ALLERGY, RESPIRATORY
Asthmatics Who Quit Smoking May Reverse Lung Damage
'Safe' Ozone Levels May Not Be for Some
Air Quality Better in Northeast, Midwest
ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE
Placebo Acupuncture Tied to Higher IVF Pregnancies
No Verdict Yet on Grape Seed Extract vs. Breast Cancer
U.S. Spends Billions On Alternative Medicine
ANIMAL CARE
Safe Toys for Dogs
Rest Easy. When It Comes to Swine Flu, Your Pet Is Safe
'Comfort Dogs' Come to Emotional Rescue
BONES & JOINTS
Genes May Help Drive Rotator Cuff Injury
Majority of College Students Report Backpack-Related Pain
Active Young Women Need Calcium, Vitamin D
CANCER
Green Tea Compound Slowed Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia
No Verdict Yet on Grape Seed Extract vs. Breast Cancer
Green Tea May Help Prevent Oral Cancer
CAREGIVING
New Guidelines for Treating Heart Failure
With Age Comes Greater Risk of Hypothermia
Mom's Smoking May Lead to SIDS
CIRCULATORY SYSTEM
Support Network May Play Role in Benefits of Drinking
Exercise May Blunt Salt's Effect on Hypertension
Grapefruit-Heavy Diet Helped Spur Dangerous Clot
COSMETIC
Study Evaluates Laser Therapies for Hair Removal
Mouse Study Finds Molecule That Tells Hair to Grow
What to Do If You Have Unsightly Veins
DENTAL, ORAL
Periodontal Disease Impacts Whole Health
Toothbrushing May Stave Off Heart Woes
Sports Drinks May Be Tough on Teeth
DIABETES
Fish Twice a Week Cuts Diabetics' Kidney Risks
Diabetes Linked to Cognitive Problems
Saliva Test Could Monitor Type 2 Diabetes
DIET, NUTRITION
Research Confirms How Valuable A Healthy Lifestyle Can Be
An Apple a Day May Help Keep Heart Disease Away
Mercury in Fish Linked to High Blood Pressure
DISABILITIES
Could Your Cell Phone Help Shield You From Alzheimer's?
Review Finds Marijuana May Help MS Patients
ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH
Years of Exposure to Traffic Pollution Raises Blood Pressure
Air Pollution May Cause Appendicitis: Study Reveals
Green Areas Lower Health Inequities Between Rich, Poor
EYE CARE, VISION
Sports Eye Injuries Leading Cause of Blindness in Youths
Eye Test Could Spot Diabetes Vision Trouble Early
Action-Filled Video Games Boost Adult Vision
FITNESS
Fall Cleanup Is a Prime Time for Accidents
The Juice From Beetroots May Boost Stamina
Study Shows Exercise Shields Against Osteoporosis
GASTROINTESTINAL PROBLEMS
Peppermint Oil, Fiber Can Fight Irritable Bowel
Olive Oil May Protect Against Bowel Disease
New Guidelines Issued for Management of IBS
GENERAL HEALTH
Spread of Swine Flu in Japan Could Raise WHO Alert to Highest Level
'Cell Phone Elbow' -- A New Ill for the Wired Age
Swine Flu Loves a Crowd
HEAD & NECK
Ski Helmets Encouraged for All
Zen May Thicken Brain, Thwart Pain
Many Children Will Outgrow Headaches
HEALTH & TECHNOLOGY
Magnet Therapy May Ease Hard-to-Treat Depression
Study Suggests Link Between Cell Phones and Brain Tumors
The Internet Is Becoming One-Stop Shopping for Health Help
HEARING
Noise Hurts Men's Hearing More, Study Shows
Summer Sounds Can Lead to Hearing Loss
HEART & CARDIOVASCULAR
Omega-6 Fatty Acids Can Be Good for You
Quitting Smoking Doubles Survival in Early Stage Lung Cancer
Too Much Red Meat May Shorten Life Span
INFECTIOUS DISEASE
The HPV Vaccine: Preventative Medicine or Human Sacrifice?
Swine Flu Closes Three Schools in NYC
Swine Flu Is Now a Pandemic Says W.H.O.
INFERTILITY
Obesity May Affect Fertility in Young Womene
KID'S HEALTH
Eating Fish, Breast-Feeding Boost Infant Development
Winter's Bitter Cold Poses Health Dangers
Wood Fires Can Harm the Youngest Lungs
MEN'S HEALTH
The Dark Side of Vegetarianism
Countdown to Hair Loss
Eating Fast Until Full Triples Overweight Risk
MENTAL HEALTH
Love Hormone May Ease Discussion of Painful Topics
Consciousness Helps the Mind and Body Work Together
Estrogen May Help Men's Hearts
PAIN
Tai Chi May Help Ease Fibromyalgia
Are We Exercising Pain Away? Not So Much.
Acupuncture, Real or Fake, Eases Back Pain
PHYSICAL THERAPY
PREGNANCY
Music of Mozart Soothes the Preemie Baby
Heart Defects in Newborns Linked to Antidepressants
Acupuncture May Relieve Acid Indigestation In Pregnancy
SENIORS
High-Impact Activity May Be Good for Old Bones
Tai Chi May Help Ward Off Knee Pain in Seniors
The Healthy Habits of Centenarians
SEXUAL HEALTH
SLEEP DISORDERS
Exercising Throat Muscles May Relieve Sleep Apnea
Better Sleep, Grades Seem to Go Up
6 to 8 Hours of Shut-Eye Is Optimal for Health
WOMEN'S HEALTH
Whole Grains, Bran May Fight Hypertension in Men
Simple Carbs Pose Heart Risk for Women
Vitamin D Deficiency Puts 40% of U.S. Infants and Toddlers At Risk
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Americans Losing Sight of Eye Health

