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Prevent Blindness has declared April as Women’s Eye Health and Safety Month

March 29, 2023 — Prevent Blindness has declared April as Women’s Eye Health and Safety Month. The nonprofit offers a variety of expert-reviewed free resources on a range of eye health issues and eye safety topics, including contact lensescosmetics, and ultraviolet protection.
The new “Women’s Eye Health and Safety Episode,” part of the Prevent Blindness Focus on Eye Health Expert Series, features Janine Austin Clayton, M.D., FARVO, associate director for research on women’s health and director, office of research on women’s health at the National Institutes of Health. Dr. Clayton will share her thoughts on a variety of women’s eye health issues including equitable access to eye care, addressing the impact of vision loss on mental health, and more.
According to the National Eye Institute, 2 in 3 people living with blindness or vision problems are women, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shares that two-thirds of the 45 million contact lens wearers in the U.S. are women. Women have a higher prevalence of many major vision problems including age-related macular degeneration, cataracts, dry eye, glaucoma, refractive errors, and thyroid eye disease. Additionally, the American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO) states that women are more susceptible to autoimmune diseases than men, many of which affect vision, like lupus and Sjögren’s syndrome.
An increase in hormones while pregnant may cause changes to vision. In most cases, those conditions are temporary, and vision will return to normal after delivery. Women who are perimenopausal or already in menopause may also experience vision changes, and dry eye occurs at double the rate in postmenopausal women, the AAO shares.
“Women lead incredibly busy and diverse lives—from running companies to running households. It is critical for women to take care of their own health needs, including eye health, to ensure they can be there for others,” said Kira Baldonado, vice president of public health and policy at Prevent Blindness. “We encourage women to be a model for good health by making their eye care a priority today to ensure healthy vision for years to come.”

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Prevent Blindness Founded in 1908, Prevent Blindness is the nation's leading volunteer eye health and safety organization dedicated to fighting blindness and saving sight. Focused on promoting a continuum of vision care, Prevent Blindness touches the lives of millions of people each year through public and professional education, advocacy, certified vision screening and training, community and patient service programs and research. These services are made possible through the generous support of the American public. Together with a network of affiliates, Prevent Blindness is committed to eliminating preventable blindness in America.

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