Insight on BCTV: Dine in the Dark 2019

Mark Levengood discusses Dine in the Dark 2019 with Lori Schermerhorn from VRC and Dave Meas from Berks Fire + Water Restoration. Watch August 2019’s BCTV’s Insight here…

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August is Children’s Eye Health and Safety Month

August is Children’s Eye Health and Safety Month

Story Credit: Consumer Health Digest

August is dedicated to preventing eye injuries and vision loss and saving children’s eyesight. One of 20 children ages 3 to 5 has a vision problem that could result in permanent vision if left untreated. Despite this unsettling statistics, 80 percent of preschoolers do not receive an eye screening. Children’s Eye Health and Safety Awareness Month encourages parents to learn how to protect their child’s eyesight and save their child’s eyesight from vision threatening conditions through regular eye exams, hence early detection and proper treatment. According to Craig Hensle, MD, President of the Virginia Society of Ophthalmology, eye exams for children are important because vision changes can occur without you or your child noticing.

 

Purpose of Children’s Eye Health and Safety Awareness Month

Parents should make their child’s vision health a priority, which is why the main objectives of Children’s Eye Health and Safety Awareness Month are to:

  • Spread Information On The Importance Of Healthy Vision – Many activities gear towards family-friendly resources that help parents take care of their child’s eye sight and keep it healthy.
  • Know More About Early Detection Of Vision Problems In Children – Impart the red flags that a child may have a vision problem, such as uneven focus, amblyopia (lazy eye) and strabismus (crossed eyes). Early detection of vision conditions is crucial. Lazy eye is often corrected if treatment started at an early age; however, successful treatment is rarely achieved if treatment has started after a child reaches 8 or 9 years old.
  • Raise Awareness About Preventing Eye Injuries In Children – In addition to eye diseases and conditions, you can also protect your children from sports-related eye injuries. About 100,000 sports-related eye injuries happen every day, where in one-third of these injuries occur in children under age 16. 90% could have been avoided if the child had worn protective eyewear, such as polycarbonate lenses fitted by an eye care professional. These lenses can withstand a ball traveling 90mph as it is 20 times stronger than ordinary eyeglasses.
  • Save Children’s Eyesight – Teach parents to help their child correct their vision and recover from vision loss.

 

What You can do on Children’s Eye Health and Safety Awareness Month?

Having a month dedicated to knowing about your child’s eye health and safety can make a big difference to your child’s health and life. Based on the key objectives of this awareness month, you can do so much more to help raise awareness about vision diseases and eye conditions in children, as well as how to prevent them. To do a quick involvement, you can do your own research online and use the social media to share good and factual information to others. You can also support eye health and safety education program and sight-saving programs, which are designed specifically for children.

 

Message on Children’s Eye Health and Safety Awareness Month

Children Eye Health

Children should have an eye exam at 6 months and this must be repeated at age 3. Once they start school, eye exams must be done regularly. About 80% of what children learn in school is taught visually, which means if a child has undetected and uncorrected vision problem, it will affect the child’s development and performances in school. Some warning signs that your child may be experiences vision problems are:

  • Tilting the head or squinting to see the class board better or when watching TV
  • Frequent eye rubbing when he’s trying to concentrate on something.
  • Holding a book too close to his eyes or often sitting close to the TV.
  • Consistently using his fingers to guide his eyes when reading.
  • Closing one eye to read or watch TV.
  • Excessive tearing without any tear-causing stimuli.
  • Eye discomfort when using a computer or any digital device i.e digital eye strain.
  • Sensitivity to light, which sometimes accompanied by headache or nausea.
  • Wandering eyes.

 

Special Tips on Children’s Eye Health and Safety Awareness Month

Aside from keeping a watchful eye for some of the warning signs listed above, protect your child from eye injuries by ensuring your children’s toys are age-appropriate and not a danger to their eyes. Check if your child’s toys or stuff are free of sharp or protruding parts that could accidentally poke the eyes. Fireworks are also detrimental to your child’s safety, as it can cause blindness if not handled correctly.

 

Conclusion

It’s your responsibility as a parent to know how you can keep your child’s vision healthy and obtain early diagnosis in case your child is suffering from vision problems through a regular eye exam. Also, be aware that eye injuries can happen anytime, anywhere. Eye injuries are often caused by sports or physical activities, so know proper precautions such as wearing protective eyewear when playing sports.

 


About Consumer Health Digest: Consumer Health Digest presents health related content to individuals looking to improve their overall health and well-being. All of the content appearing on Consumer Health Digest’s website is produced, selected, and reviewed by health writers and editors. Consumer Health Digest focuses on providing valuable health information and savings on health-related products for better managing your health.

