Sleep And Eye Health- Opportunities For Eyecare Professionals

Audrey Hepburn: Breakfast At Tiffanys

I started this post because after reading this article on the untapped market for eye health supplements, I realized that many offices may not realize the opportunities that go beyond lutein, fish oil and the like. Sleep disorders are a huge market potential that 1.) Effect eye health 2.) Can be helped by the optical professional 3.) Offer an opportunity to increase income while helping your patients feel better. 4.) Set  you apart from your competition 5.) Open up a new markets

There is quite a bit of research about the benefits of sleep, eye health, glaucoma,  My suggestion: Make this a monthly topic of discussion in staff meetings. It a knowledge, preventive medicine and  customer service issue. The more you can help your patients, the more referrals you will get.

Eye Bogglers

  • Estimated people with insomnia: 10%- 20%
  • About 50% of adults over 65 have some type of sleeping disorder
  • Estimated Americans with Sleep Apnea- 20 Million
  • It is estimated that the average untreated sleep apnea patient’s health care costs $1,336 more than an individual without sleep apnea. If approximations are correct, 17 million untreated individuals account for $22,712 million,or almost 23 billion in health care costs.
  • Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) affects 9% of women and 24% of men between the ages of 30 and 60 years old
  • We found that overall, about two-thirds of high school students are getting insufficient sleep on an average school night,” said study author Danice Eaton, a research scientist at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta. Eaton added that females, blacks and students in higher grades tended to get the least shut-eye.
So what can you do?
  1. Form strategic alliances with local bedding and mattress stores.
  2. In your reception room: Place information in your Eye Health Notebook, If you are using Digital Signage program like EyeStarTV, make sure you have a sleep video, In your website or blog, talk about the importance of sleep and eye health.
  3. Merchandise Your office to showcase ‘sleep remedies’. Set aside a special area’ GOT SLEEP’  showcase sleep masks, nutraceuticals, ear plugs and offer a Top Ten List of how to get better sleep.
  4. Offer Sleep Masks: Studies have proven that people get more and better sleep in the dark and with quiet.
  5. Put in some lilac essential oils, which helps people sleep. (I actually sprinkle a few drops in my wash)
Sleep Masks- First, I don’t travel anywhere without my sleep mask. Not that I use all the time, but there is nothing worse than not getting sleep. Sleep masks are not just for people with insomnia, business travelers and people that work graveyard shifts and have to sleep during the day are just a few markets for sleep masks.
Not a lot of optical Vendors offer sleep masks, but we always turn to Hilco, who of course has a sleep mask available.
Hilco Beauty Sleep Mask #165-0000140-00

Bottom line: At least 20% of your patients have problems sleeping. That 20% can mean additional income, 20% can mean new markets, 20% can mean new referral sources, 20% can mean additional opportunities to form strategic alliances, 20% can mean loyal long term patients.

Think about it, S


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