Macular degeneration, which affects people over the age of 60, is a major contributor to low vision and blindness. While there is currently no cure for this eye condition, there are several preventive measures that can help lower your chances of experiencing deteriorating eyesight as you get older. This guide provides a comprehensive overview of macular degeneration symptoms and the steps you can take to avert this prevalent eye disorder.
Age-related macular degeneration is one of the leading causes of low vision and blindness over the age of 60. Although this eye condition has no known cure, there are many preventative factors that can reduce your risk of developing poor eyesight as you age. Here is everything you need to know about the signs of macular degeneration and how you can prevent this common eye disease.
What is Macular Degeneration?
Macular degeneration is an age-related eye disease that develops as the central part of the retina deteriorates. Macular degeneration causes gradually worsening or blurred vision and can result in total vision loss if not treated early.
Symptoms of Macular Degeneration
If you have blurriness, wavy lines, or blind spots, these may be signs of macular degeneration or other vision problems. Other visual distortions resulting from macular degeneration include straight lines, faces that appear wavy, doorways that look crooked, and objects appearing smaller or farther away than they are.
Risk Factors for Macular Degeneration
The exact cause of macular degeneration is not known but there are a few factors that can put people at risk. Some of the highest risk factors for age-related macular degeneration include:
- High blood pressure
- High cholesterol
How to Reduce Your Risk for Macular Degeneration
A few simple changes to your daily lifestyle and habits can have a significant on your eyes and overall health. These habits can be started early to prevent eye disease and early vision loss.
Eating a diet of green leafy vegetables, omega-3 fatty acids, and limited fatty foods can maintain your overall health and the health of your eyes. Green vegetables like kale, spinach, and collard greens have many necessary vitamins and minerals. Fatty fish like salmon, mackerel, and albacore tuna are great sources of omega-3.
Exercising regularly (in combination with a healthy diet) can keep your blood pressure and cholesterol levels at a healthy level. Exercise will also prevent obesity. Keeping your entire body healthy will inevitably keep your eyes healthy too.
The sun can have a detrimental effect on eye health. On sunny days. It can be easily prevented by wearing UV protection, such as sunglasses and a wide-brimmed hat or visor to protect your eyes from harmful UV rays (ultraviolet light).
Improving the light in your home to reduce glare, increasing the print size on your phone, and using a magnifier for small text have helped patients with AMD better manage their daily tasks. Additionally, quitting smoking and reducing secondhand smoke is recommended for those with AMD.
Contact Us Today
It is especially important to have an annual eye exam as you get older since the risk of developing poor eyesight increases. If you think you are exhibiting symptoms of macular degeneration and/or wish to schedule an eye exam, please schedule an appointment today at one of our offices in Boca Raton or Tamarac, FL.