One in three elderly people has some kind of vision reducing disease by age 65. The nature of these diseases can vary from person to person, but treatment for any of these can only begin when you correctly identify the symptoms.
Aging eyes are usually susceptible to four common diseases called retinopathy, macular degeneration, glaucoma, and cataract. As we have a look at the warning signs for each of these, you will be able to identify similar problems with your own vision or that of your loved ones.
Having diabetes generally puts you at risk for developing retinopathy as well. Someone with retinopathy will lose their vision due to damaged blood vessels behind their eyes. The common symptoms for this disease include - blurred vision, spots or stings appearing in your visual perception, fluctuations in eyesight or empty spaces in your vision.
These symptoms are best treated immediately, and more severe cases may require laser surgery to restore vision.
Macular degeneration occurs when the eye's macula begin to break, thereby distorting one's vision. Symptoms for this disease mainly include blurred vision, sensitivity to light or glares, and warped images. Generally, in the earlier stages of macular degeneration, doctors prescribe medication and combinations of vitamin supplements.
Ensure that the caregiver you choose is equipped with the right knowledge of the disease to properly care for the aging patient.
There are different types of glaucoma, however, the common factor in every kind of glaucoma is the damage of the eye nerve leading up to the brain.
The most common symptoms observed with glaucoma include eye pain, blurred vision, reddening of the eyes, headaches, nausea and even tunnel vision. Glaucoma at its most extreme results in blindness.
Cataract is a disease that exacerbates over a period of time. The most common symptom of cataracts is blurred vision. This can materialize as a "cloudy" vision or even double vision, in a patient. This is because cataracts appear to create a milky cloud in the eye lens, thereby impairing our vision.
One way to restore vision is to replace this eye lens with an artificial lens through cataract surgery.
How to Care for Aging Eyes
Caring for aging eyes is generally a job that requires constant care and attention. The first thing to do when you recognize these symptoms in a loved one is to make sure you take them to an ophthalmologist immediately. Secondly, you need to ensure that they follow any instructions prescribed by your doctor.
In cases like these, it might be in the best interests of both, you and your loved one to hire a qualified caregiver or companion to make sure that they get the care they need, in an environment, they are familiar with.
Want more insight into companion care services? Here's a quick but informative overview of what to expect.