| Understanding the causes of low vision and taking precautions as you age |
EYESIGHT is a precious thing, and unfortunately there are many threats to optimal optical health. One common eye problem is low vision, and it affects seniors the most. Low vision, in its simplest terms, is any vision loss that interferes with daily activities and cannot be corrected with aids such as glasses or contacts, medication, or surgery. Understanding the causes of low vision and taking preemptive measures is the best defense to ensure that your vision lasts a lifetime. Take our quiz to test your insight on low vision and the particular risks to seniors!
1. True or False? Low vision is the same as legal blindness.
2. Low vision is also referred to as which of the following?
A) Legal Blindness
B) Visual Impairment
C) Bad Sight
D) Ocular Disability
3. Low vision can include which of the following?
A) Blurriness, distortion, or blind spots
B) Narrowing of peripheral vision
C) Sensitivity to glare and/or light
D) Loss of contrast or color perception
E) All of the Above
4. Approximately ___________ Americans suffer from low vision.
A) 14 million
B) 5 million
C) 1 million
D) 10 million
5. True or False? Though irreversible vision loss is most common in those over 65 years old, losing vision is not just a part of getting older.
6. Low vision is most often caused by which of the following diseases and health conditions?
C) Age-Related Macular Degeneration
D) Diabetic Retinopathy
E) All of the Above
7. What resource is the best option in order to tell the differences between the aging eye and eye diseases that cause low vision?
B) The Internet
C) An eye care professional
D) A family doctor
8. True or False? Once you develop low vision, there is nothing further that can be done for your eyesight.
9. Fill in the Blanks: The ________ your vision problem is diagnosed, the ________ your chances of getting successful treatment and keeping your remaining vision.
A) Later; Worse
B) Sooner; Worse
C) Later; Better
D) Sooner; Better
10. How often should people over 60 have an eye exam through dilated pupils?
A) Once a year
B) Once a month
C) Once every three years
D) Only once vision problems start
1. False. Low vision is numerically defined as a visual acuity of 20/70 or worse in the best eye; that means that a person with 20/70 vision can see at 20 feet what someone with 20/20 vision can see at 70 feet. Legal blindness, though similar, is more severe with a visual acuity of 20/200 or worse.
2. B) Visual Impairment.
3. E) All of the Above. Low vision includes any visual impairment that cannot be corrected with aids, medicine or surgery.
4. A) 14 million. According to lowvision.preventblindness.org/, an estimated 14 million people in the U.S. alone suffer from low vision.
5. True. While seniors are most afflicted by low vision, the health conditions and diseases leading to impaired vision are not a normal or inevitable part of the aging process.
6. E) All of the Above. Low vision has many causes, but age-related macular degeneration, diabetic retinopathy, cataracts, and glaucoma are the most common.
7. C) An eye-care professional. A specialist like an optometrist or ophthalmologist is the best resource for diagnosing and treating low vision.
8. False. While your eyesight likely cannot be restored to 100 percent functionality, a vision specialist can prescribe and train you to use visual devices, rehabilitation programs, and different technologies to help you to adapt to the vision impairment.
9. D) Sooner; Better. According to the National Institutes of Health, Senior Health, early diagnosis of vision problems is of the utmost importance.
10. A) Once a year. Dilated eye exams should be part of everyone’s routine health care, but especially for seniors.
CENTRAL FLORIDA HEALTH NEWS staff report