Overcoming the 3 Most Common Age-Related Conditions Causing Visual Impairment 

Every stage of life has its own unique set of challenges, and for older people, age-related eye conditions that result in visual impairment or blindness are a common occurrence. Vision loss can be overwhelming, but it need not be an obstacle that negatively impacts quality of life.

Three Common Age-Related Eye Conditions 

Age-related Macular Degeneration (AMD) is a leading cause of vision loss worldwide.  It is a progressive condition where aging causes damage to the macula, the part of the eye that controls sharp, detailed central vision. This causes the central visual field to become blurry or to develop dark spots. It can also cause vision to become distorted where objects seem to be displaced and/or straight lines appear wavy. 

Glaucoma can occur at any age, but it is another leading cause of vision loss for people over the age of 60. Glaucoma occurs when fluid build-up causes high eye pressure. This ultimately damages the optic nerve, the part of the eye that delivers visual input to the brain. Glaucoma is not easily detected, because its effects are so gradual and decreased vision is not noticeable until its later stages. 

Cataracts occur in older adults because with time the lenses in the eyes may break down and begin to leak protein that clumps together. When untreated it causes blurry, hazy, or cloudy vision.

Taking the first Step to Overcome Vision Loss 

With vision loss comes a slew of limitations. No longer being able to drive, read regular print, clearly see the faces of loved ones, and perform daily task with ease can be very discouraging for someone who has always been able to do these things. 

Encouraging a positive outlook is the first step to overcoming any difficulty in life and it’s no different when facing vision impairment. It’s important to understand that medical conditions do not define individuals and people have the power to choose to live meaningful, purposeful, and even joyful lives regardless of their age or physical disabilities.

Support & Resources 

From there, it’s a matter of finding real solutions to accomplish everyday goals. Staying connected to family and friends and getting involved with a church and/or a support group can greatly ease this process and increase confidence in maintaining independence. 

Fortunately, we live in a time where there are countless options available as far as having tools for the elderly community. Whether it’s services like ride sharing and personal shopping assistance, or assistive devices like magnifiers and money identifiers, or high-tech assistive technology like screen readers and a fully voice operated smart phone like the RealSAM Pocket—there are real solutions to adapting to life with vision loss. 

By Guenivir Kendrick with help from ChatGPT


Cataract. AOA.org. (n.d.). Retrieved March 18, 2023, from https://www.aoa.org/healthy-eyes/eye-and-vision-conditions/cataract?sso=y 

Glaucoma. AOA.org. (n.d.). Retrieved March 18, 2023, from https://www.aoa.org/healthy-eyes/eye-and-vision-conditions/glaucoma?sso=y 

Macular degeneration. AOA.org. (n.d.). Retrieved March 18, 2023, from https://www.aoa.org/healthy-eyes/eye-and-vision-conditions/macular-degeneration?sso=y

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