myopia

Prevent Myopia, Part V: The Role of Our Schools

Thursday, March 26, 2009 by: Donald Rehm
Tags: myopia, health news, Natural News

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(NaturalNews) Isn't it strange that there is no school board anywhere that makes myopia prevention knowledge available to parents and students? They are entrusted with the care of our children, but ignore the obvious fact that one third of our children are becoming visually impaired as they are taught to read. Even when this information is placed before them, they show absolutely no interest.

In a 2007 response from the Hillsborough County, Florida school system we learned, "Currently, we partner with Lens Crafters, Prevent Blindness and The Lions Club. These groups are very generous in providing optometrical services as well as glasses to students who either failed their vision examination or demonstrate visual problems." The optical industry clearly has gotten its money and its viewpoint into our schools. Many school boards receive free gifts and services from the optical industry, and perhaps they don't want to lose their benefactors by doing anything that might upset them.

During 2008, the International Myopia Prevention Assn. sent a letter to every school superintendent in the nation. There are over 17,000 of them in both public and private schools. We offered to work with them to introduce myopia prevention information into the schools. Not ONE of them replied to our letter. And these are people who usually have Ph.D. degrees. What is the reason for this apathy?

Our laws require that children go to school. Do the schools not have an obligation to insure that they are not permanently harmed during their education? Don't we provide crossing guards at dangerous intersections? Don't we try to protect them from using drugs? Why do we ignore the deterioration of their sight that takes place right before our eyes? Is the public being so successfully manipulated by the optical industry that they have lost their power to think?

Suppose the attitude of our schools was:

"We know we have an unnaturally loud work environment in our schools, but it is an unavoidable part of the education process. We have seen evidence that it is permanently damaging the hearing of our students, but we are not allowed to diagnose or treat anything here. So we provide an excellent testing program and they can show the results to the family hearing specialist where they can get the hearing aids they will need the rest of their lives. We realize that this can be a great bother and financial burden. Of course, we also realize that protection is available that will prevent this damage, but it is not our job to mention this to parents. That is the job of the specialist. Yes, we know that they never mention prevention because they want to sell their products, but that is not our responsibility. And the fact that by ignoring prevention the hearing is almost certain to get worse, requiring stronger and stronger aids, and often resulting in permanent deafness, is not something we want to think about."

Wouldn't that attitude be cause for widespread criticism? Now let's change a few words:

"We know we have an unnaturally close work environment in our schools, but it is an unavoidable part of the education process. We have seen evidence that it is permanently damaging the vision of our students, but we are not allowed to diagnose or treat anything here. So we provide an excellent testing program and they can show the results to the family vision specialist where they can get the eyeglasses they will need the rest of their lives. We realize that this can be a great bother and financial burden. Of course, we also realize that protection is available that will prevent this damage, but it is not our job to mention this to parents. That is the job of the specialist. Yes, we know that they never mention prevention because they want to sell their products, but that is not our responsibility. And the fact that by ignoring prevention the vision is almost certain to get worse, requiring stronger and stronger aids, and often resulting in permanent blindness, is not something we want to think about."

Shouldn't this existing attitude also be cause for criticism? Don't you agree that a major change in our education system is needed to deal with this problem? The goal should be, "No child in our school system will become nearsighted."

Ref:
www.myopia.org
www.preventmyopia.org
The Myopia Myth (book)


About the author

Donald Rehm is president of the International Myopia Prevention Assn., with headquarters in Ligonier, PA. He is the author of the book, "The Myopia Myth - The truth about nearsightedness and how to prevent it." The book can be read on his website http://www.myopia.org . There you will find everything you need to prevent myopia in your family as well as his analysis of why this information is being withheld from the public.

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