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August is National Eye Exam Month. Have you had your eyes checked lately?

Vision Problems Affect Over 20 Million People In This Country

Vision loss in the U.S. is rapidly becoming a crisis of epidemic proportions since large numbers of older persons are experiencing age related vision loss from such conditions as macular degeneration, diabetic retinopathy, glaucoma, and cataracts (afb.org/seniorsite/understandingvisionloss). People with vision loss are twice as likely to fall and twice as likely to break a hip when they fall. Loss of vision affects all areas of every day life such as driving, reading, and even taking prescriptions.

 

Signs of Vision Loss

Exhibiting several, or all, of the following behaviors may be indicative of vision loss. Be sure to check with a doctor or eye care professional if you or a loved one shows any of these signs.
 

Moving Around
• Constantly bumping into objects
• Having difficulty walking on irregular or bumpy surfaces
• Stepping hesitantly
• Going up and down stairs slowly and cautiously
• Shuffling feet
• Brushing against walls while walking
• Missing objects by under-reaching or over-reaching
 

Everyday Activities
• Discontinuing or doing certain activities differently such as reading, watching television, driving, walking, or engaging in hobbies
• Squinting or tilting the head to the side to focus on an object
• Having difficulty identifying faces or objects
• Having trouble locating personal objects even in a familiar environment
• Reaching out for objects in an uncertain manner
• Experiencing trouble identifying colors
• Selecting clothing in unusual combinations of colors or patterns
 

Eating and Drinking
• Having problems getting food onto a fork
• Having difficulty cutting food or serving from a serving dish
• Spilling food off the plate while eating
• Pouring liquids over the top of a cup or drinking glass
• Knocking over glasses while reaching across the table for another item
 

Reading and Writing
• Ceasing to read mail, newspapers, or books
• Holding reading material very close to the face or at an angle
• Writing less clearly and having trouble writing on a line
• Finding lighting that was previously sufficient inadequate for reading and other activities

By marla  |  Jul 23, 2009
Categories: Elder Care