There are many types of vision loss that occur commonly in the elderly. Some of the types are cataracts, glaucoma, age-related macular degeneration, diabetic retinopathy, and age-related vision loss. Luckily, the National Institute on Aging and other professional resources have some tips to prevent loss of vision in the elderly. As a family caregiver, you can share these vision loss prevention tips with your elderly loved one. Then, you and in-home care providers can help remind your elderly loved one to utilize these tips.
The number one tip to prevent loss of vision in the elderly years is sun protection. It is very important that senior citizens wear hats and sunglasses when outside. These two things can help to protect their eyes from ultraviolet rays. Studies show that people who protect their eyes from the sun keep their vision intact for much longer than those who don’t. It should also be noted that the rays from the sun can speed up the formation of cataracts and can be a factor in macular degeneration development, too.
Unfortunately, there are many senior citizens who struggle with diabetes. If this is the case for your elderly loved one, it may be a good idea for you and their in-home care providers to remind them to take their medications and see their doctor regularly. If diabetes gets out of hand, it can lead to blood sugar issues, which can affect what was healthy vision.
Managing Blood Pressure
Does your elderly loved one have high blood pressure? If so, it doesn’t only increase the risk of strokes and heart disease. In fact, it can affect vision as people age, too. The longer someone has high blood pressure, the more damage it can do to blood vessels. This affects vision because there are blood vessels in and around the eyes that can be damaged. The higher the blood pressure is, the worse and quicker vision loss can happen.
Eating Eye-Healthy Foods
Another tip for preventing loss of vision for senior citizens is to eat eye-healthy foods. These are foods that are filled with minerals, antioxidants, and nutrients. Studies have shown that these types of foods help with the prevention of macular degeneration and general vision loss. Some of the eye-healthy foods that you or home care providers should encourage your elderly loved one to eat include:
- Yellow and orange vegetables
- Leafy green vegetables
All these foods should be eaten regularly. You and in-home care providers can even work with your elderly loved one to create a meal plan that includes a lot of different recipes that mix in these foods. Remember, the more regularly your elderly loved one sticks to this type of diet, the better it will be for their eyes and overall health.
These are some of the top tips to prevent loss of vision in the elderly. As a family caregiver, it is important to help your elderly loved one keep their vision healthy along with improving overall health, too. You and the in-home care providers should start encouraging your elderly loved one to follow through with these tips beginning today.