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Don't Jeopardize Your Eyesight!
by VCA Spokesperson Alex Trebek
Vision Council of America

Alex Trebek glances up for a photo during a busy afternoon of signing autographs for Vision Expo visitors.
The answer is: This Vision Council of America spokesperson was recently nominated for a Daytime Emmy Award in the category "Outstanding Game Show Host."

The question, of course, is: Who is Alex Trebek?

Trebek has hosted Jeopardy! since 1984. He has won two Emmys and has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

As VCA spokesperson, Trebek taped a public service announcement about the importance of regular eye exams.

Read what he said below...

Answer: Every two and a half years.
Question: How often does the average American get his eyes examined?

You don't have to be the host of Jeopardy! to understand the importance of regular eye exams for you and your family. Since 80 percent of what we learn is visual, everyone needs the reassurance of knowing he is receiving the best vision care possible. It's especially significant in today's busy, hectic world where there are demands on vision as never before.

As spokesperson for Vision Council of America, I've learned that every age group has specific vision needs:

  • Children - Our children must have thorough eye exams before entering school. One in four children has an undiagnosed vision problem which can interfere with learning and lead to academic problems, behavioral problems, or worse. And since a large percentage of computer users are children, they are at risk for blurry and double vision, dry and tired eyes, neck and shoulder pain, and general fatigue. Children also need the proper sunwear to avert serious vision problems later in life due to unprotected exposure to the sun.

  • Baby Boomers - People born between 1946 and 1964 are classified as "baby boomers." Members of this age group most likely will develop "presbyopia," an age-related change in vision that requires quality eyewear (not drug store imitations) for reading and close-up work like sewing. With record numbers of adults and baby boomers logging on to the Internet, they also need proper eyewear to prevent computer vision problems.

  • Seniors - As we age, proper eyecare and eyewear becomes even more important. The most common problems facing seniors include macular degeneration, cataracts, glaucoma and diabetic retinopathy. All are serious conditions and glaucoma and diabetic retinopathy, if left undetected and untreated, can lead to blindness. Only a qualified eyecare professional can diagnose, and treat, these vision-robbing conditions.

Answer: Insist on quality eyewear that corrects and protects your vision.
Question: Besides regular eye exams, how can I best meet my family's vision needs?

Again, you don't have to be Alex Trebek to understand the importance of quality eyewear. Here's a simple analogy: Have you ever wondered why a diamond costs more than a rhinestone? The same principle holds true for eyewear. Insist upon quality and the performance will exceed your expectations for years to come.

Quality eyewear also serves an important role by protecting your eyes. Sunglasses purchased from a reputable eyecare professional will include all-important UV protection and tint. It's highly unlikely that sunglasses sold in drugstores or on the streets of major cities include this important feature.

What's the difference? UV protection defends your eyes from the sun's harmful rays. Too much sun can lead to cataracts, macular degeneration and photokeratitis, a painful sunburn of the eyes. So the next time you put on suntan lotion, don't forget to protect your eyes with quality sunwear.

And don't overlook the fact that quality eyewear makes a strong fashion statement. Open any magazine and you'll see models wearing stylish eyewear that compliments their clothes and image. By purchasing separate eyewear for the office, social events and sporting activities, you'll also project the right image to your peers and colleagues.

So whether you're a Jeopardy! fan or not, the answer to protecting your eyesight is simple: Get regular eye exams and insist upon quality eyewear from an eyecare professional.

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