 

National Sunglasses Day

For #NationalSunglassesDay, #VRCberks CEO Lori Schermerhorn gave Olivet Boys & Girls Club some summer safety measures to follow for #UVsafety as part of a series created by Legacy Logistics to spread awareness of long-term vision health. Kids were sporting their brand new UV-resistant ICU Eyewear they received in their goody bags on the way outside for Sweet Ride Ice Cream, LLC and to strike a pose for WFMZ TV cameras #VisionCouncil #UVSafetyAwarenessMonth #LegacyLogistics

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Insight on BCTV: Appropriate vs. Inappropriate Interactions

Mark Levengood discusses Appropriate vs. Inappropriate Interactions with the Visually Impaired with Scott Maulick, a long-time client at VRC. Watch July 2019’s BCTV’s Insight here…

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Fireworks Eye Safety Advice from AAO

Fireworks Eye Safety

Story Credit: American Academy of Ophthalmology

The numbers are clear: fireworks are dangerous, and the month around July 4th is the most dangerous time. According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission’s most recent annual fireworks injury report (PDF) fireworks caused eight deaths and nearly 13,000 injuries in 2017. Two-thirds of the fireworks injuries treated in emergency rooms happened between mid-June and mid-July.


The most recent Consumer Product Safety Commission report found that 14% of fireworks injuries were eye injuries. In the most severe cases, fireworks can rupture the globe of the eye, cause chemical and thermal burns, corneal abrasions and retinal detachment — all of which can cause permanent eye damage and vision loss.

Children and young adults are frequent victims. Children age 15 and under accounted for 36% of the total injuries, according to the commission’s report. And half of the injuries requiring an emergency room visit were to people age 20 or younger.

Even sparklers can be dangerous, as they burn at more than 2,000 degrees Farenheit. Sparklers were responsible for 1,200 of the injuries in the latest report, and a sparkler mishap caused one of the fireworks deaths reported in 2017.

The people injured by fireworks aren’t necessarily handling the explosives themselves. In fact, 65% of people injured by fireworks were bystanders, according to another study. The statistics don’t lie. Children and people not handling fireworks themselves are in as much danger as the people actually lighting fireworks.

What to Do for a Fireworks Eye Injury

Fireworks-related eye injuries can combine blunt force trauma, heat burns and chemical exposure. If an eye injury from fireworks occurs, it should be considered a medical emergency.

  • Seek medical attention immediately.
  • Do not rub your eyes.
  • Do not rinse your eyes.
  • Do not apply pressure.
  • Do not remove any objects that are stuck in the eye.
  • Do not apply ointments or take any blood-thinning pain medications such as aspirin or ibuprofen unless directed by a doctor.

 

Fireworks: The Blinding Truth

Fireworks safety tips

The best way to avoid a potentially blinding fireworks injury is by attending a professional, public fireworks show rather than purchasing fireworks for home use.

If you attend or live near a professional fireworks show:

  • Respect safety barriers, follow all safety instructions and view fireworks from at least 500 feet away.
  • Do not touch unexploded fireworks; instead, immediately contact local fire or police departments to help.

For those who decide to purchase and use consumer fireworks in states where they are legal (PDF), follow these safety tips from the Consumer Product Safety Commission:

  • Do not allow young children to play with fireworks. Sparklers, a firework often considered by many to be the ideal “safe” device for the young, burn at very high temperatures and should be not be handled by young children. Children may not understand the danger involved with fireworks and may not act appropriately while using the devices or in case of emergency.
  • Older children should be permitted to use fireworks only under close adult supervision.
  • Do not allow any running or horseplay.
  • Set off fireworks outdoors in a clear area, away from houses, dry leaves, or grass and other flammable materials.
  • Keep a bucket of water nearby for emergencies and for pouring on fireworks that fail to ignite or explode.
  • Do not try to relight or handle malfunctioning or “dud” fireworks. Soak them with water and throw them away.
  • Be sure other people are out of range before lighting fireworks.
  • Never light fireworks in a container, especially a glass or metal container.
  • Keep unused fireworks away from firing areas.
  • Store fireworks in a cool, dry place.
  • Check instructions for special storage directions.
  • Observe local laws.
  • Never have any portion of your body directly over a firework while lighting.
  • Do not experiment with homemade fireworks.