FRIDAY, Oct. 17 (HealthDay News) -- Even though 81 percent of Americans use some form of vision correction, 26 percent have not visited an eye doctor or eye care specialist within the past two years, according to an American Optometric Association-commissioned survey.

The poll suggests many people aren't paying enough attention to their eye health.

"Every adult should have a comprehensive eye exam at least every two years, but it's even more important for people who already use corrective lenses," Dr. James Kirchner, the AOA's eye health expert, said in an association news release.

"Too often, we see people who have put off eye exams, because they assume they just need a different lens prescription, when they really have a more serious problem. With eye diseases and disorders, as with most health issues, early detection and treatment are often the keys to avoiding permanent problems," Kirchner said.

Annual eye exams for everyone over age 60 are recommended by the AOA.

The survey of 1,001 Americans age 18 and older also found:

* Most Americans (72 percent) age 55 and older began experiencing vision changes between the ages of 40 to 45.
* As they age, respondents said they worried more about losing their vision (38 percent) than their memory (31 percent), their ability to walk (14 percent) or their hair (8 percent).
* Even though concerns about vision problems are common, 15 percent of people who don't wear any form of vision correction have never been to an eye doctor.
* Sixty-two percent of respondents didn't know that signs of diabetes may be detected by an eye doctor, while 71 percent didn't know that a comprehensive eye exam can detect hypertension, brain tumors (75 percent), cancer (78 percent), cardiovascular disease (80 percent), and multiple sclerosis (90 percent).
* Top concerns about vision problems include not being able to live independently (48 percent), losing the ability to drive (23 percent), and being unable to read (21 percent).
* Many older people are taking action to address their age-related vision problems. Sixty percent of respondents age 55 and older said they schedule frequent eye exams, 28 percent said they limit their night driving, 29 percent are eating more nutrients necessary for eye health, and 9 percent purchase books and other materials in large print.
* There were many misconceptions about behaviors that can damage eyes. For example, many incorrectly believe that eye damage can be caused by reading under dim light (71 percent), sitting too close to the television (66 percent), or by rubbing the eyes. These behaviors can cause eye strain but don't cause actual damage to the eye or eyesight.

More information

Prevent Blindness America has more about eye health.



-- Robert Preidt



SOURCE: American Optometric Association, news release, Oct. 13, 2008

Last Updated: Oct. 17, 2008

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