Show & Tell

Men urged to take care of their eyes

Released to coincide with Men’s Health Week – which ran from June 12–18 – the statistics revealed that men accounted for less than 43% of the 8.67 million optometric services provided in Australia last year. Of those, men between the ages of 45 and 74 utilised the least level of optometric services (around 1.84 million services), compared to those provided to women in the same age group (around 2.4 million).This is a concern according to OA’s resident optometrist Mr Luke Arundel, who said vision loss could prevent healthy and independent ageing.“When you consider 75% of vision loss is preventable or treatable, having regular eye examinations with an optometrist is critical to having good vision for life,” he said.Meanwhile, according to a report commissioned by Vision 2020 Australia in 2009, vision loss can triple the risk of developing depression and if not properly managed, can also negatively impact on social connectedness and a sense of independence – particularly if the loss of a driving licence also occurs.Arundel also said men needed to improve eye safety habits. In 2016, men accounted for 83% of the 11,078 cases registered on the Medicare database in which optometrists roved a foreign body bedded in the eye.“While more men than women may require this type of treatment due to male gender skews across certain occupations – in particular trades and labouring – and home duties such as maintenance, renovating and gardening, it does signal that Australians also need to be taking eye safety more seriously,” Arundel said.OA recommends the use of Australian standard safety glasses when working in an environment, or with equipment, that generates debris such as wood cutting, carpentry, grinding, etc.

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