As someone gets older, health problems generally come with age. Some of these problems are with the eyes. If you are getting older, below are two eye conditions you should watch out for so you will know when it is time to visit your optometrist.
According to the American Academy of Ophthalmology, by the age of 75, approximately 50% of Americans suffer with cataracts. If you have cataracts, it will look like you are looking through a cloud.
Besides cloudy vision, you may have other symptoms including:
- Colors look faded
- Double vision
- Blurry vision
- Poor night vision
- Glare from lights bother you more
The lenses in your eyes are clear, and they help you focus when you are looking at something. The image or light passes through the clear lenses to the retinas that is located at the back of your eyes. If the lenses are not clear, the retina cannot see a sharp image so instead makes your vision cloudy. In most cases, you will have cataracts in both of your eyes but sometimes only one eye is affected.
The only way a cataract can be treated is with cataract surgery or cataract replacement.
Age-Related Macular Degeneration
Age-related macular degeneration, also known as AMD, is a disease that affects the center of your retina. If you have this problem, you will have central vision loss. The macula is very small but it is an important part of your retina. This is because it allows you to see colors and fine details. If you have this problem, you would have problems with watching television, driving, recognizing faces, and reading. Your side vision, known as your peripheral vision, is not affected by AMD.
There is no cure for AMD, but there are treatments that can slow the progression or prevent severe vision loss.
One type of treatment is injecting medication into your eyes. This medication blocks leakage from your eyes that is caused by abnormal vessels in your eyes. This medication also stops new blood vessels from developing. This treatment has worked well with people, and some people have even gotten a lot of their vision back.
Another type of treatment is using a laser light to destroy any abnormal blood vessels that may be growing. Your eye doctor may choose to use both of these treatment methods, depending on the severity of your AMD.
If you are concerned about these eye conditions, contact your optometrist. They can go over each one of these in much more detail with you.