February is Age-related Macular Degeneration Awareness Month
Many people have heard about age-related macular degeneration or AMD. It is the leading cause of blindness in North America for individuals over the age of 55. Ninety percent of new cases of legal blindness in Canada are due to AMD. Fortunately, earlier diagnoses and the treatments available are making a big difference in helping people maintain vision. For example in Denmark the incidence of legal blindness attributable to AMD in those over 50 years of age decreased from 52 cases per 100,000 in the year 2000 to 26 cases per 100,000 in the year 2010. However, aging populations around the globe will result in more overall cases and research continues to try and improve prevention and treatment.
A healthy diet and lifestyle can help to reduce risk of developing AMD. Some people also take nutritional supplements. Be sure to obtain professional medical advice about the risks and benefits and appropriate doses of nutritional supplements. A patient’s individual eye health, general health and medications will affect recommendations regarding diet and nutritional supplements. Your eye doctor, family physician and pharmacist can all be of assistance.
To learn more about how to reduce your risk of age-related macular degeneration make an appointment with a Thunder Bay Eye Care optometrist.