 


About the American Academy of Ophthalmology: The mission of the American Academy of Ophthalmology is to protect sight and empower lives by serving as an advocate for patients and the public, leading ophthalmic education, and advancing the profession of ophthalmology. The American Academy of Ophthalmology is the world’s largest association of eye physicians and surgeons. A global community of 32,000 medical doctors, we protect sight and empower lives by setting the standards for ophthalmic education and advocating for our patients and the public. We innovate to advance our profession and to ensure the delivery of the highest-quality eye care.

 

Insight on BCTV: National Federation for the Blind

Mark Levengood talks about The National Federation of the Blind with Rosemary Freedman. Watch June 2019’s BCTV’s Insight here…

View on BCTV.org

 

 

Dine in the Dark – September 26, 2019


Tickets On Sale Now!

Buy Tickets

Thursday, September 26, 2019

Crowne Plaza, Reading
1741 Papermill Road
Reading, PA 19610

Buy Tickets

 


Join us for Dine in the Dark, an evening of powerful messages from clients, caregivers, and community leaders personally touched by visual impairment. Special thanks to all our sponsors and underwriters, including 2019’s Title Sponsor,

 

Whether from personal experience, a family member, friend, or acquaintance, practically everyone is touched by the reality of blindness or low vision. Realizing the ongoing need for blind and low vision awareness within our community, Vision Resource Center of Berks County along with the Kutztown University Teachers of the Visually Impaired will host Dine in the Dark on Thursday, September 26th, 2019 at the Crowne Plaza Reading. The positive community support of this evening’s event allows Vision Resource Center of Berks County and the Kutztown University Visual Impairment Program the continued opportunity to help blind and visually impaired children and adults in our community.

If you would like more information about Dine in the Dark, including sponsorship opportunities, please contact Carolyn Krick: 610-375-8407 ext. 110 (ckrick@vrcberks.org) or Bill Sutton: 610-375-8407 ext. 117 (bsutton@vrcberks.org). The Sponsorship Opportunities form can also be downloaded HERE.

Your continued support allows Vision Resource Center of Berks County and the Kutztown University Visual Impairment Program the ongoing opportunity to help blind and visually impaired children and adults in our community.

 

For Sponsorship Opportunities, please click HERE.

 

If you can’t make the event but would still like to donate, please click on a link below:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Insight on BCTV: Leisure Activities for the Visually Impaired

Lori Schermerhorn gets an insiders perspective on how to adapt common leisure activities to enjoy them despite visual impairments from Mark Levengood and Tom Devlin. Watch May 2019’s BCTV’s Insight here…

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Dine in the Dark Sponsorship Opportunities


Vision Resource Center of Berks County

and the Kutztown University Teachers of the Visually Impaired

proudly present

Thursday, September 26, 2019

Crowne Plaza, Reading
1741 Papermill Road
Reading, PA 19610


Help Vision Resource Center of Berks County and the Kutztown University Teachers of the Visually Impaired make a difference in our community by partnering with us for Dine in the Dark 2019.


Please click HERE for the 2019 Sponsorship Opportunities form.


Imagine waking up one morning and your world was dark, fuzzy, or cloudy. What if you could no longer drive to work, the grocery store, or to your child’s after school functions because of vision loss. How would you cope? How would your family cope? The Vision Resource Center of Berks County has created the Dine in the Dark event for people with vision to experience a meal in darkness.

Dine in the Dark will take place on Thursday, September 26, 2019 at the Crowne Plaza Reading, 1741 Papermill Road, Reading, Pennsylvania 19610. Educational activities and demonstrations will begin at 5PM and dinner will be served while you are blindfolded at 6PM.

Vision Resource Center of Berks County, in partnership with Kutztown University Teachers of the Visually Impaired, will present this enlightening opportunity for you to experience an evening without sight and then listen to powerful messages from clients, caregivers, and community members about their stories and experiences.

We are proud to announce that Ted and Lisa Lavender of Berks Fire Water Restorations are once again the co-chairs of this event. Please download and review the Sponsorship Opportunities Form HERE and consider becoming a sponsor for this event to show your support for those within our local community living with vision loss. Individual Dine in the Dark tickets and program ads are also available. Your support will allow Vision Resource Center of Berks County and Kutztown University Teachers of the Visually Impaired to continue their work with blind and visually impaired children and adults.

Thank you in advance for your support of this worthy cause. For additional information about Dine in the Dark sponsorship opportunities, please contact Carolyn Krick at 610-375-8407 ext. 110 (ckrick@vrcberks.org) or Bill Sutton at 610-375-8407 ext. 117 (bsutton@vrcberks.org). If you wish to sponsor via credit card, please click any of the options below for secure PayPal options.

