If there might be one of our five senses that we most utilize and potentially take for granted, it would be our vision. It is estimated that half of visual impairment and blindness can be prevented through early diagnosis and timely treatment. Despite cost-effective treatment and eye preservation interventions, the number of potentially blinding eye diseases continues to escalate. Increased awareness can help remind all of us to have our eyes examined regularly. What are the leading causes of vision impairment and blindness? Age, diabetes, cataracts, which remain the major cause of blindness, age-related macular degeneration, and glaucoma. For most of us age, diabetes, and glaucoma (silent and commonly not diagnosed). There isn’t much we can do about age, but there is plenty we can do related to diabetes (ages 20-75) and glaucoma (40-over age 60). 37 million Americans have diabetes and 1 in 5 individuals don’t know they have it and 96 million US adults have prediabetes. Regular vision exams are key to the management of good vision health along with eye protection when outdoors. Through regular eye exams and early detection of vision and physical eye anatomy changes, the sooner treatment can begin to prevent, slow, or stop the progression of vision loss.
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