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Conditions the Elderly Should Check for at Annual Eye Exams

By Nick Paciello, 9:00 am on

Seniors receiving Henderson senior home care should get their eyes examined regularly not only because they need to maintain their eye health, but also because these exams can help identify additional conditions. If left untreated, these 5 conditions can have a negative impact on your aging loved one’s sight and overall health.

1. High Blood Pressure 

Undiagnosed hypertension can damage your loved one’s heart, kidneys, and the blood vessels in the back of his or her eyes. High blood pressure can also cause the retina’s blood vessels to narrow and the optic nerve to swell. A routine eye exam can aid in diagnosing hypertensive retinopathy in its beginning stages and help boost your loved one’s overall health.

2. Diabetic Retinopathy 

Diabetic retinopathy is an eye disease that often has no early warning signs. This disease develops when blood vessels in the retina change, causing them to swell and leak. Seniors whose regular eye exams include eye dilation can be checked for this disease and possibly save their sight.

3. Glaucoma

Glaucoma is the accumulation of pressure inside the eye. It can cause your loved one to lose peripheral vision, damage the optic nerve, or even lead to blindness. A yearly eye exam is crucial for diagnosing glaucoma in the beginning stages and preventing loss of sight. Glaucoma is difficult to self-diagnose because there are no warning signs or pain to let a senior know something isn’t right.

4. Cognitive Decline 

Scientists from the University of California, San Francisco found there could be a connection between slightly enlarged blood vessels in the retina and cognitive deterioration in women. The researchers believe a slight case of retinopathy, which can be diagnosed during a regular eye exam, may help detect the beginning stages of vascular changes in the brain. Early diagnosis and treatment may be the key to delaying cognitive impairment.

5. Cataracts

Cataracts are almost unavoidable for the elderly. They develop as a person ages and the lens of their eyes become less flexible. Seniors with cataracts may experience symptoms such as cloudy or blurred vision and sensitivity to light. If cataracts are detected early enough through an eye exam, an updated prescription for eyewear may temporarily delay having outpatient surgery for the condition.

 

Learn more about maintaining optimal health in the golden years from the knowledgeable staff at Henderson Home Care Assistance. Our expertly trained caregivers can provide transportation to and from medical appointments, assist with exercise, and help with a wide array of other important tasks. For more information on the respite and 24-hour care Henderson, NV, seniors and their families can count on, call one of our qualified Care Managers today at (702) 527-7723.