Did you know that women make up the majority of the 4.4 million Americans age 40 and older who are visually impaired or blind? We explore why this is the case and explain what you can do about this problem in our newest blog.

Did you know that women make up the majority of the 4.4 million Americans age 40 and older who have a visual impairment or are blind? In response to this growing problem, Prevent Blindness has, in their words, “designated April as Women's Eye Health and Safety Month in an effort to educate women about the steps they can take today to help preserve their vision in the future.” Our staff is also taking steps to share information about women's eye health this season, as we know all too well how much any change in vision can impact the lives of our patients.

Why is Women's Eye Health An Important Subject?

According to Prevent Blindness, more women than men have age-related macular degeneration, cataracts, and glaucoma. These diseases cannot be cured, but they can be addressed and lessened with early treatment and care. Before care can be administered, an eye exam is needed to diagnose the problem.

Yet, according to online research, as many as one in four women have not received an eye exam in the past two years. Surveys also indicate that 86 percent of women incorrectly believe that men and women are equally likely to develop certain eye problems. In reality, women generally live longer than men and also have hormonal fluctuations during their lives that negatively affect their eyes. These two factors mean women are more likely to develop vision problems than men.

Why Are Women Missing Appointments?

Eye exams are any patient's best resource in obtaining good eye care - so why are so many women potentially missing appointments? In the online study, respondents reported that the cost of vision care and exams was their number one reason for not going to the doctor. This answer was provided regardless of whether or not the individual had vision insurance.

People also cited transportation issues and busy schedules as reasons for not being able to make it to their eye doctors for regular exams.

Is This A Serious Problem?

Any online study needs to be taken with a grain of salt and is ideally followed up on with official studies to provide more accurate data. However, even if more information is needed, we take these findings very seriously. Other polls and research have suggested that less than 10 percent of American women realize that women are at a greater risk of suffering permanent vision loss than men. Combined with the possibility that women are missing key appointments, this means that patients across the country may be missing important opportunities to take care of their eyes.

What Can Be Done About This Issue?

To help address this issue, we recommend that women begin committing to keeping regular eye exams in their planner. Friends and relatives can help by reminding their loved ones to visit their doctors.

We also recommend the following to all of our patients:

These actions can go a long way in helping you see clearly for years to come. If you are ready to make an appointment, or you have any specific questions we can address,contact us today to ask about available appointments with our team.

Prioritize Eye Health with Everett & Hurite.

In addressing the significant issue of women’s eye health, it becomes clear that awareness and proactive measures are key. Given that women are at a higher risk for several major eye diseases, women need to prioritize their eye health by scheduling regular eye exams, adopting healthy lifestyle choices, and staying informed about their family health history. It’s not just about preserving vision but also about enhancing the overall quality of life.

AtEverett & Hurite, we encourage all women to take their eye health seriously and would be delighted to support you on this journey towards maintaining clear and healthy vision. If you have any concerns about your eye health orneed to schedule an exam, do not hesitate to reach us. Your sight is a precious gift—protect it.

Frequently Asked Questions

How does high blood pressure affect eye health?

High blood pressure can damage the delicate blood vessels in your eyes, leading to vision problems such as diabetic retinopathy. To prevent potential eye complications, it is essential to manage high blood pressure and maintain regular eye exams.

Can autoimmune diseases affect vision?

Yes, certain autoimmune diseases, such as lupus, can affect the eyes and cause vision problems. If you have an autoimmune disease, it is important to inform your eye doctor and schedule regular eye exams to monitor it.

Is it safe to wear contact lenses?

As long as you follow proper hygiene and care instructions, wearing contact lenses is generally safe. However, it is essential to consult with an optometrist or ophthalmologist to ensure the proper fit and use of contact lenses for your specific eye health needs.

Why do I have blurred vision?

There are many possible causes of blurred vision, including nearsightedness, farsightedness, astigmatism, presbyopia, and eye conditions such as cataracts or glaucoma. It is important to schedule an eye exam atEverett & Hurite; our eye doctors will help you determine the underlying cause and develop a treatment plan.