This time of year is filled with family, friends, and good time cheer. It is also a good time to reflect on things that can be passed down from generation to generation other than Aunt Suzie’s pie recipe.
As many as 11 million people have some form of age related Macular Degeneration and it is projected to double in 2050 according to Bright Focus Foundation. There are two types of Macular Degeneration; Wet and Dry. The dry form of macular degeneration, in which the light sensitive cells of the macula slowly break down, is the most common type, accounting for 90 percent of diagnosed cases. Wet macular degeneration accounts for approximately 10 percent of cases, but results in 90 percent of legal blindness. It is considered advanced macular degeneration (there is no early or intermediate stage of wet macular degeneration). Wet macular degeneration is always preceded by the dry form of the disease. Age-related macular degeneration is an irreversible destruction of the macula, which leads to loss of the sharp, fine-detail, “straight ahead” vision required for activities like reading, driving, recognizing faces, and seeing the world in color. Although there is no cure for Macular Degeneration, if caught early, there are things you can do to slow down its progression. Things like eating a diet that is high in fruits, vegetables, and fish, keeping your blood sugar in normal range, exercise regularly, don’t smoke, and protect your Macula from the harmful rays of the sun with a good pair of polarized sunglasses.
There are a few warning signs that you can look out for such as:
- Reduced central vision
- Visual distortions, such as straight lines seeming bent
- Decreased intensity or brightness of colors
- Difficulty recognizing faces
Although we can start seeing signs of Macular Degeneration at any age, most people will see a shift around the age of 50. If you do have someone like Aunt Suzie in your family that has Macular Degeneration, wet or dry, it is imperative that you talk to your eye care professional about it so they can get you on a good vitamin for your eye such as, Preservision. Here at Cameron Optical your eye health is our number one priority. We are equipped with our Optical Coherence Tomography that can detect the slightest hint of Macular Degeneration before the effects are visible to a human eye. As with any disease, early detection is the best so make having a yearly eye exam a priority!
We hope you have a Christmas full of happy cheer and lots of Aunt Suzie’s pie! See you in the new year!