By Barbara Glass
Age sneaks up on us. Physical changes are gradual until one day – presto! – we pass a mirror and wonder who that person is staring back at us. The image is a little fuzzy in low light. Could it be that my eyes are changing?
Eye muscles weaken over time. Reading a menu becomes a challenge as we adjust our arms farther and farther until the words come into focus. Eventually we run out of arms and buy “readers” at the drug store. If you’re lucky, progressive lenses and contacts solve the problem.
The good news is eyewear has become less expensive in recent years. It is now possible to get new glasses made quickly and inexpensively. Costco, Eyemart Express and Walmart Vision Center are all local. Online: ZenniOptical.com. Just ask your eye doctor for a copy of your prescription. The prices are so good, you can buy that snazzy red pair you’ve always wanted.
Problems may arise that are beyond normal muscle-weakening. The most frequent age-related eye conditions include glaucoma (peripheral vision loss),: macular degeneration (affects central vision), diabetic retinopathy (affects Diabetes 1 or 2 individuals) and cataracts (clouding of the eye lens). The transitions for each are sometimes sudden, but are most often gradual until they begin to interfere with daily activities. The good news is these conditions are treatable: if not completely fixable, then at least manageable – such that regular activity can be maintained. The key is to visit your eye doctor annually and keep your doctor informed of any changes in your eyesight.
Note that lifestyle choices affect eyesight: get enough sleep, adjust caffeine consumption, exercise 3-4 times weekly, moderate your diet. Good circulation improves eyesight as well as overall health. Meanwhile, be sure to manage other medical conditions you might have.
So, buy some flashy new glasses and see yourself in the mirror in a whole new light. This time, you’ll like what your see!