Normal vision and vision shown with macular degeneration
Vision with Macular Degeneration Open the pop-up dialog box
Dry macular degeneration is a common eye condition in people over the age of 50. It causes blurred or impaired central vision due to thinning of the macula (MAK-u-luh). The macula is the part of the retina responsible for clear vision in your direct line of sight.
Dry macular degeneration can develop in one or both eyes first and then affect both eyes. Over time, your eyesight can deteriorate and affect your ability to do things like reading, driving, and recognizing faces. But that doesn’t mean you will lose all eyes. Vision loss is usually central and people retain their peripheral vision. Some people have minor central vision loss while others can experience more severe loss.
Dry macular degeneration symptoms usually develop gradually and without pain. They can include:
Visual distortions such as B. Straight lines that appear to be curved
Reduced central vision in one or both eyes
The need for brighter light when reading or working close-up
Increased difficulty in adapting to low light conditions, e.g. B. when entering a dimly lit restaurant
Increased blurring of printed words
Decrease in the intensity or brightness of the colors
Difficulty recognizing faces
Parts of the inner eye
Parts of the eye open popup dialog
Nobody knows exactly what causes dry macular degeneration. However, research shows that it can be influenced by a combination of hereditary and environmental factors such as smoking, obesity, and diet.
The condition develops as the eye ages. Dry macular degeneration affects the macula – an area of the retina that is responsible for clear vision in your direct line of sight. Over time, the tissues in your macula can thin and lose cells that are responsible for vision.
Factors that can increase your risk of macular degeneration include:
Age. This disease is more common in people over the age of 60.
Family and inheritance history. This disease has a hereditary component. Researchers have identified several genes that are related to the development of the disease.
Run. Macular degeneration is more common in Caucasians.
Smoke. Smoking cigarettes or regular exposure to smoke greatly increases the risk of macular degeneration.
Obesity. Research has shown that obesity can increase the likelihood of early or intermediate macular degeneration, which leads to the most severe form of the disease.
People whose dry macular degeneration has progressed to central vision loss are at greater risk of depression and social isolation. With profound vision loss, people may see visual hallucinations (Charles Bonnet syndrome). Dry macular degeneration can lead to wet macular degeneration, which, if left untreated, can lead to rapid vision loss.
It is important to have routine eye exams to identify the first signs of macular degeneration. The following steps can help reduce your risk of dry macular degeneration:
Manage your other illnesses. For example, if you have cardiovascular disease or high blood pressure, take your medication and follow your doctor’s instructions to control the disease.
Do not smoke. Smokers are more likely to develop macular degeneration than non-smokers. Ask your doctor to help you quit smoking.
Maintain a healthy weight and exercise regularly. If you need to lose weight, reduce the number of calories you eat and increase the amount of exercise you do each day.