Although some people need glasses from a younger age, most of the eye problems begin after you cross the age of 40. Let’s talk about them.
This is a universal eye problem that everyone faces around the age of 40, plus or minus 2 years.
Presbyopia is a condition when a person experiences difficulty in reading small prints, threading a needle or doing near work. The vision for distance remains unaffected, patient’s have difficulty only in viewing near objects.
Presbyopia can be easily corrected with the help of reading glasses. If you are already using glasses for distance, an additional near power can be added to your glasses in the form of bifocal or progressive glasses. If you have never used glasses for distance, you will require only reading glasses for doing near work.
Cataract is another universal age related eye problem that everyone gets sooner or later.
You may experience symptoms of cataract such as blurred vision, glare, faded colors. An ophthalmologist will be able to diagnose cataract.
The treatment for cataract is surgery. During the surgery, your cataractous lens will be removed and an artificial lens will be implanted in your eyes, thus restoring clear vision.
I have written another blog in detail about the various types of cataract surgeries.
I will be discussing about the various types of artificial lenses available in one of my upcoming blogs.
3. Watering eyes
Although people of all ages may experience watering eyes, this problem can be particularly persistent in older people.
There are several causes of watering in older individuals such as eyelid disorders and blockage of the normal passage of tears.
This occurs as tissues around the eyes become loose due to age related changes. Depending upon the cause, watering of eyes can be treated by surgery or eye drops.
4. Diabetic retinopathy
Chronic diseases such as diabetes and high blood pressure (hypertension) are usually diagnosed in people more than 40 years of age.
Both diabetes and hypertension are known to affect the retina. In early stages the disease can be treated by controlling blood sugar and blood pressure, but if ignored, it can lead to permanent vision loss.
I have written a separate blog about diabetic eye disease. Do check it out!
Glaucoma is a condition in which the pressure inside the eye increases and presses on the nerve at the back of the eye leading to slow painless irreversible vision loss.
The vision loss in glaucoma occurs from the sides, and it is a painless condition therefore patients are often unaware till a later stage where the patient is left with only “tunnel vision”. Therefore, it is advisable that after the age of 40, you should get an eye checkup done once a year.
Also, glaucoma is known to run in families. So if you have a family history of glaucoma, it is recommended that you get an eye checkup done every year, irrespective of your age.
Glaucoma can be treated with eye drops and surgery and further vision loss can be prevented. However the loss that has occurred is irreversible.
6. Age related macular degeneration
Age-related macular degeneration is a condition of the retina in which the patient’s vision deteriorates.
It is usually found in older individuals about the age of 60 years due to age-related changes in the eye.
In certain types of age-related macular degeneration, some types of injections are given in the eye, that help to restore some of the lost vision.
You can prevent age related macular degeneration by having an anti-oxidant rich diet and a healthy lifestyle.
Fortunately, eye cancer is relatively rare.
If it develops, it can affect the eyelid and present as a small painless slow growing mass on the eyelid. Cancer of the eyelids is treated by surgical removal.
If cancer develops, inside the eye, it may affect vision. Most common type of cancer in adults is “melanoma” which is a cancer of the choroidal tissue inside the eye. In early stages, vision may be saved by radiotherapy and chemotherapy, but in late stages, the eye affected with cancer may have to be removed to save the patient’s life.
All of the above listed conditions are treatable if detected at an early stage and can prevent blindness.
All you need to do is, go for a yearly eye check up to your eye doctor to ensure that your eyes remain healthy and beautiful lifelong!
If you have any questions, feel free to drop a comment below, or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
I’ll meet you soon in my next blog. Till then take good care of your eyes and stay healthy.