While no cure exists for this condition, some of the treatments consist of contact lenses, medication, glasses and even surgical interventions
International Nystagmus Awareness Day is observed annually on 20 June to bring attention to nystagmus, a condition that causes severe vision problems. It leads to what is commonly referred to as “dancing eyes” condition, wherein the eyes makes repetitive movements either side to side or in circular motion.
What is the history and significance of the day?
The day aims to draw attention to nystagmus and make people aware about the treatment available. The Nystagmus Network, a registered charity in England and Wales which funds research on the condition, celebrates the day annually.
The Nystagmus Network was established in 1984. It is to be noted that those who suffer from nystagmus need assistance in accessing employment, education and health opportunities. The day is important for those who suffer from this condition as it gives them an opportunity to speak about their issues.
What are the different types of Nystagmus condition?
Jerk Nystagmus: In this, the eyes jerk quickly in one direction which is then followed by slow movements in the opposite direction.
Pendular Nystagmus: The eyes move with equal speed like a pendulum swinging back and forth.
What are the awareness programmes held today?
Nystagmus Network usually conducts research workshops. It organises the Raindrops competition of photography for adults, along with storywriting and drawing competitions for children in the UK. The day aims to encourage patients to focus on their creativity and overcome the psychological effects of the disease through positive activities.
What is the treatment available?
While no cure exists for this condition, some of the treatments consist of contact lenses, medication, glasses and even surgical interventions. However, it is to be noted that early treatment is crucial. A physician or an expert first determines the type of Nystagmus a person has, investigates the cause and determines the best approach to treatment.