Aging and Your Eyes

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Age can bring changes that affect eyesight and it’s more than just minor day-to-day inconveniences. Here’s a look at some common eye problems and when you or your loved one should seek help.

This article, from the National Institute on Aging, part of NIH, covers the following information:

  • How Can You Protect Your Eyesight?
  • Common Eye Problems
  • Tips for Healthy Eyes
  • Eye Diseases and Disorders
  • What Is Low Vision?

Are you holding the newspaper farther away from your eyes than you used to? Join the crowd—age can bring changes that affect your eyesight. Some changes are more serious than others, but for many problems, there are things you can do to protect your vision. The key is to have regular eye exams so you can spot problems early.
How Can You Protect Your Eyesight?Older man getting an eye exam

Have your eyes checked regularly by an eye care professional—either an ophthalmologist or optometrist. People over age 60 should have dilated eye exams yearly. During this exam, the eye care professional will put drops in your eyes to widen (dilate) your pupils so that he or she can look at the back of each eye. This is the only way to find some common eye diseases that have no early signs or symptoms. If you wear glasses or contact lenses, your prescription should be checked, too. See your doctor regularly to check for diseases like diabetes and high blood pressure. These diseases can cause eye problems if not controlled or treated.

See an eye care professional right away if you:

  • Suddenly cannot see or everything looks blurry
  • See flashes of light
  • Have eye pain
  • Experience double vision
  • Have redness or swelling of your eye or eyelid