Q: What percentage of Canadians suffer from some form of eye disease?
One in seven patients going for an eye exam has asymptomatic eye disease. Additionally, one in ten of those between 20 and 64 were diagnosed with an acute condition or one requiring ongoing monitoring in order to prevent vision loss. Studies indicate that over 4,700 British Columbians lose their vision every year.
The seriousness of these statistics cannot be understated. A large percentage of adults with vision loss are unemployed. Vision impaired adults experience double the incidence of falls, double the mortality rate, triple the incidence of depression and quadruple the incidence of hip fractures.
Q: What is the impact of unsupervised contact lens use?
Many children make visits to the emergency room due to improper use of contact lenses. Abrasions and ulcers of the cornea and conjunctivitis (pink eye) can be caused by altering replacement schedules or by not following recommended wear and care guidelines.
Because of the convenience of internet or mail order purchase of contact lenses, many consumers are not as well educated around the potential risk of varying lens-wearing schedules and lens-care regimens.
The risk of eye infections is shown to be nearly five times higher than when the lenses are obtained from an optometrist and about 40% of contact lens wearers have some sort of contact lens related complication. Not only does the optometrist understand the risks of contact lens wear and share that information with the patient, but is able to detect complications early to ensure professional treatment.
Q: What are the risks of computerized sight tests?
A study conducted by the University of Waterloo determined that 50% of the glasses or contact lenses issued from computerized sight tests are inaccurate. This is because they do not take into consideration all of the key elements that would be considered when the prescription is developed by an optometrist.
Glossary of Terms
It can be confusing when you are confronted with so many new terms. For a full glossary of different eye and vision conditions please click here.