If payment is made by credit card, please download the Dine in the Dark Sponsorship Opportunities Form HERE, fill it out, and return it to us via fax (610-375-6467), email, or mail (2020 Hampden Blvd., Reading, PA 19604).


Platinum/Title Sponsor* only one available – $5,000
to pay by credit card, CLICK HERE

Gold Sponsor* – $2,500
to pay by credit card, CLICK HERE

Silver Sponsor* – $1,500
to pay by credit card, CLICK HERE

Bronze Sponsor* – $500
to pay by credit card, CLICK HERE

Full Page Program Ad* – $400
to pay by credit card, CLICK HERE

Half Page Program Ad* – $250
to pay by credit card, CLICK HERE

Patron Sponsor* – $250
to pay by credit card, CLICK HERE

 

*Your contribution is tax deductible to the extent allowed by law.

May is Healthy Vision and Ultraviolet Awareness Month

May is Healthy Vision and Ultraviolet Awareness Month

News Release from American Academy of Ophthalmology

Taking Simple Steps Can Help Protect Your Sight

Approximately 37 million adults in America have age-related macular degeneration, cataract, diabetic retinopathy, or glaucoma, all of which can cause visual impairment or blindness, according to the National Eye Institute (NEI).[i] However, recent studies show that making healthy choices and getting regular eye exams can help reduce a person’s risk of vision loss. In support of NEI’s Healthy Vision Month in May, Vision Resource Center of America and the American Academy of Ophthalmology are encouraging everyone to take charge of their eye health and preserve their sight by following some simple tips.

 

Live a healthy lifestyle.

Eating a nutritious diet, maintaining a healthy weight and not smoking can lower your risk of eye disease. Foods that boost eye health include dark green leafy greens, cold water fish and citrus fruits. A study recently published in the journal Ophthalmology showed that a diet rich in vitamin C can cut the risk of cataract progression by nearly a third.[ii] Other research shows that smoking doubles the risk of the eye disease age-related macular degeneration, is linked to cataracts, and worsens dry eye.

 

Know your family history.

Certain eye diseases can be inherited. If you have a close relative with macular degeneration, you have a 50 percent chance of developing the condition. In addition, a family history of glaucoma increases your chances of developing the condition by four to nine times. So talk to your family members about what eye conditions they have. It can help you and your eye care professionals evaluate whether you may be at higher risk.

 

Get a dilated eye exam.

Many eye diseases may have no symptoms in their early stages. A dilated eye exam is the best way to detect eye diseases so they can be treated as soon as possible to help prevent vision loss. The Academy recommends that adults have a baseline comprehensive eye exam with an ophthalmologist – a physician specializing in medical and surgical eye care – by the time they turn 40. This is when age-related eye changes often begin to occur. People who are 65 and older should get an eye exam every one to two years. Those with chronic conditions such as diabetes or high blood pressure or known eye diseases may need to go earlier and more often.

 

Wear sunglasses.

Over time, exposure to UV rays from the sun can increase your risk of cataracts, certain cancers and growths in or around the eyes. When choosing sunglasses, pick ones that block out at least 99 percent of UV rays. A wide-brimmed hat offers great additional protection as well.

 

Use protective eyewear to prevent injuries.

Roughly a third of all emergency room visits for eye-related issues stem from traumatic eye injuries, according to a recent study in the journal Ophthalmology.[iii] To help prevent these injuries, wear the right protective eyewear when doing activities that could cause eye injuries, such as home repair, garden work and sports.

“People don’t often realize that simple, everyday actions can help them preserve their vision well through their golden years,” said Rebecca J. Taylor, M.D., clinical spokesperson for the American Academy of Ophthalmology. “We encourage everyone to take these steps in order to keep their eyes healthy.”

 

To learn more ways to keep your eyes healthy, visit the American Academy of Ophthalmology’s public information website at www.aao.org/eye-health.

 


About the American Academy of Ophthalmology: The American Academy of Ophthalmology is the world’s largest association of eye physicians and surgeons. A global community of 32,000 medical doctors, we protect sight and empower lives by setting the standards for ophthalmic education and advocating for our patients and the public. We innovate to advance our profession and to ensure the delivery of the highest-quality eye care. Our EyeSmart® program provides the public with the most trusted information about eye health. For more information, visit www.aao.org.

[i] https://nei.nih.gov/eyedata/adultvision_usa

[ii] Genetic and Dietary Factors Influencing the Progression of Nuclear Cataract, Yonova-Doing, et al, Ophthalmology, article in press March 2016.

[iii] Eye-related Emergency Department Visits in the United States, 2010, Vaziri, et al. Ophthalmology, April 2016.