Are you worried that an eye problem you’ve started experiencing could result from aging? It’s natural to begin to wonder about an aging body the older we get.
We all start to experience common eye problems with age, but as we all know, most of our vision relies on our eyes. So, what kind of eye problems are we looking at?
We will go through some of the most common eye problems below. That way, you can work out what you need to do next to get checked out by a doctor.
Read on to learn more and to cut your worry and headache out.
Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD)
Age-related changes within the macula, the part of the eye responsible for central vision, cause it. AMD causes progressive deterioration of the macula, resulting in symptoms such as:
- blurred central vision
- distorted vision
- permanent vision loss
These issues can be treated and managed correctly by wearing corrective lenses, taking prescribed medications, or undergoing surgery when necessary. Early diagnosis is critical to minimizing these diseases’ impact and preserving vision for as long as possible.
Cataracts occur when the lens inside the eye becomes cloudy, usually due to biochemical changes that occur in the lens as we age. Cataracts can be treated with varying levels of success by medical and non-medical treatments.
Medical treatments include surgical removal of the cataract via a procedure called phacoemulsification. Non-medical treatments include wearing glasses, corrective lenses, and sunglasses to block out bright light and protect the eyes.
A healthy diet and lifestyle can help strengthen the eye to prevent other cataracts, and wearing eye protection is recommended. Early diagnosis and treatment of cataracts are essential to avoid vision loss.
Presbyopia is caused by a gradual hardening of the eye’s lens, making it increasingly difficult to focus on close objects. As a result, people with presbyopia experience blurred vision and difficulty focusing on things close up, such as books or phones. Presbyopia can be corrected with glasses, contact lenses, or laser surgery.
It is essential to get regular eye exams to ensure age-related eye conditions, such as presbyopia, is not impacting your vision. Additionally, lifestyle factors such as smoking, diet, and physical activity can contribute to the development of presbyopia. Keeping your lifestyle healthy is essential in preserving your vision.
Diabetic Retinopathy is an age-related common eye problem that can affect people with diabetes. People who suffer from this condition typically have high blood sugar levels, which can cause damage to the blood vessels in the retina. In extreme cases, the retina can become completely detached, leading to blindness.
Symptoms of this condition include blurry vision, difficulty seeing at night, double vision, and floating spots in the field of vision. Treatment for diabetic Retinopathy usually involves laser surgery to seal leaking blood vessels or anti-VEGF injections.
Glaucoma is one of the most common eye problems seen in older individuals. It is an eye disease where high pressure builds up in the eye, which can damage the optic nerve and cause vision changes or even vision loss. The early stages of glaucoma do not cause any symptoms, so regular checkups with an optometrist are essential for early detection.
Medications and treatments are available to help reduce eye pressure and prevent further damage. Regular eye exams are essential for detecting and preventing age-related eye problems.
Dry Eye Syndrome
This is when the eyes become dry and sore due to the surface of the eyes not being adequately hydrated. Symptoms can include irritation, burning, redness, and grittiness. It can severely affect vision and can cause difficulty with performing activities.
Dry eye syndrome is caused by factors such as:
- decreased tear production
- hormone changes
- age-related changes
Treatment usually involves artificial tears, ointments, and supplements. In more severe cases, a doctor will prescribe medication to help relieve symptoms, especially if you experience dry eyes in the morning. Making sure to wear sunglasses outdoors and avoiding long periods in front of a computer and television can also help manage this problem.
Floaters occur when the vitreous, the clear fluid that fills the back of the eye, starts to shrink and thicken. Small clumps of protein and other tiny particles form in the vitreous and cause shadows on the retina, causing the floaters.
As we age, the vitreous changes shape and density making the floaters more apparent. Floaters are harmless if they obstruct your vision or increase in number or size. You should seek medical attention as this could indicate a more serious eye condition.
A detached retina is one of the most common eye problems with age. It is a condition where the retina becomes separated from the layer of blood vessels that supply it with oxygen and nourishment. When the retina is detached, it can cause blindness in the affected eye.
Symptoms can include flashes of light, floaters, or a shadow that blocks out part of the vision. A detached retina can occur due to age-related degenerative changes, such as partial atrophy or trauma causing eye trauma.
It is a condition that causes eyelashes to grow inward and rub against the eye, causing irritation, inflammation, and damage. Symptoms can include the following:
- ocular discharge
- changes to the appearance
Treatment consists of surgically removing the affected eyelashes, occluding the affected eyelid, or extracting the fake lashes using an electrolysis procedure. It is essential to see your eye doctor regularly to prevent the progression of trichiasis and any other eye problems that can occur with age.
As a person ages, their eyes suffer from decreased flexibility, leading to farsightedness and nearsightedness. The frequently changing images and text on computer screens, paired with the increased time spent looking at screens, can cause intense eyestrain.
To reduce eyestrain risk, individuals should take regular rest breaks, ensure the text size is large enough, utilize proper lighting, and increase fonts on laptops. Doing so can help minimize eyestrain risk, allowing individuals to maintain optimal vision at any age.
Understanding the Common Eye Problems With Age
Eye problems with age are widespread and affect individuals differently. To keep your vision healthy throughout aging, you must schedule regular eye exams, eat a balanced diet, and wear protective eyewear.
Don’t wait until it’s too late to take care of your sight- contact your doctor to schedule an eye exam today.
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