Prof. Ebele Uzodike, Registrar/CEO, Optometrists and Dispensing Opticians Registration Board of Nigeria (ODORBN) says priority attention must be given to proper eye care, to minimise the number of the blind and severely visually impaired individuals in the country.
Uzodike stated this while speaking with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Thursday, in Abuja, in commemoration of the 2021 World Sight Day, marked annually on the second Thursday of October, to focus global attention on vision impairment and blindness.
The theme for this year’s edition is: “Love your eyes”.
“Every human being has been provided with vision to see, observe and analyse and without the gift of sight, the colourful world around us would remain pale and vague,” she said.
According to her, the theme for this year’s world sight day is a reminder for us to prioritise more care and attention to our eyes.
She stressed that visual impairment and blindness were major health problems that had received relatively little attention in the world’s efforts to promote health.
“The majority of blind people in the world live in developing countries where infections, malnutrition and lack of proper eye care are major challenges.
“This is in contrast to industrialised countries, where blindness is due mainly to degenerative and metabolic disorders related to ageing.
“World Sight Day is an important day in advocating policies towards the better health of our eyes as well as for promoting better principles and healthcare policies exclusively for eye health,” she said.
Uzodike said that when people realised the need to enhance their hygiene and their eye health, many eye conditions could be kept at bay.
“Age-related eye complications are common and, therefore, preventive measures such as a good diet, healthy lifestyle and regular eye checks are very essential.
“Some of the common issues with the older generation include, hypertension and diabetes-induced conditions like hypertensive retinopathy and diabetic retinopathy, age related macular degenerations etc,” she said.
Uzodike said every age had explicitly its own set of eye problems and issues, which could worsen overtime and lead to permanent vision loss if not addressed promptly.
She said some of these cases included cataract, glaucoma, uncorrected refractive errors and age related macular degeneration, among others. (NAN)