Macular Disease

 There are many types and causes for eye disease, but there are steps you can take to try to protect your eyes from the commonest form of vision loss which results from degenerative changes in the macular area.

  • Don't smoke, or if you do then STOP.
  • Protect your eyes from UV light – ideally from a young age by wearing hats or protective sunglasses.
  • Pay careful attention to your diet
  • Avoiding hypertension or taking medication to keep it controlled.
  • Discussing with your GP whether the advantages of taking regular doses of aspirin outway the disadvantages. (Aspirin can protect the cardiovascular system but can precipitate AMD)
  • Ask your Optometrist about the advisability of using an Amsler Chart.

Do you know someone with Macular Disease, if so do you know you can support them?

Your macular is a small area at the back of your eye that allows you  to see small details. As we get older there is an increasing risk of damage occuring in this area causing  Age-related Macular Dystrophy (AMD)

  • Whilst Macular Disease is a leading cause of sight loss, in most cases it does not cause blindness but it does cause  distress and makes life more fuzzy, complicated.
  • It may mean listening to audio books and talking newspapers rather than reading for yourself; and it may mean using taxis and public transport rather than driving yourself – but it does not have to be the end of independence.

In advanced AMD or macular disease the conscious mind may try to fill in any blank or distorted areas in the visual field by creating a special kind of annoying visual hallucination named after a Mr Charles Bonnet who first described it.

Because of the specialised nutritional demands of the macula area research suggests but cannot prove that dietary supplements may help protect your eye against AMD.

  • There many different tablets that are available. None can be guaranteed to stop AMD but they may be worth taking if you are concerned.Some contain just a few vitamins and minerals others are a complex blend. Some contain very high amounts of supplements others more moderate. Some are quite expensive others are cheaper
  • Your Optometrist will happily discuss what is available and may suggest a brand they are happy to supply but only you can decide whether to trust that you will be one of the lucky ones with a healthy robust macula, or whether to adjust your diet and your lifestyle or take supplements just in case.

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