Elderly people who are functionally impaired due to vision loss are at an extreme disadvantage (as opposed to a younger person who experiences gradual deterioration of their eyesight). Not only does vision loss make it difficult for an elderly person to take care of him or herself, but they usually have fewer people around them to make sure they are able to adequately prepare meals, manage their medications and avoid accidents. A loss of sight can also lead a person to feel irritable, depressed, disorientated and dizzy.
Research has shown that age is the best predictor of blindness and visual impairment. Vision loss affects a large amount of our aging population, with millions of American citizens having severe visual impairments after the age of 65.
The two most common causes of visual loss in elderly patients are normal deterioration of the eye tissue and increased incidence of eye pathology. Glaucoma, which is an eye disorder that affects the patients’ optic nerves, is one of the most common causes of blindness in people over the age of forty. Thanks to innovative technologies and advances in the optometry industry, however, many elderly patients experience partial loss of sight as opposed to complete blindness.
While the loss of vision doesn’t mean that an elderly person needs 24/7 care and attention, the person’s lifestyle is often profoundly affected – making it necessary to seek some type of program that can make the patient’s life easier.
How VNA can help you
The Visiting Nurse Association of the Treasure Coast (VNA) has launched a revolutionary clinical program designed to assist homebound patients coping with vision loss. Our experienced professionals at VNA are able to make significant, positive impacts in the patient’s life by enhancing safety and increasing independence. Find out more about our low vision services now!