Your eyes play a huge role in the way you perceive the world. They can convey a myriad of emotions and allow you to see the wonder of nature, watch your loved ones grow up, and experience everything the world has to offer. When you get older, your eyes, just like other areas of your body, can start to deteriorate, so you need to keep them as healthy as possible, and checked regularly by an ophthalmologist. Here are some of the most common issues that can develop with your eyes as you age, and what you can do to treat them.
Looking After Your Eyes
When you get older, you will start to be more aware of your body and how it reacts to certain things. You might also want to start taking more care of yourself to try and avoid disease and other medical problems. Your eyes should figure into this as well because getting older will also affect your eye health. Eating well is one of the first things you need to do, and for the eyes especially, you want foods that are high in omega-3 fatty acids, zinc, and vitamins C and E. These foods include green vegetables like spinach and kale, salmon, tuna, egg, nuts, and oranges. Smoking is one of the factors that can contribute to poor eye health, so it is a good idea to quit as soon as you can. It won’t only help your eyes, but many other conditions as well. Another way to help your eyes is to wear sunglasses; these need to protect from both UVA and UVB rays to give you the best effect. It can be especially important when you drive because you can’t look away. You need to regularly get your eyes checked to make sure there are no issues. You should also wear glasses or contact lenses, such as those from Lens Pure, if directed to stop your eyesight getting worse.
Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD)
One of the primary causes of reduced vision is age-related macular degeneration or AMD. It affects a tiny part of the eye in the retina that is responsible for sharp central vision. For those that suffer from AMD, it can lead them to have issues reading, writing, driving and identifying different shades of color. Sometimes early signs of AMD can include distorted, fuzzy or shadowy central vision. Unfortunately, one of the leading factors is age, but there are other causes that you can try to identify to reduce the likelihood of developing AMD. One of them is a family history of AMD; if you know of others in your family that have had it, then this should encourage you to be checked regularly. Another is smoking, so if you can quit, you should reduce your chances to some degree. Thankfully, there are ways to spot the early onset of AMD and slow down its progression.
When you have healthy eyes, the lenses inside are usually crystal clear and flexible. That gives you the ability to focus and also see objects clearly. However, when you get older, this lens can start to get a little cloudy and lose its flexible properties which are called cataracts. Eventually, this can spread to the entire lens and cause vision loss. A study showed that around half of Americans could develop cataracts by the age of 75, so the earlier you get your eyes checked, the easier it is to treat. Early signs of cataracts can be cloudy or blurred vision, poor night vision and colors not looking as vivid as before. When you develop cataracts, you can have the lens removed in a small procedure. They can then replace the old lens with an artificial version to help restore your sight.
Diabetic Eye Disease
As the name suggests, diabetic eye disease, or diabetic retinopathy as its also known, is caused by damage to the eye in people with diabetes. Damage to the blood vessels in the retina can cause blood or fluid to leak which can cause damage and vision loss if left untreated. There can also be some damage to the muscles that control the movement of the eyes which can cause double vision and involuntary eye movement. Type 2 diabetes, which can develop later in life, is becoming more common. As a result, these eye conditions are becoming more prevalent. The best way to avoid it is to not develop type 2 diabetes by controlling your diet and your weight. If you already have diabetes, then controlling your blood sugar level and your cholesterol can limit the chances of developing diabetic eye disease. If the disease gets to an advanced stage, then it might be required to perform laser eye treatment to fix the problem.
The term Glaucoma is a collective one that relates to a group of eye disorders that damage the optic nerves. These nerves are responsible for sending information from the eye to the brain and can be easily damaged. There are typically two types of Glaucoma, open-angle or narrow-angle. Open-angle often presents no symptoms, and the person’s vision can stay normal, but narrow-angle can leave vision limited. Most Glaucoma cases involve a higher than normal pressure in the eye that can be detected by the ophthalmologist. Early signs of this high pressure are vision loss leading to problems seeing in dim light, and loss of vision on the outer edges of your normal field. The treatment for glaucoma usually involves trying to reduce the pressure in the eyes. One way to achieve this is by increasing the drainage rate of the eye through surgery. Age is one of the factors for those suffering from Glaucoma, but there is also a link with family history, so if others in your family have had Glaucoma, you should get regular eye checks.
Although there are a number of conditions that can affect the eyes, many of them can be treated if found at an early stage. That is why getting your eyes checked regularly is so important.