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Aging eyes Iqaluit NU

Baby boomers entering their senior years are the fastest growing demographic. Because of aging, this group should have their eyes checked on a regular basis to spot signs of serious diseases.

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Aging eyes

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(NC)-Baby boomers entering their senior years are the fastest growing demographic in Canada and keeping pace with this steady influx is the matter of the ageing eye.

A recent survey about attitudes towards eye health was commissioned by the Canadian Association of Optometrists and it revealed that a majority of the ageing population does not believe it has any control over vision loss and are only likely to visit an optometrist when already experiencing a vision problem. This October during Eye Health Month, optometrists want to remind Canadians that vision loss is often preventable and early detection is key.

"People commonly associate eye exams with charts with the big letters but those days are long gone. Eye exams look inside the eye and can uncover changes in the eye caused by high blood pressure, diabetes, retinal disorders and glaucoma," said Dr. Koltun, President of the Canadian Association of Optometrists. "Since there are more treatment and rehabilitation options than ever before, early detection is critical."

Despite feeling healthy and being able to see clearly, a proactive approach to eye health is often overlooked. A comprehensive eye examination provides optometrists with information about the health of the eyes, and offers indications about diseases that also affect the whole body, like diabetes and hypertension.

Because not all eye conditions offer symptoms or warnings, Canadians are reminded not to take their eye health for granted. Following are some eye conditions affecting the baby boomers:

Glaucoma can result when excessive fluid pressures damage the optic nerve. It is one of the leading causes of blindness in Canada. Glaucoma can be effectively treated with prescription eye drops, and in some cases, surgery may be required. A simple and painless procedure allows your optometrist to measure the internal pressures of your eye. Early detection is the key to success when fighting glaucoma. Most glaucomas offer no pain or symptoms.

Cataracts are another common condition you may encounter. Cataracts occur as the lens becomes cloudy, distorting your vision. Cataracts are most often found in persons over the age of 55, but can occur in younger people as well. This condition often requires a corrective lens change or surgical removal.

Macular Degeneration is a disease that obscures a person's central field of vision.

It is the leading cause of vision loss and blindness for seniors in North America. Early detection is the key to managing the disease - that's why yearly exams with your Optometrist are recommended.

- News Canada