Authors
Jamie Enoch, MSc; Leanne McDonald, MSc; Lee Jones, PhD

Evaluating Whether Sight Is the Most Valued Sense

publication date
October 3, 2019
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Abstract/Introduction

Importance: Sight is often considered to be the sense most valued by the general public, but there are limited empirical data to support this. This study provides empirical evidence for frequent assertions made by practitioners, researchers, and funding agencies that sight is the most valued sense.

Objective: To determine which senses are rated most valuable by the general public and quantify attitudes toward sight and hearing loss in particular.

Design, Setting, and Participants: This cross-sectional web-based survey was conducted from March to April 2016 through a market research platform and captured a heterogeneous sample of 250 UK adults ages 22 to 80 years recruited in March 2016. The data were analyzed from October to December 2018.

Main Outcomes and Measures: Participants were first asked to rank the 5 traditional senses (sight, hearing, touch, smell, and taste) plus 3 other senses (balance, temperature, and pain) in order of most valuable (8) to least valuable (1). Next, the fear of losing sight and hearing was investigated using a time tradeoff exercise. Participants chose between 10 years without sight/hearing vs varying amounts of perfect health (from 0-10 years).


Conclusion/Results

Results: Of 250 participants, 141 (56.4%) were women and the mean (SD) age was 49.5 (14.6) years. Two hundred twenty participants (88%) ranked sight as their most valuable sense (mean [SD] rating, 7.8 [0.9]; 95% CI, 7.6-7.9). Hearing was ranked second (mean [SD] rating, 6.2 [1.3]; 95% CI 6.1-6.4) and balance third (mean [SD] rating, 4.9 [1.7]; 95% CI, 4.7-5.1). All 3 were ranked above the traditional senses of touch, taste, and smell (F7 = 928.4; P < .001). The time tradeoff exercise indicated that, on average, participants preferred 4.6 years (95% CI, 4.2-5.0) of perfect health over 10 years without sight and 6.8 years (95% CI, 6.5-7.2) of perfect health over 10 years without hearing (mean difference between sight and hearing, 2.2 years; P < .001).

Conclusions and Relevance: In a cross-sectional survey of UK adults from the general public, sight was the most valued sense, followed by hearing. These results suggest that people would on average choose 4.6 years of perfect health over 10 years of life with complete sight loss, although how this generalizes to other parts of the world is unknown.


Testimonials


Vision therapy is well worth the response, time and effort. Our Son had a hard time focusing and writing neatly. After vision therapy Seth could complete a task in half the time if previously took. His abilities to focus improved greatly and so did his handwriting.

Also, he was better at listening. As a parent, we wanted learning to be fun for our Son, and vision therapy made this possible.


Amanda T.

Vision Therapy is well worth the expense, time and effort. Our son had a hard time focusing handwriting neatly. After vision therapy Seth could complete a task in half the time it previously took his abilities to focus and improved greatly and so did his handwriting.

Also, he was better at listening. As a parent you wanted learning to be fun for our son and vision therapy made this possible.


Alexa H.

Vision Therapy has given or son the tools he needs to be able to scan and read the written word more effectively and efficiently.

He love working with John and these working sessions give him the motivation to gladly work on his homework assignments.

It amazed us to see the difference in the tracking of his eyes and along a line of it's from the beginning to the end of the treatment.

Dr. McBryar , Kristen and John  are all marvelous and we would recommend them to anyone I only wish that we would have found them sooner!


Charlotte M.

Prior to coming to the institute for vision development my son complained of daily headaches. Therapy has eliminated his headaches completely. I love knowing my son is able to learn pain-free for the rest of his life because of the work that has been done over just a few weeks in this office. He he absolutely loved coming that didn't even feel like going to a doctor or therapy. We are grateful for the relief he was able to find by coming here.

Thank you!


Olivia C.

Seems much less frustrated with life

Reads non-stop and fast

Spelling abilities have been hugely improved

Seems much more confident

Thank You!!!


Kelly O.

When we first came to the practice, my son did not have huge issues, but lots of small ones- trouble with reading, sports (hitting the baseball consistently), coordination, etc- that were not easily detectable,but when put together presented issues. The staff here were all very professional and loving towards him. While I was concerned in the reading, my son was concerned with the athletic side. Seeing improvement night off the bat gave him confidence that i have nor seen in him and made him want to not only Come to therapy, but also made him want to work hard. He has surpassed his grade level and above in reading and hit his first home run this year! Thank you!!!


Alice M.
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