There is a lot to think about as you grow older, and one of them is starting right back at you when you look in the mirror.
It’s true that your heart and mind get most of the attention with age, but it is important not to forget about your windows to the world: your eyes. Growing older can contribute to several changes that you’ll want to stay on top of.
Here are four common conditions to watch out for:
Cataracts: Cataracts are clouds that develop on the eye’s lens over many years. It’s possible they go unnoticed until it blocks your central line of sight and impairs vision.
Glaucoma: There are a couple of types of glaucoma that you should be paying attention to. One is called closed-angle glaucoma. Over time, the anterior chamber in each eye can become shallower. Those with small eyes and farsighted eyes may be at the biggest risk.
The narrowing can lead to a blockage that prevents fluid drainage, which can lead to a sudden increase in pressure that damages the optic nerve. Left untreated, it can cause blindness.
There is also open-angle glaucoma, which happens when pressure builds up gradually from different issues. Over time, it can damage the optic nerve, and if left untreated, it can result in blindness.
Age-Related Macular Degeneration: As the retina ages, it may become less sensitive to light because of cell loss, a reduced blood supply, or degeneration. The macula, in particular, can be prone to deterioration. If left untreated, it can take a person’s central vision, making it difficult to read, write, or drive a car. It is also the leading cause of blindness in people over 65.
Diabetic Retinopathy: Unmanaged diabetes can impact the eyes when the blood vessels that feed the retinas become damaged. Swelling or new blood vessels form that can lead to retinal bleeding or detachment. If left untreated, it can lead to blindness.
It can be difficult to manage these conditions, but there are some things you can do. One is to ensure you keep up with eye appointments to spot anything and have it treated as soon as possible. There is also data that suggests diet and exercise may help eye health.
Eating plenty of fruits and vegetables can help provide nutrients that contribute to eye health and help manage other conditions that pressure the eyes.
Activity can help maximize blood flow to help contribute to eye health, as well.