Why Eye exams are specially important for senior patients
If you’re over sixty, you don’t need anybody to tell you that you’re body is undergoing a great number of changes. Still, many seniors in Scarborough, Ontario seem to neglect their eyes, even though many eye conditions are age related. To this end, what we want to do here is explain some of the eye issues that are of particular concern to seniors. At any rate, part of taking care of one’s self as a senior involves having regular eye examinations.
Some of the eye conditions that affect seniors in particular are as follows:
• FLOATING PARTICLES
• DRY EYES/EXCESSIVE TEARING
This condition is very common among people over 40. It’s characterized by a difficulty focusing on objects that are in close proximity which is caused by the clear lens losing its elasticity. Most people realize that something’s off when they’re reading the newspaper and they find that they have to hold it at an arm’s length in order to read it clearly.
Constantly having to make these sorts of adjustments is distressing, and can cause problems such as headaches and tired and sore eyes. However, this condition is easily fixed with the right prescription glasses (bifocals are another popular option) and if you find out that this is the case for you, you wouldn’t be the first senior in Scarborough who’s never had to wear glasses before only to find that in their later years they do!
Lots of seniors find that from time to time they have black spots in their vision that seem to move in the direction of their gaze. These floating black spots also seem to be more easily visible when looking at a white background, a piece of blank paper, or a clear sky. There are many causes for these spots appearing in the vitreous humor (the liquid center of the eye) and usually it’s nothing too serious. However, if you experience these floating particles very frequently -and especially if they are at times accompanied by what appear to be glints of light- it’s time to see your eye doctor. At any rate, if you experience floating particles in your vision it’s something that you should mention to your optometrist right away.
DRY EYES/EXCESSIVE TEARING
Lots of seniors suffer from dry eyes, and a common complaint is the sensation of having a foreign object “stuck” in the eye. It’s quite uncomfortable, and this condition is exacerbated during the dry months that we experience in Scarborough and throughout Ontario.
At the other end of the spectrum, excessive tearing ought to be taken seriously as it is often an indication of irritation, infection, or a problem with the tear ducts.
If you have trouble with either of these conditions, it’s time for an eye examination; your eye care professional will easily be able to determine what the adequate course of treatment should be.
Seniors are particularly susceptible to developing cataracts. So much so, in fact, that the medical term for the most common type is actually “age-related cataracts”. They are the leading cause ofn blindness for seniors. If you find that your vision is cloudy and you have trouble seeing objects clearly, an eye examination should be your top priority. Cataracts can only be treated with a surgical intervention, but thankfully some of the best doctors are located right here in Scarborough, Ontario.
Glaucoma is another leading cause of vision loss among seniors. It’s usually characterized by high pressure in the eye that damages the optic nerve. If the signs and symptoms are ignored, the end result could very well be irreversible blindness.
Our goal here is not to be alarmist, but the truth is that seniors more than any other segment of the population need to be more vigilant when it comes to taking care of their eyes. These and other conditions are serious, but are easily treated. The first step to treatment is an eye examination. No one should have what should be one of the most interesting stages of their life aggrieved by preventable vision loss.