Keep your eyes on the prize

But what if it's blurry? PR and Media Manager, Anne Grenyer, asks how many lives could benefit from a simple sight test?

Swimming pool
Swimming is good for you and relaxing. But, sadly, a recent experience after a busy day at the AOP didn’t live up to expectations. What I can only describe as lane rage kicked off provoked by a man attempting an overly demonstrative butterfly stroke in a busy pool. Added to that, a few enthusiastic swimmers were hurtling the wrong way round the ‘one way system’ oblivious to the direction sign they were splashing past. It was mayhem.

Aside from the thought that swimming may not be for me – I wondered if the poolside offenders perhaps couldn’t see the sign, hence why they were merrily swimming along unaware. After all, it wouldn’t be the first time impaired vision impacted a person’s daily life.

Just the other week, renowned New Zealand batsman, Ross Taylor, commented that he couldn’t see the ball in matches and a consequent eye test discovered that he had a pterygium on his left eye - a small benign growth, often called ‘surfer’s eye’. Imagine how different his matches may have been had he visited an optometrist a little earlier?

You hear the phrase ‘eyes on the prize’ bandied around – but what if the prize is a bit blurry?

Considering that sight is the sense people fear losing the most, the need for eye checks – and the importance of sight in general – is often overlooked. How many people are living their daily lives in a bit of a blur, but haven’t done anything about it? My mind boggles at the potential impact on our lives, and to wider society, if we could all see to the best of our ability. 

Our new animated video reminds us about the importance of sight tests and how optometrists are the first port of call for any eye problems. Just imagine the difference it could make if we all went to see our local optometrist, in the same way as our dentist, ie on a regular basis, not just when we have concerns. Who knows, it could even tempt me back into the pool. So long as Mr Butterfly isn’t there.

See our new ‘For patients’ section for more eye health top tips.

Anne GrenyerAnne Grenyer is the AOP’s PR and Media Manager and is always on the lookout for patient stories. If you’ve got an eye-related tale to tell, she’s your woman.