Now is the perfect time for Australians to think about their sight, with Thursday 10 October marking World Sight Day for 2019.
This year’s World Sight Day theme is Vision First – and with around 90% of blindness and vision impairment preventable or treatable if detected early enough, Glaucoma Australia is reminding Australians to put their vision first by having their eyes checked.
Glaucoma is the leading cause of avoidable blindness worldwide, affecting over 300,000 Australians, yet it is estimated that 50% of those living with glaucoma are undiagnosed.
People who are aged over 50, have a family history of glaucoma or are of Asian or African descent have a greater risk of developing glaucoma, and should make having an eye test one of their health priorities.
Eye tests can be arranged directly through an optometrist, by referral to an ophthalmologist, or by speaking with your GP, and are often covered by Medicare.
“As we approach the year 2020, it’s never been a more appropriate time for people to put vision first to keep their eyesight 20/20” said Vision 2020 Australia CEO, Judith Abbott.
Key tips for looking after eye health:
• Make sure you have a regular eye check, especially if you are over 40
• Wear a hat and sunglasses when outside
• Wear eye protection when playing sports like squash, or performing hazardous tasks
• Do not smoke, or quit smoking
• Maintain a healthy diet with regular exercise
• Manage your diabetes (bloods glucose, blood pressure and cholesterol levels)
World Sight Day is an annual day of awareness to focus global attention on blindness and vision impairment, and is held on the second Thursday in October each year.