Clear Your Vision for National AMD/Low Vision Awareness Month

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Your vision is essential, as it allows you to see the beautiful world every day you open your eyes. But there is a condition affecting your eyes, and it is being brought to the forefront this February. National AMD/Low Vision Awareness Month brings to light an eye condition which is uncommon to people. By drawing attention to the eye issue, hopefully, more people know of it and help avoid it taking over their vision.

What is AMD/Low Vision?

The first lesson of National AMD/Low Vision Awareness Month is to understand the eye condition it is bringing awareness.

AMD/low vision is short for age-related macular degeneration and primarily affects your macula part of your retina. Due to the location on the eye, you lose your central sight and seeing fine details. It is considered the leading cause of vision in individuals over the age of 50.

There are two types of AMD:

  • Wet AMD: a less common form but with more severe consequences, Wet AMD happens when abnormal blood vessels appear to grow under the retina. The blood vessels sometimes cause leakage and scarring of the macula.
  • Dry AMD: This is the type 80% of sufferers have, and occurs when parts of the macula get thinner due to age. Tiny clumps of a protein called drusen grow in the area, and you slowly begin losing your central vision.

How to Protect Your Eyesight this National AMD/Low Vision Awareness Month

If you have an elderly loved one over the age of 50 and you’re worried about their eye vision, there could be adult daycare services on how to help with AMD.

Know the chances of developing the eye condition

The following are several reasons likely for you to develop age-related macular degeneration:

  • Have a family history of the eye condition
  • Are over the age of 50
  • Smoke cigarettes
  • Are of Caucasian descent
  • Eat a diet high in saturated fats, such as butter, cheese, and meat
  • Having heart disease

If you have someone close to you who have several of these risk factors, it is crucial they visit an ophthalmologist to do proper AMD testing.

Have the Amsler grid handy

One way to test your chances of developing AMD/Low Vision is to have an Amsler grid somewhere in your home. The Amsler grid is a chart with lines and a dot in the center of it and helps monitor changes in your central eye vision. Place the grid somewhere in your room or kitchen and check daily for any changes. It can help you notice the first signs of AMD and allow you to take care of it before it develops further.

Visit Your Eye Doctor Yearly for More Help

Don’t allow your central vision to disappear because of AMD. Planning a yearly visit to your optometrist keeps your eyes checked for any changes occurring to them. Knowing what is happening to your vision helps keep it from disappearing.