Healthy Vision Month – May 2021

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May

Healthy Vision Month is celebrated every year in May to stress the importance of the health of our eyes. This month was established by the National Eye Institute in 2003 and aims to spread awareness and educate people about the risks of ignoring the health of their eyes. It encourages them to go for regular eye checkups and not wait for eye problems to arise before they do.

History of Healthy Vision Month

The first known record for the treatment of eye diseases dates back to the Ebers Papyrus from Egypt in 1550 B.C. Another early medical text that had extensive info about eye treatment was the “Sushruta Samhita,” an Indian text that is considered one of the pillars of Ayurveda, dating back to the 6th century B.C. The ancient Greeks also made key advances in the understanding of the human eye. The Middle Ages saw the use of microscopes and lenses to examine the eye and its structure.

Georg Joseph Beer, a surgeon, was responsible for pioneering the Beer’s operation as a treatment for cataracts. In 1931, Vladimir Petrovich Filatov became the first person to perform a successful cornea transplant. Charles Schepens founded the Retina Foundation in 1950 (now known as Schepens Eye Research Institute). Ioannis Pallikaris, a Greek surgeon performed the first LASIK surgery in 1989.

All this proves how steady research was in the field of the treatment of the human eye. And more remains to be discovered. According to a survey conducted by the National Eye Institute, more than 23 million Americans aged 18 and above have never undergone an eye exam. And the reason is that most think that they don’t have an eye problem. This attitude can have consequences in the future. Surveys further suggest that by 2030, approximately 4.2 million people will have glaucoma, 11.5 million people will have diabetic retinopathy and 2.8 million will have age-related macular degeneration.

Healthy Vision Month timeline

1805
First Ophthalmic Hospital

The first dedicated ophthalmic hospital opens in London.

1845
Contact Lenses

Sir John Herschel suggests the idea of contact lenses.

1851
Ophthalmoscope

Hermann von Helmholtz invents the ophthalmoscope.

1948
More than a Million

Sir Stewart Duke-Elder establishes the Institute of Ophthalmology at Moorfields Eye Hospital, London.

Healthy Vision Month FAQs

How do you keep your vision healthy?

Methods to continue having healthy vision include having a balanced diet, doing regular exercise, wearing sunglasses when needed, and not smoking. Family history also plays a role here.

Which fruit is best for the eyes?

Some fruits that are great for the health of the eyes are red berries, kiwis, guavas, grapefruits, and oranges.

What is an eye stroke?

Eye stroke refers to the condition that occurs when there is a lack of blood flow to the tissue located in front of the optic nerves.

How to Observe Healthy Vision Month

  1. Share on social media

    Share resources and articles on your social media platforms. Many doctors and organizations provide important info on healthy vision. Use the hashtag #HealthyVision or #HealthyVisionMonth.

  2. Reach out via your organization

    If you work at an organization and it has a website, blog, or newsletter, use this to spread the message. Doing this increases your reach.

  3. Host an event

    Promote healthy vision in your neighborhood. Host an event to meet with people and educate them about healthy vision and its importance, treatments, and more.

5 Facts About Vision That You Didn’t Know

  1. No way to transplant eyeballs, yet

    Doctors have not yet discovered a way to transplant an eyeball as the optic nerve that connects the eye to the brain is too sensitive to reconstruct.

  2. No tears for babies

    Newborn babies have no tears when they cry and tears only begin to appear after four to 13 weeks.

  3. Millions of blind people

    Approximately 39 million people in the world are blind and six times that amount are impaired visually.

  4. Eyes with different colors

    Some people are born with each of their eyes a different color, a condition known as heterochromia.

  5. Blindspot

    Our eyes have a blind spot in the back of the retina that is not visible to us as both eyes work together to fill it in.

Why Healthy Vision Month Is Significant

  1. It stresses the importance of vision

    Without our vision, life would be extremely difficult. All that we see is what makes up our world. Healthy Vision Month stresses the importance of caring for our eyesight.

  2. It promotes proper treatment of vision

    Many people ignore minor issues in their eyesight. This can lead to major issues in the future. Healthy Vision Month is to encourage them to get their eyes checked out.

  3. Prioritize the eyes

    Healthy Vision Month is a celebration of the gift of eyesight. Thus, it educates people to prioritize their eyes and not ignore any possible signs of impairment.

Healthy Vision Month dates

YearDateDay
2021May 1Saturday
2022May 1Sunday
2023May 1Monday
2024May 1Wednesday
2025May 1Thursday