A Clearer View

Latest treatment options and news about cataracts, dry eye syndrome and other eye care topics.

Slowing the Progress of Age-Related Macular Degeneration

by Damion Wasylow 13 February 2018 12:28 PM

woman in glasses squinting to see phone screen
Age-related macular degeneration (ARMD) slowly robs patients of their vision over time, eventually leading to blindness. In fact, ARMD is the leading cause of blindness in people 55 and over in developed countries, affecting more than 10 million people in the United States alone. 

Sadly, there is no cure for age-related macular degeneration, but you can take steps to slow the progress of ARMD, if you recognize the warning signs and are diagnosed early.

Quit Smoking

As if you needed one more reason to quit, right? Studies show smoking is the biggest modifiable risk factor for age-related macular degeneration. The chemicals in cigarette smoke can damage the retina, and activate the immune system, causing harmful inflammation.

Eat Right

Like all organs, the eyes are greatly impacted by the nutrients we put into our bodies. Antioxidants from fruits and vegetables, zinc from high-protein foods like beef and yogurt, and healthy unsaturated fats from olive oil, avocados, almond butter and the like can limit the progression of ARMD. Omega-3 fatty acids from salmon, tuna and walnuts also contribute to the fight.

Get Plenty of the Right Vitamins

If your diet doesn’t provide enough of the right vitamins, take a supplement. Studies show lutein and zeaxanthin play an important role in limiting ARMD symptoms. And the American Academy of Ophthalmology says, for patients at more advanced stages of macular degeneration, there’s a benefit in taking supplements that, in addition to lutein and zeaxanthin, include vitamin C, vitamin E, zinc oxide and cupric oxide.

Take Care of Your Total Health

Your body’s systems rely on each other for support. When one starts to fail, it often damages another. Keep your weight in check and exercise regularly to ensure your heart and blood pressure are in good shape, as these directly affect the blood vessels in your eyes.

If you’ve been diagnosed with age-related macular degeneration, you and your ophthalmologist will want to closely monitor the progression of your ARMD symptoms, so visit your eye doctor regularly.

In Gainesville, the physicians and staff at North Florida Cataract Specialists and Vision Care are experts in the diagnosis of age-related macular degeneration. They will gladly evaluate your symptoms, answer questions and recommend the best steps to help you maintain your vision.

Contact us today at 352-373-4300 to schedule your consultation.



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