Macular Degeneration — wet macular degeneration

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Symptoms of Wet Macular Degeneration

Symptoms of Wet Macular Degeneration 0

Symptoms of Wet Macular Degeneration


Symptoms of degrading vision often build slowly and go unnoticed for a long period of  time until they reach a degree of severity that may no longer be ignored. One may notice that he or she now needs glasses to read the text of a favorite book or magazine. Headaches grow more frequent - the result of constantly strained eye muscles. Once bright and vibrant colors may even take on more dull and muted hues.

While many conditions may result in impaired vision, wet macular degeneration is one of the most common culprits. According to AMD.org, when one is afflicted with this form of macular degeneration the membrane beneath the retina thickens and eventually breaks, disrupting the supply of critical oxygen to the macula. In response to this assault, the body forms new, abnormal blood vessels which grow up from beneath the retina toward the macula. These new blood vessels are quite delicate and are prone to leaking, which leads to scarring of the macula. This causes damage to both the retina and macula and often results in a rapid degradation of vision that, once lost, cannot be restored.

As is often the case with illness, catching wet macular degeneration early is key so one may take action to minimize its negative effects. While the condition is fairly serious, there exist several treatment options that can be highly effective if applied early. Following are a few telltale signs of wet macular degeneration.

  • Slightly blurred vision
  • Visual distortions in which straight lines may appear curved or crooked
  • Blind spots that most often appear in the middle of the visual field and that grow larger if left untreated
  • Hallucinations that involve seeing objects, animals, or people that aren’t actually present

Along with watching for symptoms, it is also important to know the risk factors for wet macular degeneration. Taking steps to reduce these risk factors is a critical step to take along the path of risk reduction. Additional risk factors for developing this condition include:

AMD Macular Degeneration   AMD Macular Degeneration

Knowledge is power. With an increased awareness of both symptoms and risk factors, one can detect and guard against the development of wet macular degeneration before it has a chance to threaten his or her vision. Additionally, eliminating the additional risk factors for this condition will not only help to protect one’s vision, it will also contribute to an overall greater level of health and vitality.


One Love,

Dr. Jenna Zigler, Eye Love

Dr. Jenna Zigler


Sources:

http://www.amd.org/what-is-macular-degeneration/wet-amd/

http://www.medicinenet.com/macular_degeneration/article.htm

http://www.nhs.uk/Conditions/Macular-degeneration/Pages/Symptoms.aspx

How Fast Does Macular Degeneration Progress?

How Fast Does Macular Degeneration Progress? 2

How Fast Does Macular Degeneration Progress?

How Fast Does Macular Degeneration Progress?

Macular Degeneration is a condition which results in deterioration of the center part of the retina. The retina is located in the inside of the back layer of the eye and sends signals to the optic nerve, which the brain translates into an image. This allows us to interpret what we see. The macula is the center of vision that allows us to see color, focus for reading, and see fine details like the expressions on people’s faces.

What Is the Difference Between Wet and Dry Macular Degeneration?

Wet macular degeneration happens when there are abnormal blood vessels that have grown under both the macula and retina. When the abnormal vessels bleed and leak it causes the macula to lift up or bulge. When the macula is lifted up it destroys central vision. Wet macular degeneration is the less common of the two forms.

Dry macular degeneration does not have any of the leakage of serum or blood displayed in the wet type, but instead it has small yellow deposits that form under the macula. This results in the area thinning and drying, causing the macula to lose its ability to function.

How Fast Does Macular Degeneration Progress?

People generally ask how fast this disease progresses as one of their first questions. It’s a question that is hard to answer. Depending when and how far the disease has progressed differs from patient to patient. Wet macular degeneration will progress faster than dry macular degeneration. About 85-90% of those diagnosed have the dry kind.

It is not uncommon to have both types in the later stages and the disease may be found in only one eye. Macular degeneration is not a curable disease at this time, but it can be slowed down if caught early.

Ways to Slow or Prevent Macular Degeneration

According to the American Macular Degeneration Foundation (AMDF), there are some lifestyle choices that can help delay or avoid this disease. Smoking is one of the higher risk factors. Also eating a healthy diet with lots of fruits and veggies, especially dark leafy vegetables such as uncooked spinach, kale,and collard greens helps to stave off AMD. Exercise on a regular basis, walking up to 2 miles a day three times a week or something equivalent will help. And perhaps one of the most important things to do is regularly see your eye specialist!


One Love,

Dr. Travis Zigler, Eye Love

Dr. Travis Zigler

Other Macular Degeneration articles by Dr. Zigler: Managing Macular Degeneration: Diet and LifestyleHow Fast Does Macular Degeneration Progress?Will I Go Blind From Macular Degeneration?

We would love for you to join our Macular Degeneration Support Community on Facebook.

Ways To Prevent Macular Degeneration Naturally

Ways To Prevent Macular Degeneration Naturally 0

Ways To Prevent Macular Degeneration Naturally

The macula is in the center part of the retina and in the back part of the eye, which records how we see. The macula then sends this information from the retina to the brain to interpret the images. Macular degeneration is the breaking down of the macula causing problems with the center point of vision.

Are there ways to prevent macular degeneration naturally?

Ways To Prevent Macular Degeneration Naturally

There are many ways to lessen your chances of developing this disease. First are some of the common sense healthy lifestyle choices we should all make:  Drink plenty of water and don’t smoke.  Smokers are four times more likely to develop age-related macular degeneration (AMD) than non-smokers! Studies done at the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary also found that men who eat fish at least twice a week are 45% less likely to develop macular degeneration. Omega-3s for the win!

Eat a diet rich in dark leafy vegetables such as kale, raw spinach, and collard greens to make sure you get lots of antioxidants. Uncooked spinach is found to be the most effective of the three. It is recommended you eat fruits and nuts daily, and talk to your eye specialist or medical doctor about multivitamins and multimineral supplements. Don’t forget to wear sunglasses that block UV rays and limit your blue light exposure from smartphones and electronic screens. One way to limit the blue light exposure is to look up from your phone more often and for longer periods. You can also find blue-blocking lenses that work well for hours of computer work.

Exercise and Maintain a Healthy Weight

Maintaining a healthy weight and exercising are also good for your eyes. People who exercise on a regular basis -- three or more times a week, like walking two miles a day, are 70% less likely to develop age-related macular degeneration. Eating fruits and veggies is important and also reduces the refined carbs you eat. Refined carbs are foods such as white bread, pretzels, potatoes, and donuts. Instead, try eating more low-glycemic foods such as multigrain or whole wheat breads.

Blood Pressure and Cholesterol

Cholesterol is that fatty material that builds up in blood vessels and makes it harder for the blood to flow freely. Cholesterol that builds up can make it harder for your eyes to maintain the health they deserve, creating added pressure on the delicate veins in the eyes. Hypertension must also be controlled to prevent macular changes from worsening.

Don’t Forget to Get Your Eyes Checked

Everyone should get an eye exam, but as you age this becomes more essential. It is recommended that between the ages of 40 to 60 you have an eye exam every two years. After age 60, eye exams should be done yearly. Talk to your eye doctor and see what supplements are recommended for your eye health!


One Love,

Dr. Jenna Zigler, Eye Love

Dr. Jenna Zigler

Other Macular Degeneration articles by Dr. Zigler: Managing Macular Degeneration: Diet and LifestyleHow Fast Does Macular Degeneration Progress?Will I Go Blind From Macular Degeneration?

We would love for you to join our Macular Degeneration Support Community on Facebook.

 

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