With age, you might have difficulty focusing on objects up close. You may become more sensitive to glare and have trouble adapting to different levels of light.
Let’s look at some of the more common eye problems related to aging:
An inevitable problem that comes with aging eyes is Cataracts. This condition happens to both men and women. A cataract is the clouding of the lens of the eye. Occurring over time, they typically reach the point of obstructing vision in your 60’s. Note that the cataract process can’t be reversed or stopped; Doctors treat it by removing the clouded lens, typically replacing it with an artificial lens. Age, eye trauma, and certain medical disorders like diabetes can all cause cataracts.
When having cataract surgery, doctors replace the natural lens with an intraocular lens. There are a variety of lens implants currently available including multifocal implants that can allow you to see up close as well as at a distance.
Age-related Macular Degeneration (AMD)
Age-related macular degeneration arises when the “Macula”, the part of the eye responsible for our central vision, is damaged. Though this condition leads to blurred or distorted vision, it does not cause total blindness.
Supplemental nutrition can be advantageous for those with early-stage AMD. However, in the case of severe AMD, Medications, injections and Laser treatments may be of benefit to the patient. There are two types of age-related macular degeneration, broadly referred to as dry AMD and wet AMD.
- Dry AMD– Dry AMD can happen in one eye or both eyes, and it is more common than wet AMD. It reduces your ability to read, drive and identify faces, but it doesn’t mean you will lose your complete vision. You can delay vision loss due to this condition by taking self-care measures and consulting the optometrist at Goodrich Optical. Dry AMD develops slowly but without pain in the early stages, typically early symptoms such as visual distortions, reduced central vision, blurry spots, may be evident.
- Wet AMD– Wet AMD is less common than Dry but can lead to severe vision loss. This condition occurs when blood vessels start growing abnormally. Wet AMD causes your eyes to ‘leak’ fluid and blood, hence the name wet. This condition progresses quickly but is often treatable with the right care. Some symptoms of wet AMD are gaps or dark spots, straight lines, words disappearing while reading, and color fading.
Glaucoma is a set of changes occurring in the eye that relates to damage to the eye’s optic nerve, which leads to vision loss and blindness. Everyone who is over 60 is at risk of developing it. This condition arises when the pressure inside the eye increase causing damage.
Though there are different types of glaucoma, the most common is open-angle glaucoma which grows slowly and does not show symptoms at early stages. If glaucoma is not treated in time, it leads to irreversible vision loss.
There are many simple things you can do to improve your age-related eye condition. Having a yearly eye exam is at the top of the list. Along with taking care of your eyes if you have diabetes or a family history of eye problems.
What you can do
To promote good eye health:
- Schedule regular checkups. Follow your doctor’s advice about glasses, contact lenses.
- Take precautions. Wear sunglasses or a wide-brimmed hat when you’re outdoors, and eat a healthy low-fat diet, rich in dark green leafy vegetables.