Tips for Coping With Vision Loss

Today there are a variety of normal, age-related vision issues which can be dealt with using practical solutions, such as installing extra lighting for reading recipes or tinkering with garage projects.

For most people in Northern Colorado somewhere around the age of 60 find that they need additional illumination for being able to do most tasks that are performed indoors or in darker conditions outdoors. This is because the eye’s pupil no longer opens as widely as it once did when they were younger to allow light to enter. Because less light is reaching your retina where vision processing occurs, what they see is no longer as sharp and clear.

To aid this vision problem, consider these extra steps:

  • The installation of task lighting in the kitchen under the cabinets or above stoves to help illuminate the darker corners of workspaces.
  • Making sure that you have enough lighting to brighten your work areas in places like your garage, sewing room, office or other areas where you need to see fine details.
  • Asking your employer to install additional lighting, if needed, at your work space.

Cataracts, are one of the most common vision ailments for people 60 years of age or older. They can be the source of cloudy or hazy vision. Cataracts are most often treated with surgery that removes the eye’s cloudy lens and replaces it with an artificial one.

What can you do about permanent vision loss?

Unfortunately, some people in Northern Colorado will experience some serious vision losses during their lifetime. This is due to blind spots caused by age-related eye diseases including glaucoma, advanced macular degeneration and diabetic retinopathy.

Today we have a wide selection of low vision devices which are available for people with permanent vision loss; to assist them with daily living tasks. These devices include:

  • Strong magnifying lenses with extra illumination, for reading and other near vision work.
  • Audio tapes, specially adapted computer or television screens, and telescopes.
  • Lens filters and shields to reduce glare.

Vision loss and the elderly

One very disturbing trend we have noted in recent years has been the increased tendency in our society to overlook or neglect the vision correction needs of our elderly citizens, including those living in nursing homes.

For example, there is research that has shown that almost one third of all elderly US citizens who are diagnosed with glaucoma go on to receive no medical treatment for this potentially blinding eye disease.

Here in Fort Collins, Loveland and Greeley we have seen first hand that the consequences of delaying vision correction or needed treatment, especially in elderly people, can be severe. Any uncorrected vision problems or eye diseases that go untreated can contribute to falls that seriously injure elderly people and greatly reduce their confidence in their ability to live independently.

If you have any older relatives or friends living alone or in a nursing home, please consider serving as their health care advocate. In this way you would be able to make sure they receive correct vision care and proper treatment of age-related eye diseases, to maximize and even extend their life.

For additional information or to schedule an appointment, please call 970-204-4020 or click on the link on the side of the page.

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