Common eye problems and pediatric eye conditions affect well over four million Canadians, yet many citizens are unaware they have vision problems. Some serious eye disorders present no obvious symptoms. Your ophthalmologist can detect hidden eye problems through a comprehensive exam. Even Canadians with perfect 20/20 vision should visit their eye doctor regularly.
At some point in life, one in seven Canadians is expected to develop at least one of the most common eye conditions: glaucoma, retinal diseases, cataracts and macular degeneration.
These are startling statistics considering that most vision loss and eye conditions in Canada are avoidable. In fact, 75 percent of common eye problems in the country can be successfully treated or prevented. The key to eye health often comes down to lifestyle changes, early diagnosis, and treatment. Since so many common eye conditions and serious vision problems have no symptoms at the onset, regular eye exams from an ophthalmologist are vital.
The following is a list of the four most common eye conditions found among Canadians:
Glaucoma: When pressure increases inside the eye it can damage the optic nerve. Since there typically no symptoms before vision problems arise, this common eye condition is known as the silent thief. Undetected it leads to poor peripheral vision and eventually, permanent vision loss.
Cataracts: A cloudy, dense film that slowly develops inside the eye, a cataract prevents light from entering the retina and eventually leads to impaired eyesight or vision loss.
AMD: Age-related macular degeneration is a common eye disorder and a leading cause of vision loss among older Canadians. AMD damages the portion of the retina (macula) that perceives fine details, like facial features and reading print.
Diabetic Retinopathy: When glucose levels become abnormally elevated, swollen blood vessels may result, causing them to weaken and leak within the retina. This common eye problem is very damaging to the fragile retinal tissues.
Vision Health Month is officially May 2018; this is when Doctors of Optometry Canada will reach out and encourage citizens to be more proactive about saving their vision. This annual event is all about spreading the word about serious eye conditions and preventing unnecessary vision loss. An added benefit, $2 gets donated to the CNIB (Canadian Institute for the Blind) for every completed eye exam by participating Doctors of Optometry Canada during the month of May.