Macular degeneration refers to a progressive eye condition that primarily affects older adults. Initially, macular degeneration can cause blurry vision, but vision loss is possible in more severe cases. If you live or work in the greater Hattiesburg area, Optometric Clinic can help you identify and manage a macular degeneration treatment plan.
What is Macular Degeneration?
Macular degeneration, also known as AMD (age-related macular degeneration), refers to a medical condition that damages the macula, an essential part of the retina in the eye responsible for your central vision and viewing finer details that assist in recognizing people/faces and more.
Types of Macular Degeneration
Dry AMD (Non-neovascular AMD) – which accounts for about 90% of all diagnosed cases. Dry AMD is when macula cells break down gradually, causing changes in vision that may include:
• Blurred vision.
• The formation of macular drusen (tiny yellow deposits).
• Difficulty completing tasks that require sharp vision.
• Wet AMD (Neovascular AMD) – which is more serious and causes quick vision loss.
Wet AMD causes the retina's blood vessels to grow abnormally, ultimately damaging the macula. This may cause:
• Wavy or distorted vision.
• A blind spot centrally located in your field of vision.
What Causes Macular Degeneration?
While the specific cause of macular degeneration is not entirely known, various risk factors can be identified by an optometrist or eye doctor:
• Age is a significant risk factor. As you age, your risk of developing AMD grows – and is riskiest for those who are over 50.
• Smoking is among the major risk factors for macular degeneration – but it is avoidable.
• AMD is more common among Caucasians.
• A diet low in antioxidants and certain vitamins may contribute to AMD.
• Genetics play a role and may increase your likelihood of developing macular degeneration.
• Certain medical conditions may increase your risk of developing AMD.
At present, AMD has no cure, but optometry treatment options can help manage its progression and symptoms. These include:
• Laser therapy.
• In severe cases, surgery.
Early detection through routine eye exams is essential to manage AMD effectively and preserve your vision. Lifestyle adjustments can reduce your risk of developing AMD or, at least, assist in slowing its progression:
• Protect your eyes from UV light.
• Stop smoking.
• Eat a well-balanced diet, and more.
Find Macular Degeneration Eye Care in Hattiesburg, MS
Are you looking for an eye doctor near you? If you suspect you have AMD or have a family history of the condition, it's important to consult a professional eye doctor or optometrist for a proper evaluation and management. Contact Optometric Clinic at 601-545-2020 or visit us online.