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June 10, 2021

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General eye-care knowledge crucial to guard eye health

As the 26th National “Eye Care Day” fell on Sunday, Shanghai Daily launched the second event of the “Healthy Life Tour” series campaign.

To popularize eye-care education and promote a healthy lifestyle, international ophthalmology specialist Santen Pharmaceutical is joining hands with Shanghai Daily, neighborhood members and the general public to take part in the event.

Guided by the Shanghai Municipal Health Promotion Committee Office, organized by Shanghai Daily and the Shanghai Municipal Center for Health Promotion and with support from the Hunan Road Subdistrict in Xuhui District, the eye health promotional activity was held on Sunday with the theme “Take Care of Your Eyes From Childhood.”

This year’s National Eye Care Day is themed “Focusing on General Eye Health.”

An extensive survey was conducted on Shanghai Daily’s website regarding eye habits and eye health problems of children and adolescents between the ages of 7 and 17 earlier this year.

Among nearly 1,000 respondents, 30 percent have myopia and 10.2 percent feel visual fatigue, while 9.4 percent experience eye allergies.

The event also collected dozens of questions from an online questionnaire and livestreaming session.

Industry experts and health practitioners beckoned society’s attention and efforts to drive awareness of good eye habits.

They stressed the importance of grassroots-level eye-care knowledge and participation of not only patients but also friends, relatives and community members.

Managing Director of Santen China Business Takayuki Yamada said Santen is dedicated to realizing its world vision of “Happiness with Vision,” and has engaged in a number of eye-care awareness activities for different age groups.

He said the company plans to use community-level eye-care awareness programs in Shanghai as a model for rolling out similar projects in other parts of the country in the future.

It’s also running initiatives such as a glaucoma screening project in Xuhui District. Glaucoma is the second biggest cause of blindness.

These kind of initiatives not only help to identify potential patients, but also provide relevant knowledge for family members and relatives to familiarize themselves with the disease and help them live with those afflicted by eye problems.

“We are also considering initiatives related to disease education to connect with those interested in disease topics and try to reach as many people as possible,” Yamada said.

Santen also plans to target community-level organizations with self-medication knowledge more suitable for the Chinese market to promote eye health.

“We’re also dedicated to spreading self-medication know-how among all age groups in the general public,” he said.

Smart devices and electronics are already part of everyday life, and there’s a need to better understand the proper means to protect eyes and prevent the progression of eye diseases, Yamada added.

Gong Lan, chief physician of the ocular surface disease department at the Eye, Ear, Nose and Throat Hospital of Fudan University, shared information about disease prevention and everyday eye-care tips.

“To guard the eye health of children and adolescents, it’s fundamental for parents to actively learn about eye health, properly guide their children to develop an awareness of eye care and good eye habits and achieve early prevention and timely treatment,” Gong said.

She provided useful measures to prevent eye dryness and overuse of electronic devices. People should take a break after 20 minutes of screen time, and use humidifiers in air-conditioned rooms to avoid eye dryness.

She also offered valuable tips including how to avoid acute allergies, protect children’s eyesight and eye health guidelines for those interested in plastic surgery.

The National Health Commission officially set up the National Children’s Eye Sight Management Expertise Consultative Committee in March to enhance the prevention of teenage myopia and improve the general eye health of children.


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