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Vision and Aging

Infographic on the Aging Eye

Aging and Your Eyes

What vision changes are normal with age?

  • Needing glasses to see up close.
  • Having trouble adjusting to glare.
  • Having difficulty telling apart some colors.
  • Needing more light to see well.

Are vision loss and blindness a normal part of aging?

No! But as you age, you are at higher risk for developing age-related eye diseases and conditions:

  • Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) - damage to the macula of the eye.
  • Cataract - Clouding of the lens of the eye.
  • Diabetic retinopathy - damage to blood vessels in the retina.
  • Glaucoma - Damage to the optic nerve.
  • Dry eye - Eyes do not make enough tears.
  • Low vision - Difficulty seeing, even with glasses, medicine or surgery.

Are there warning signs?

Many eye diseases have no early warning signs but can be detected through a comprehensive dilated eye exam.

What can I do to protect my sight?

  • Have regular dilated eye exams.
  • Know your family's eye health history.
  • Be physically active.
  • Eat a diet rich in fish and green leafy veggies.
  • Control your diabetes if you have it.
  • Stop smoking.
  • Wear sunglasses and a brimmed hat outside.
  • Wear protective eyewear when working around your house or playing sports.

What if I've already lost vision?

Help is available. Talk to your eye care professional about vision rehabilitation.

Where can I learn more about vision and aging?
Visit www.nei.nih.gov/agingeye

Source: National Eye Institute, 2013

Download Infographic on Aging and Your Eyes






Department of Health and Human Services NIH, the National Institutes of Health USA.gov