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Helping Lake Forest and surrounding area residents recognize macular degeneration symptoms

Vision is something that can easily be taken for granted, even when mild impairment occurs, such as the need for reading glasses. Macular degeneration, which is often related to the aging process, affects most people slowly, stealing vision a little at a time. The changes that occur produce no pain and usually no sudden vision problems, but they have the potential to lead to vision loss over time.

Because macular degeneration can interfere with normal daily functions, such as reading, driving, or even recognizing the faces of loved ones, early detection is vitally important. We encourage our patients from Lake Forest and the surrounding areas to visit us regularly for eye exams, and to learn how to recognize macular degeneration symptoms as well.

Early signs of this serious condition include fuzziness or distortion of central vision. This can include straight lines appearing wavy or blurriness of printed materials. Some notice shadows in their central vision, with clearer vision at each side. Any such changes in vision, including the following, warrant further investigation:

  • Brighter light is needed to read or work up close.
  • The eyes have difficulty adapting when entering low light areas.
  • Printed words become increasingly blurry.
  • Colors do not appear as vivid as they once did.
  • Objects in central vision appear hazy.
  • A spot of distortion, blurriness, or blindness develops in the central field of vision.

Protecting vision through awareness

[img1]The Orange County Eye Institute conducts both preliminary diagnostic testing as well as condition-specific testing such as the Amsler grid to identify changes in vision for early treatment.

Awareness may be our best protection against this condition, as there is yet no complete correction. Over the past several years, studies have been performed to assess the risk factors of macular degeneration. Although genetics, weight, and eye color have all been implicated in various studies, the only risks consistently linked to this condition, according to the American Academy of Ophthalmology, are smoking and aging.

Fortunately, we have learned that the aging process can be slowed through certain lifestyle habits. Preventative measures against macular degeneration include:

  • Do not smoke. If you smoke, quit.
  • Enjoy dark, leafy green vegetables regularly. Foods such as kale and raw spinach provide excellent nutrients for eye health.
  • Eat raw fruits and nuts on a daily basis.
  • Take a multi-vitamin, fish oil, or eye-specific supplement as recommended by your ophthalmologist.
  • Wear sunglasses with adequate UV protection.
  • Visit the Orange County Eye Institute regularly for comprehensive eye examinations.


(949) 441-5444

Clear vision is one part of total wellbeing. Contact our office to schedule your eye exam, and protect your vision.


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