A Closer Look at the Leading Causes of Low Vision in Seniors

Roughly one out of every three people will have some type of issue that lowers their visual abilities by the time they reach the age of 65. As an aging adult, getting proactive about your visual health is important because of that fact. Here is a look at some of the leading causes of low vision in seniors.

Glaucoma

Glaucoma creates undue stress on the optic nerve, which can lead to blindness and changes to vision. Glaucoma is a leading cause of vision loss and blindness among seniors, but may not always lead to vision loss or blindness.

Age-Related Macular Degeneration

Age-related macular degeneration is one of the leading causes of vision loss for individuals who are over the age of 60. When caught early, the condition can oftentimes be slowed with attentive treatment. However, the disease can cause permanent changes to your vision.

Cataracts

Roughly half of all adults will have cataracts by the time they reach the age of 80. Cataracts are a collection of proteins that can cause cloudiness on the lens of the eye. Your vision may appear hazy or blurred, and you may have problems seeing well in direct sunlight or in low lighting.

Diabetic Retinopathy

Diabetic retinopathy affects as many as 7.7 million adults in the United States and can be more prevalent among seniors with diabetes. Unstable blood sugar levels can cause blood vessels at the back of the retina to leak fluid into the eye, which affects visual abilities.

Look for Low Vision Rehabilitation in Charlotte, NC

Even though low vision can affect your day-to-day life, there may be solutions available that can help. Reach out to us at the office of Dr. Edward Paul, OD, Ph.D. to schedule an appointment for a consultation.

Can I Drive at Night With Low Vision?

Low vision is a common problem that affects millions of people around the world. Living with low vision is possible, but when it comes to driving, taking certain precautions is necessary for safety. Your eyesight should meet a certain standard for safe driving. You should be able to read all the road signs and see pedestrians as you drive during the night. Here are some of the measures you can take to drive safely at night if you have low vision problems:

Avoid Staring at Oncoming Lights

Looking at light sources directly is a major concern while driving at night, especially if you have low vision. Staring at the lights causes the contraction of the pupils, making it hard for drivers to see in the dark. The phenomenon is known as bleaching of the retina. It results in a decreased sensitivity to light. Therefore, ensure you shift your gaze to avoid being blinded by oncoming headlights. Additionally, make sure you aim the exterior mirrors to enable you to move the head away from the light reflected in them.

Wear Specially-Tinted Glasses

If you have low vision, you will experience reduced sensitivity, making it hard to separate objects from a background. As a result, it may be harder for you to see some road signs. Some eyecare professionals may recommend wearing specially-tinted glasses, which help to avoid contrast issues.

Ask Someone to Drive You

One of the things you can do to ensure you are safe is by simply asking a friend or family member with better eyesight to drive. You can inform them in advance so that they can include that in their plans so that neither of you is inconvenient.

Approach Roadblocks With Caution

As a person with low vision, it may be harder for you to spot roadblocks. Ensure you always drive at the set speed limits and be especially careful when you encounter road construction areas.

If you have suspect that you have low vision, please contact our office to book an appointment with one of our eyecare professionals.

 

Telescopic Eyeglasses: What Are They and Who Could Benefit

A large portion of the population relies on eyeglasses to see and get around. However, for some people, just glasses are not enough, and for some, even bifocal or trifocal lenses are also not enough. In these cases, it may be worth looking at telescopic eyeglasses as a possible option.

Telescopic Eyeglasses Explained

Telescopic eyeglasses are specially designed prescription glasses that have miniature binoculars or a monocular mounted in certain positions on the glasses. These glasses are created using an in-depth examination of the patient’s visual abilities, with the telescopic parts of the glasses designed to help the patient see more clearly when performing certain actions. For example, the telescopic components may be used when:

  • Driving
  • Watching television
  • Reading
  • Watching wildlife

The glasses usually have the telescopic monocular or binocular positioned in just the right position so the individual wearing the glasses can adjust their head position to look through the lenses.

Who Could Benefit from These Unique Glasses?

Anyone who has a hard time performing certain tasks because of visual limitations could benefit from telescopic eyeglasses. With just a simple adjustment of the head position or eye direction, the individual can better see what it is they are peering at because they are looking through the telescopic lens. For instance, if someone normally has a hard time reading a fast-food menu, the patient could simply peer at the menu through the telescopic lenses.

Talk to Us About Telescopic Glasses in Charlotte, NC 

The eyes and the visual capabilities of every person can be so unique, and, sometimes, it takes a unique solution to help someone see better. If you believe you could be a good candidate for telescopic eyeglasses, reach out to us at the office of Dr. Edward Paul, OD, Ph.D., a skilled and caring eye doctor serving Willmington and Charlotte.

How to Make the Most of Your Remaining Vision

It can feel devastating to receive a professional diagnosis of low vision. You may be worried about your ability to perform your daily activities such as driving, supervising little ones, reading or even cooking. However, with the tips listed below, you can make the most of your remaining vision.

Decorate With Contrasting Colors

Discerning between colors is a common problem for those with low vision. If you decorate with contrasting colors it will make navigating your home much easier.

Use Bigger Fonts

When working on your computer, use the tools available to make all of the fonts larger. This will reduce eyestrain and help to protect your remaining vision.

Invest In Magnifying Lenses

Keep a few magnifying lenses around your home and in your purse or pocket. When you shop for groceries or need to read the small food labels or recipes in your kitchen, the magnifying lens will be your best friend.

Keep Everything In Its Place

If you always keep certain items in the same place, you won’t have to struggle to search for them around your home. Do the same thing with your automobile. Keep spare change, sunglasses and anything else that you commonly use in the same place, such as the middle console or the glove box.

Wear Only UV-Rated Sunglasses

UV light can damage your eyes. Make sure that you only wear either prescription sunglasses, or UV-rated sunglasses that you can buy over-the-counter. This will help to protect your remaining vision.

Move Things Closer

You don’t want to strain your eyes any more than necessary. If you’re fond of watching television, Move your TV and chair closer together so that you don’t have to squint in order to watch your favorite programs.

With some care and attention, you can ensure that you make the most of your remaining vision. For more information about low vision needs, please contact your eye doctor.