According to the National Eye Institute, close to 3.3 million people in America who are 40 years or older are blind or have low vision, which translates to 1 in every 28 people. According to the National Eye Institute, the four most common eye problems that Americans face are cataracts, glaucoma, diabetic retinopathy and age-related macular degeneration.
This is an eye condition where the eye’s clear lens becomes cloudy. The condition is progressive and eventually can affect both eyes and severely impair vision. The risk factors for cataracts include diabetes, eye trauma, genetics, pregnancy-related complications, overexposure to ultraviolet rays, and smoking. Generally, cataract surgery in Warren is only recommended once the condition starts to significantly affect the activities of daily living.
Glaucoma is an eye condition where the eye pressure increases resulting in damage to the optic nerve, which can lead to blindness. Most often, the symptoms are not apparent until it is too late, this is why routine eye exams are recommended, even in patients with great vision. People who have diabetes and are above 60 years are at risk for this condition. African-Americans and Mexican-Americans are considered to be at risk due to genetics. Family history, eye injury and increased eye pressure are also known to be predisposing factors for this condition.
It is important to reduce the pressure inside the eyes to prevent glaucoma. The only way to gauge your eye pressure is through your eye doctor. If your eye pressure is found to be elevated, you may be prescribed eye drops, which are know to reduce the risk by up to 50%. Laser treatment is also very successful.
This is among the most common eye conditions that are seen with diabetes. About 5 million Americans aged over 18 years are affected by it. The blood vessels are damaged due to this condition leading to blindness and vision loss. Blurring of vision and floaters are the most common symptoms.
Once a person develops diabetic retinopathy, laser treatments are used to preserve remaining vision. Although they reduce the risk of blindness, they cannot cure the disease. Keeping the blood sugar and blood pressure under control are vital to keep diabetic eye diseases under control. Since diabetes is a clear indication that a person can have diabetic retinopathy, it is imperative that such people have regular exams done.
Age-related macular degeneration
Age-related macular degeneration or AMD is a painless eye condition that eventually destroys the vision. There are two types of AMDs: dry and wet. Dry AMD is gradual and eventually impairs central vision. Wet AMD is sudden and causes serious eye damage. The symptoms of AMD include straight lines appearing wavy, blurred central vision, impaired distant vision, trouble viewing colors, and dark spots interfering with central vision.
AMD can be prevented or controlled by including fish and green leafy vegetables in the diet, maintaining a healthy body weight, exercising regularly, refraining from smoking, and keeping the blood pressure under control.