How do you keep your eyes healthy as you age?

AMD (Age-related macular degeneration)  is a condition that affects the macula, the part of the retina with the greatest density of photoreceptor cells. Risk factors are age and genetic predisposition, but we can manage our genetic make-up to avoid harming our eyes and do what is good for them. 

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Photoreceptor cells cluster together in the center of the retina. This is known as the macula, or “point of sharpest vision.” Those who have had their macula damaged can no longer read or recognize faces, but they can usually still orient themselves in space.

Avoid smoking, and drink only occasionally

Smoking hurts blood vessels and can make the retina swell up. It raises the risk of AMD by a factor of two to four, making it one of the most important risk factors that you can control. Alcohol is bad for your cells and nerves, so you shouldn’t drink too much of it. A lot of cancers are also less likely to happen if you don’t drink.

Pay attention to a healthy diet.

Vegetables, fruit, whole-grain foods, nuts, seeds with healthy vegetable oils, fish once in a while, and only a small amount of meat are all part of the Mediterranean diet. This diet has the vitamins, minerals, trace elements, and unsaturated fatty acids that the eyes need. In studies, some people who took a mix of vitamins, zinc, and copper were able to slow down the progression of AMD. Before you take it, talk to your eye doctor about the benefits and any possible side effects.

Make sure you get enough exercise

An early form of AMD is less likely to happen if you work out. A recent overview study that looked at how frequently AMD occurs in active and inactive people demonstrated this. The World Health Organization (WHO) says that you should do moderate aerobic exercise for at least 150 minutes per week. Also, 20 minutes a day is seen as the minimum for AMD by experts. Motto: More is more.

Watch your weight, blood pressure, and other vital signs.

High blood sugar, high blood pressure, and high levels of fat in the blood can all hurt the blood vessels and cut off blood flow to the retina. When a person is overweight, inflammatory chemicals from the adipose tissue get into the bloodstream and also the retina, which is a very sensitive part of the eye. Losing weight is a good way to protect not only your eyes but also the rest of your body.

Protect yourself from too much sun

Some studies show that UV radiation can hurt the lens and maybe even the retina. But the results aren’t agreed upon. Sunglasses with large lenses and wide arms that have a UV filter (“UV400”) protect against light coming in.

Go to the ophthalmologist regularly

Ophthalmologists recommend that people over 60 have their eyes checked every three years. In the event of changes and, for example, diabetes, also at shorter intervals.

Do the Amsler test regularly

The Amsler test is a grid of straight lines. If they are distorted or blurred, this can indicate changes in the retina, such as fluid accumulation (edema).

Adhere to the therapy recommendations.

When fluid builds up in the retina, which is a sign of “wet” AMD, an ophthalmologist can use medicine to treat the affected area. He decides how often and how far apart these steps need to be taken.

Stay calm

It is not helpful to think that AMD could cause blindness because stress damages the blood vessels and, in turn, the blood supply to the eyes. Most of the time, residual vision lasts for a long time. With special tools to help them see and read, many people with this condition can stay on their own for a long time.



4th Professional Medical Student. Karachi Medical and Dental College.

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