In a lifetime, your eyes will bring you millions of images, memories and experiences. Considering the fact that the eyes are physiologically fragile, with only a blinking eyelid to protect them, it’s remarkable what they are able to achieve, and how resilient they are.
There is one natural force that will succeed in impacting your eyes: time. As we age, the eyes change in ways that affect the clarity of vision, and sometimes limit our ability to enjoy life fully. Below, experienced Brisbane ophthalmologist Joshua Hann discusses some of the challenges you may face as your eye matures.
In your 40s, you are likely to experience presbyopia, the condition that makes a trip to the chemist’s reading-glass carousel a middle-age rite of passage for many. Presbyopia becomes obvious when a person begins holding books and magazines further away to allow the eyes to focus on fine print at greater distances. Eventually everyone runs out of arm length, and must accept that vision correction is necessary for focusing at close distances. Reading glasses and bifocals are all options to restore clarity to your near vision.
While presbyopia is caused by progressive loss of lens flexibility, cataracts occur when the lens becomes cloudy, obscuring the image it projects on the retina. This process can begin in a person’s 60s, and becomes more common with each passing year. The clouding effect progresses slowly, and its only recognisable symptom is the gradual blurring of vision. As common as this condition is, the solution is just as routine: Millions of cataract surgeries are performed each year. In this convenient procedure, the clouded lens is removed and replaced with a lens implant that will remain clear for life.
Known as the silent thief of sight, this dangerous condition can strike at any age, but your risk increases as you grow older. Glaucoma develops when excess pressure within the eye begins to damage the optic nerve, your eye’s visual lifeline to the brain. If left untreated, glaucoma will lead to partial or total loss of vision.
There are a number of options available to slow the progression of glaucoma, including eye drops, medications and surgery, but the most important way to treat the disease is to identify it early. An annual eye exam by an experienced ophthalmologist will always include a check for signs of glaucoma and other conditions which have the potential to imperil your vision, such as macular degeneration.
If you would like to learn more about ways to maintain healthy eyes and preserve your vision for a lifetime, schedule a personal consultation with trusted Brisbane ophthalmologist Dr. Joshua Hann by contacting Eastside Eye Specialist Care today.