National Eye Health Week will take place between Monday 24th – Sunday 30th September and the eye team at Whipps Cross are hoping to raise awareness of why vision matters by hosting a number of exciting events throughout the week.
Sight is one of our most important senses and the one people fear losing most but how much do we really understand about keeping our eyes healthy? We perceive 80% of all impressions by means of our sight. If other senses such as taste and smell stop working; it’s our eyes that protect us best from danger.
Eye problems can occur at any age throughout life but you’re never too young or old to have an eye test. The earlier a vision problem is detected the more effectively it can be treated.
What are the signs and symptoms of possible vision problems?
- Severe, sudden eye pain and recurrent pain in or around the eye.
- Hazy, blurred or double vision. Seeing flashes of light or sudden bright floating spots.
- Seeing rainbows or halos around lights. Seeing floating "spider webs". Seeing a "curtain coming down" over one eye.
Some eye conditions may not always have obvious outwards signs or symptoms, such as glaucoma, and therefore it’s important to have regular eye tests with your local Optometrist. There are certain health conditions that have a higher risk of associated eye problems for example, stroke, diabetes, high blood pressure, neurological conditions and individuals with special needs and learning disabilities.
Every contact matters and each patient appointment is an important opportunity for us to ask whether there are any eye symptoms and when a patient’s last eye test was.
For healthy vision we need to eat well, exercise, wear eye protection in bright sunlight and avoid smoking and drinking alcohol.
The events for National Eye Health Week are to help raise awareness for staff, patients and relatives in the importance of having regular eye checks and referring patients for eye assessments. Ophthalmology is a multi-disciplinary team of ophthalmologists, optometrists, orthoptists, eye clinic liaison officers and nursing staff. Our administration teams provide a vital role in the effective provision of patient care.
Please come along and join us for the events during the week:
- Tuesday 25 September - A stall in the main hospital restaurant at lunch-time (12 – 2pm) with a focus on eye health in children. Come and meet the staff and learn more about eye health.
- Thursday 27 September - A stall in the main hospital restaurant at lunch-time (12 – 2pm) with a focus on eye health in adults. As well as a chance to meet the teams, there will be a cake sale to raise money to improve patient experience in our Eye Treatment Centre.
- Thursday 27 September (evening) – We’ll be holding an educational evening for local optometrists and GPs focusing on paediatric and adult neuro-ophthalmology, the Minor Eye Conditions service and referral pathways.
- Friday 28 September – We’ll be hosting a Lunch & Learn in the Eye Treatment Centre (Eye Theatre Reception Area) 1.30 – 2.30pm on how ward teams can work more closely with the Eye Team to improve patient care, highlighting what we can do to improve eye care in patients across all ages and conditions including childhood conditions, diabetes, stroke and care of the elderly. There will also be an opportunity to hear about the emotional & social support we provide.
We look forward to meeting you.
Laura Grant, Head Orthoptist, Whipps Cross Hospital