Disclosure: I am the Hispanicize Transitions Ambassador for 2014. I have been provided this cool pair of eye glasses with Transitions lenses. All opinions about my experience are my own.
One of the first things your Doctor recommends once you get a Type 2 Diabetes diagnosis is that you have your eyes checked (along with a foot exam and a visit to a Endocrinologist) and for good reason. Diabetes can cause blindness and Diabetic retinopathy, a common diabetic eye disease is the leading cause of blindness in American adults. It is caused by changes in the blood vessels of the retina. So since my diagnosis, I have been getting regular checkups.
In recent months… I found that it has becoming increasingly hard for me to read due to blurriness. I was getting headaches and my eyes would water up when I was really tired, so I decided to get help. I am big on word of mouth recommendations, so I asked my friend who knows a lot about eye care for some direction, she immediately recommended Transitions Lenses… I thought to myself… I know the transitions people, I have met them at Hispanicize, seen the presentation about eye wellness, follow them on social and they have even partnered with the Por Tu Familia committee on the American Diabetes Expo in NYC. So I called my friend Vivian for some guidance on how I can get thru this.
I asked Vivian to send me to a very knowledgeable Eye Doctor that would take time to really help me explore options, answer questions and help me really understand what I need to do to care for my eyes. She recommended “Dr. Romeu” from West New York. Now West New York (aka Little Havana) is about 2 hours away from where I live, but Vivian said she is the best, so I made the appointment.
When I arrived to the office, I felt like I arrived to visit Familia. The atmosphere of the office is very warm and friendly (they even offered me some Cuban coffee). Most importantly, Dr. Romeu and her team took time to explain the testing I was about to undergo and some basic info about eye care. I will spare you the details but it was found that I would need to start wearing glasses for reading. In addition I do spend a lot of time outdoors so protecting my eyes from UV Rays was also a concern. The experience was great and I did find a perfect pair of Lacoste frames that I thought made me look smart and trendy.
My frames feature Chromea7, a technology was designed to be even more reactive to indirect light. Indirect light can come from many sources such as light bouncing off buildings, cars, or other surfaces or light filtering through trees or clouds. The lenses can sense this light, even when you’re facing away from it, and adjust to the appropriate shade for your situation. [you can learn more about Transitions here]
It turns out that my prescription did not to be that strong at all…and that my need for glasses is not even really related to my diagnosis. In my family, every one had glasses before their 30’s. The fact that I have enjoyed perfect eyesight for 42 years is a blessing and hopefully means that I will have healthier eyesight longer than someone in my age group. Besides some amazing looking frames, I received some valuable education on how my eyes work and what eye wellness really entails.
Dr. Romeu also let me know that vision problems can affect anyone, Latinos are more likely to develop eye and overall health issues that can take a serious toll on their vision and quality of life. Research has shown that these same groups are often less likely to take preventive steps to protect their eye health, and language and cultural barriers can make it even more challenging for them to receive adequate eye care. This will be a part of my 2014 Por Tu Familia agenda as we get closer to Feria De Salud.
I want to thank Dr. Romeu, Dr. Gurdack and the Transitions team for helping me thru what could have potentially a very awkward situation. As one of the newest Transitions ambassadors, I will do my best to make sure that people have access to the amazing resources that Transitions made available to me.
Buen Provecho…George Torres The Urban Jibaro
Cultivando Cultura since 1997… Connect with me on the network of your choice.