When we think about maintaining our health when aging, we often think about monitoring blood pressure, cholesterol, bone health and memory. But taking care of our eyes and vision is just as important.
There are several health factors that make caring for your eyes and vision particularly important as you age. So take some time during Healthy Aging Month to address eye and vision health and make caring for your eyes part of your regular health routine.
Vision and Safety
Eye sight can naturally decrease as you age, even if you’ve had perfect vision your entire life. Low level vision changes can leave you with headaches after common tasks like reading, but not addressing your changing eyesight can have greater consequences.
Poor eye sight can lead to accidents or falls in the home and may affect your ability to safely drive. As you age, it’s particularly important to have your eyes examined at least once a year for vision changes and general eye health. If you notice your eyesight changing, make an appointment right away. Even people who have worn glasses for years can experience a prescription change or my need bifocals or trifocals.
Not only can vision begin failing with age, but age is often a factor in many common eye diseases, such as glaucoma, cataracts and macular degeneration. In fact, one in six Americans over the age 65 has a vision impairment that cannot be corrected with glasses or contact lenses. This is often due to a vision-altering eye disease. One study found that the risk of severe eye health issues increases significantly in patients over the age of 65. Many of these issues can lead to partial or complete blindness if not treated, so it’s important to not ignore the issue.
Luckily, many major eye diseases that become more common with age are now easily treatable with medication or outpatient procedures. ICON Eyecare offers expert treatment for glaucoma, cataracts and macular degeneration, as well as diabetic retinopathy — which can also become more of a problem with age.
Monitor for Additional Health Issues
Monitoring eye and vision health can also help doctors easily detect early signs of other, non-eye related health issues.
Your eyes are one the easiest place to monitor your veins. Modern technology enables optometrists and ophthalmologists to take a detailed image of the inside of your eye, revealing the veins in your eye and giving them a good window into your overall health.
Routine eye exams could help your eye doctor detect signs of:
- Cardiovascular disease
- Autoimmune disorders
- High cholesterol
- Multiple Sclerosis
Some new studies even indicate that specialized eye exams could be used to detect early signs of Alzheimer’s, though more research is needed in this field.
Clearly, monitoring and maintaining eye health while aging is about a lot more than just getting reading glasses. Practicing good eye health can help you maintain your overall health and ensure you’ll be able to see comfortably for years to come. Make an appointment with your eye doctor today and start making a commitment to your eye health during Healthy Aging Month.
About ICON Eyecare
ICON Eyecare is a leading surgical and medical eye care provider based out of Denver, CO. Since 1999, ICON has been building a Center of Ophthalmology Excellence empowered by an expert team of board certified physician specialists, the most advanced laser technology and a culture of quality and extraordinary patient care. In coordination with referring optometrists and physicians, ICON Eyecare specializes in treating patients with cataracts, advanced forms of glaucoma and other age and disease related conditions, while providing innovative options for patients seeking LASIK and cosmetic eye procedures. With 14 patient care centers located in Colorado and Texas, ICON Eyecare is expanding within the broader western U.S. region. For more information, please call (720) 524-1001, or visit iconeyecare.com.