Maintaining Your Vision

4 Tips For Maintaining Your Vision as You Age

Age-related vision loss remains common today, and experts predict more people will be impacted by vision loss in the coming decades. Any vision loss is troublesome, as it can interfere with daily activities. What causes this loss, and how can it be slowed or halted?

Problems Associated with Vision Loss

When a person experiences vision loss, many problems occur. They may have mobility issues and get injured more often. Depression and anxiety may accompany vision loss, while cognitive decline is also a concern. Vision loss can lead to a shortened life expectancy. Researchers continue to study ways to minimize vision loss. Learn more about Alimera Sciences and other companies working to protect vision today.

What Brings About These Changes?

Genetics plays a role in vision loss associated with aging, as does the natural aging process. What changes occur in the eye as a person gets older?

The lens becomes less flexible, which makes it harder for a person to switch their near-to-far focus. The lens may also become discolored, making it harder for the person to process light. The muscle responsible for controlling pupil size and its reaction when exposed to light weakens, and tear production declines.

Most people begin seeing these changes when they turn 40. Presbyopia becomes more common at this age. Older individuals often struggle to see nearby objects, particularly in low-light conditions. They may find it hard to distinguish between colors and need more light to see things clearly. Their eyes take more time to adjust between bright and dark settings, and they may get a headache or experience eye strain when doing close-up activities.

Eye conditions frequently seen in older individuals include eye floaters and dry eyes. Cataracts are common in older individuals, and everyone needs to undergo regular testing for glaucoma. Retinal disorders such as age-related macular degeneration are common concerns in the elderly. Genetics play a role in a person’s risk of vision loss as they age, but there are things men and women can do to reduce the risk of this vision loss.

Caring for Vision

The following tips are essential when caring for your vision. Remember them at all times to protect your sight from harm. Vision loss is not inevitable. In many cases, treatments are available to slow or halt its progression.

  • Regular eye exams help identify these problems early when treatments are most effective. Yearly eye exams are recommended for most individuals. Individuals with a family history of vision loss, glaucoma, diabetes, or high blood pressure may need to see the eye doctor more often.
  • Wear sunglasses when outside to protect the eyes from UV exposure. UV rays can harm the cornea, lens, and eye tissues. This damage increases a person’s risk of cataracts and other eye problems.
  • Avoid smoking. Smoking puts a person more at risk of AMD, cataracts, diabetic retinopathy, dry eye, and glaucoma. High blood pressure can also cause retinal damage, optic nerve damage, and fluid buildup. Eat a healthy diet to slow the progression of AMD and other conditions that affect the eyes.
  • Get plenty of exercise, and see the eye doctor regularly.

Regular eye exams allow problems to be caught early, which is essential because many eye conditions have no symptoms. However, if you experience sudden changes in vision, eye pain, or flashes of light, make an appointment right away. Do the same if you have double or tunnel vision or swelling and redness around the eyes. These are all signs of a rapidly advancing eye condition or health issue that could lead to permanent vision loss. Seek help right away to prevent this from happening.

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