If you’ve got Parkinson’s disease, you might not spend much time thinking about the health of your eyes.
But maybe you should be.
A new study is showing that people with Parkinson’s often suffer from eye problems that can interfere with daily life and increase the risk of falls. Strong vision is essential in compensating for impaired movement caused by Parkinson’s.
The study followed 1,098 people, at an average age of 70, for seven years. Of the patients, 848 had Parkinson’s and the remaining 150 did not. Eighty-two percent of those with Parkinson’s reported trouble like blurry vision, dry eyes, depth perception, and adjusting to light changes. Forty-eight percent of the healthy population reported the same problems.
Those results show us two things: the first is that people with Parkinson’s are very likely to experience trouble with their eyes. But they also show how common eye troubles are, overall. And although Parkinson’s can drastically impair movement, the average 70-year old isn’t necessarily spry.
Whether or not you have Parkinson’s, it is worthwhile to practice good eye health. A diet rich in antioxidants, particularly carotenoids, can help, as can maintaining a healthy weight, blood pressure, and blood sugar levels.
Another aspect of eye health people often overlook are quality glasses. It can be easy to skimp of good glasses. Good ones, after all, can be rather expensive. But making sure you’re wearing glasses with UV-treated frames can go a long way in protecting your vision.
This is true for both sunglasses and daily glasses. When you elect to buy cheap sunglasses, like the ones sold in drugstores or fast-fashion retailers, you aren’t giving your eyes the protection they need. UV rays can lead to significant eye damage.
When buying your regular glasses, ensure the lenses you order have UV protection. In most cases, they will.
Whether you’re trying to limit the danger of a condition like Parkinson’s or maintain good vision later in age, taking care of your eyes can play a big role. Strong vision can help you prevent falls and promote a higher quality of life.