Celebrity chef and Hairy Bikers star Dave Myers, 61, is backing an eye health awareness campaign aimed at Britain’s ageing population.
In time for National Eye Health Week (24-30 September) Dave’s message is for Britain’s ageing population to make their eye health a priority and have eye tests more regularly. RNIB data shows that the over-65s are almost twice as likely to develop an eye health condition¹, such as glaucoma or cataracts. However Specsavers research shows that one in four UK people are not having an eye test every two years² as recommended by the College of Optometrists.
Dave Myers is supporting the Specsavers and RNIB joint campaign after discovering that he has glaucoma: ‘I was shocked when I found out that I’d developed glaucoma. Thankfully it was spotted during a routine eye test but if it had gone unnoticed, I could have gone blind, and that would have had a huge impact on how I do the job I love so much.
‘Like so many people, my career is my passion and it’s so hard to be able to imagine doing all the things I love to do if I couldn’t see, whether it’s riding my bike, reading an autocue or preparing ingredients. The thought that I could have lost my sight is really scary.’
Specsavers co-founder Doug Perkins, 75, an optometrist of more than 50 years, adds: ‘Our message via Hairy Biker Dave is that an eye test can help detect the health conditions that can go hand-in-hand with ageing – and if left untreated, cause sight loss.’
- 25% of people are not having an eye test every two years as recommended by the College of Optometrists
- Sight is the nation’s most precious sense by far; 10 times more people (78% of people) said sight was the sense they fear losing most compared to the next most popular sense, smell (8%), followed by hearing (7%).
- Almost a quarter of people are ignoring the first signs of sight loss; despite complaining of not being able to see properly 23% of people have not visited an optician
- More than 80% of people are not aware that an optician can spot the early signs of cardiovascular disease, the leading cause of death in the UK
- Research suggests Brits check their teeth more often than their eyes; 42% visit the dentist once every six months (equating to four times over twice years) while 25% of UK adults haven’t had an eye test in the past two years or at all
- RNIB data. The older you are, the greater your chances of developing an eye condition that could threaten your sight. The rate of sight loss among people aged 65-69 is 87% higher compared to people aged 60-64 years; 200 cases per 100k population, compared to 107 cases.
- Specsavers and RNIB State of the National Eye Health report 2017 with YouGov
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