The week focuses on bringing awareness to TED through emphasis on mental health and art therapy solutions.
Prevent Blindness has declared the week of November 13-19 as the fourth annual Thyroid Eye Disease (TED) Awareness Week.1
Also known as Grave’s Disease, TED is an autoimmune disease in which the immune system causes inflammation and swelling and also stimulates the production of muscle tissue and fat behind the eye. The increased amounts of tissue, muscles and fat behind the eye cause the eyes to bulge outward.
In some cases, the eye may be pushed forward enough causing the eyelids to not close properly while sleeping or blinking. While in severe cases it could lead to vision loss.
A previous study showed that those who suffer from TED are more likely to suffer from depression and anxiety, which highlights the psychosocial impact of TED and associated socioeconomic risk factors.2
Due to this, Prevent Blindness will debut a new episode in the Focus on Eye Health Expert Series titled, “Thyroid Eye Disease and Mental Wellness.” In the episode, Prem Subramanian, MD, PhD, Clifford R and Janice N Merrill Endowed Chair in Ophthalmology and Vice Chair for Academic Affairs at Sue Anschutz-Rodgers Eye Center, UCHealth, discusses the potential impact on mental health, and the importance of patient and healthcare provider communication to help improve health outcomes.1
“Now in our 4th consecutive year, we are proud to continue to educate the public and provide patients and care partners with support for Thyroid Eye Disease,” said Jeff Todd, Prevent Blindness president and CEO. “Our goal is to provide comprehensive TED resources to empower patients, and encourage them to discuss their diagnosis, as well as any changes in mental health, to help limit the impact that TED may have on their health and quality of life.”
Prevent Blindness also offers TED patients and care partners the Prevent Blindness Art Therapy Program, designed to build community and connections among those affected by TED and provide the opportunity to create art using a variety of artistic media to express thoughts and feelings.