April is Women’s Eye Health and Safety Month. According to the National Eye Institute, 2 out of every 3 people living with blindness or vision problems are women. Women are affected by more eye health issues than men for a variety of factors. One factor being, women tend to live longer than men, making eye conditions associated with aging more likely. Please follow the steps below to protect your vision and eyes.
Major Eye Problems More Likely Found in Women
Age-related Macular Degeneration
Autoimmune Diseases (such as Lupus or Sjögren’s Syndrome)
Thyroid Eye Disease
Steps to Take to Protect Your Vision
Get a dilated eye exam: A dilated exam is the best way to detect vision problems early, leading to easier treatment. The exam is crucial to preventing and treating eye conditions. The National Eye Institute recommends people 60 and older receive a dilated eye exam once a year.
Wear sunglasses: Sunglasses can block both UVA and UVB radiation. Wear sunglasses even on cloudy days! Choose sunglasses that block 99 to 100 percent of both UVA and UVB radiation.
Eat eye healthy foods: Eye healthy foods include foods that are high in antioxidants, such as spinach, kale, and collard greens. Antioxidants, lutein and zeaxanthin, help prevent macular degeneration and cataracts. Additionally, fish high in omega-3 fatty acids, such as halibut, salmon, and tuna are eye-healthy foods.
Stay active: Physical activity has been proven to lower the risk of health conditions, such as diabetes and high blood pressure, that can cause eye problems.
Quit smoking: Stopping smoking benefits every part of the body, including the eyes. Stop smoking to lower your risk for eye diseases like macular degeneration and cataracts.
1. “As Women Are at Higher Risk for Eye Disease, Prevent Blindness Declares April as Women's Eye Health and Safety Month.” Prevent Blindness, Prevent Blindness, 24 Mar. 2021, https://preventblindness.org/2021-womens-eye-health-month/.
2. “Eye Health Is My Health-Celebrate Healthy Vision Month!” Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 16 July 2020, https://www.cdc.gov/visionhealth/resources/features/eye-health-my-health.html.
3. “Women and Eye Health - National Eye Institute.” National Eye Institute, National Eye Institute, https://www.nei.nih.gov/sites/default/files/2020-10/Women-and-Eye-Health_508.pdf.
4. “Women's Eye Health & Safety Month: Washington Eye Physicians.” Washington Eye Physicians & Surgeons, Medical Website Design by Glacial Multimedia, Inc., 30 June 2021, https://www.washingtoneye.com/eye-health/womens-eye-health-safety-month/.