

Getting regular eye check ups

Maintaining a healthy weight by exercising regularly

Quitting smoking, as it has been linked to risk of developing age-related macular degeneration and cataracts

Always wearing your protective eye goggles when necessary

According to AFB AccessWorld Magazine website (http://www.afb.org/afbpress/pub.asp?DocID=aw140201), in the United States, the most common causes of low vision are age-related macular degeneration (AMD), glaucoma, cataracts, and diabetic retinopathy. People can also be born with conditions such as albinism or optic nerve damage that can result in low vision. Low vision can have an impact on people of all ages.

AMD is a leading cause of vision loss, affecting more than 2 million Americans age 50 and older. Low vision aids can make the most of remaining vision. For more information on Low Vision visit www.preventblindness.org.

Men's Health Network (MHN) is a national non-profit organization whose mission is to reach men, boys, and their families where they live, work, play, and pray with health prevention messages and tools, screening programs, educational materials, advocacy opportunities, and patient navigation. Learn more about MHN at www.menshealthnetwork.org and follow us on Twitter @MensHlthNetwork and facebook.com/menshealthnetwork