Vision and Hearing related Problems in Old Age

 

 Loss of Vision

After the age of 65, one in three Americans suffers from some sort of loss in vision.

Symptoms of loss of vision

The common signs of vision problems are:

  • Squinting of eyes
  • Seeing flashes of light
  • Seeing spots
  • Cloudy vision
  • Missing steps while climbing or going down stairs
  • Missing traffic and street signs while driving
  • Difficulty in driving at night
  • Facing problems while threading needles or buttoning shirts

Causes of loss of vision

Loss of vision is generally caused by:

  • Glaucoma
  • Cataract formation
  • Macular degeneration
  • Diabetic retinopathy
  • Glaucoma is a condition when nerve fibers in the retina are destroyed due to pressure within the eyes.
  • Cataract formation obstructs the natural lens of the eye. Light is obstructed from reaching the retina under such conditions.
  • Macular degeneration is the condition where the macula or the central part of the retina is damaged.
  • Diabetic retinopathy occurs as a result of diabetes. The retina is starved of oxygen due to changes that happen to the blood vessels.

Treatment of loss of vision

If you are suffering from loss of vision, the first thing that you should do is visit an ophthalmologist to have your eyes checked. He can suggest the next plan of action for you according to the condition you suffer from. It is possible to manage glaucoma by using eye drops, medicines and laser treatment. Photodynamic therapy is used to arrest the progression of macular degeneration while cataract can be removed by a short surgical procedure. Laser treatment is often used for treating early stages of diabetic retinopathy.

Loss of Hearing

Loss of Hearing or hearing problems is found in a third of the US population between 65 and 74 years and half of the population over 85 years of age.

Symptoms of hearing loss

There are a few signs that will tell you when you need to consult a doctor for loss of hearing:

  • When you have difficulty in following conversations
  • When you experience problems hearing over the phone
  • When you feel that others are talking in very low voices

Causes of loss of hearing

Age-related loss of hearing or presbycusis can be caused by noise trauma or even genetic reasons.

Treatment of loss of hearing

A few basic tests like audiometer tests will determine whether you indeed have some hearing loss problem. The main treatment for hearing loss would be to find the right hearing aid for you.