Community Papers

Speak Your Mind–IRIS Eye Care

Nicole Alderman, local representative of Platinum Sponsor IRIS Eye Care Centre for the 2014 Kootenay Women’s Show. - Photo Wells Photographic Design
Nicole Alderman, local representative of Platinum Sponsor IRIS Eye Care Centre for the 2014 Kootenay Women’s Show.
— image credit: Photo Wells Photographic Design

Melanie Hajjar is the Web Marketing Director for Platinum Sponsor, IRIS The Visual Group and responded to questions from the group’s head office concerning women and eye care in advance of Speak Your Mind, The 2014 Kootenay Women’s Show.


Q:  Are their vision issues that affect women more than men and what can be done about them? “

A: One of the most common concerns of patients that present to Optometry clinics revolve around dry eye symptoms. In the Kootenays, these symptoms  are exacerbated due to how dry our climate is and our patients present with varying symptoms from mild irritation to severe  and debilitating dry eyes that can have a profound effect on their quality of life.  Dry eye syndrome is more common in women than men, especially in women over the age of 40. Another area of optometry a lot of women ask about is regarding their concerns for their children’s ocular health.

By their very nature women are more attentive to their children’s health, including ocular health and visual problems.  But what many people do not realize is that there are numerous pediatric ocular conditions that too easily and too often go undiscovered and untreated that can have long-lasting  and drastic effects  on not only a child’s vision, but the course that they take in life.  For instance:  a 30 year old saw Dr. Langer, Optometrist recently, he reported always  having excellent vision but he was a slow reader and “wasn’t  book smart” so he avoided reading and further education.  During the eye exam Dr. Langer discovered that the cause for his poor reading abilities was not at all due to cognitive ability, but simply excess  strain on his visual system  during near tasks.  With proper glasses he immediately stated his reading ability doubled in speed and ease and he was suddenly able to absorb the material much easier and reading is now actually enjoyable  for this patient.

Women are often more active; active with their kids’ school programs and sports teams, their own social networks,  churches, hobbies, volunteer work, etc, and it is this exhaustively active lifestyle that puts their bodies - and eyes - through the gauntlet of their schedules every single day.  It is only with the proper eyewear solutions handpicked for their visual demands that we can achieve the highest level of comfort, efficiency and clarity during their various daily tasks. No one’s eyes are the same, no one’s visual demands are the same, and everyone  has their own unique personality and style, so we shouldn’t all be in the same frame and lens solution.  This is why at IRIS, we spend a portion of every eye exam getting to know our patients; their hobbies, interests, work environment, all to better understand what we like to call their “IRIS Profile”: what their eyes are going through every day.  It is only after knowing these important details about a person’s everyday activities  that we can accurately  pick a personalized solution to those specific visual demands.  Your eyes are unique, your visual demands are unique, your taste and style is unique, therefore your visual solution(s)  should be unique as well.

Q: Is there a woman in business or other area of life (arts, culture, sports, etc.) that has inspired you?

A: Shirin Neshat: photographer, videographer, director. I am inspired by her ability to use different medias to shed light on and bring world wide attention to the political and social lives of women in Iran.

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