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Dr Hilary Jones Discusses Visual Impairment.

What is Visual Impairment?

Visual impairment is what we mean when a person has loss of vision that can never be fully corrected by using glasses or contact lenses.

How Common is Visual Impairment?

It is thought that up to 2 million people in the UK are living with visual impairment. Of those 2 million around 365,000 are registered blind or partially sighted.

Visual Impairment – A Checkup is Essential!

Because we rely so heavily on our vision and because visual impairment is so common it is recommended that everybody sees an optician every two years at least so that signs of visual loss can be looked for. If someone already has visual impairment regular eye tests are even more important to monitor further changes in the eyes with a view to keeping any progression to a minimum.

What Causes Visual Impairment

In the UK the majority of the cases of visual impairment are due to the conditions which develop as we age. About 80% of people who are partially sighted are over 65. Visual loss however isn’t inevitable with aging as many common conditions can be treated or prevented. Of these conditions the important ones are age related Macular Degeneration (AMD) the macular ceases to function normally. Cataracts are common and occur where cloudy areas form in the lenses of the eye. Glaucoma which can develop gradually with no early symptoms occurs where fluid pressure builds up inside the eye damaging the optic nerve. Diabetic retinopathy occurs where blood vessels at the back of the eye become damaged due to high blood sugar levels in people with diabetes.

At Risk

It may also be really useful to request a fall sensor if you have a careline alarm. A Fall sensor will detect when you have fallen and activate your careline alarm. So even if you cant reach your pendant, you will get immediate assistance from your care team.

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