Cataracts and age-related macular degeneration (AMD) are two of the leading causes of vision loss in the United States, affecting more than 24 million Americans and 10 million Americans, respectively. You can avoid the stress of trying to come up with last-minute gift ideas this season and focus your energy on giving the gift of healthy eyesight instead.
Here are four gifts that will enhance the vision of anyone on your holiday gift list:
One of the leading causes of cataracts is sun damage from UV rays, so purchase prescription sunglasses for your family members this year. To effectively prevent cataracts, sunglasses must block 100 percent of UVA and UVB rays. Many sunglasses in stores favor fashion over function, but you can be assured of full UVA and UVB protection when you order custom sunglasses from your ophthalmologist.
About one in every six people has a developing cataract by the age of 40. Cataracts continue to grow and affect vision until they are surgically removed. If cataracts are impairing the vision of your spouse or parent, give the gift of new sight by scheduling cataract surgery. This procedure is one of the most common and safe operations performed today, and certain types of cataract surgery are fully covered by insurance.
Blue Light Filter Glasses
Every time you look at your phone or sit in front of a screen, you expose your eyes to unnatural blue light, a high-energy wavelenth of visible light that penetrates deeply into the retina. Some studies show overexposure to blue light can damage the retina’s light-sensitive cells and cause changes similar to macular degeneration. To minimize possible damage from blue light, purchase blue light filter glasses for your family and friends this holiday. You can select from several styles and frames in online stores, or you can purchase them through your ophthalmologist.
Comprehensive Eye Exams
A comprehensive eye exam with dilation is an essential part of preventative health care for the whole family. Many people think eye exams are only necessary when there is a vision problem, but this is untrue. Eye disease can develop slowly and may go unnoticed for years unless you see a doctor. The best way to maintain healthy vision is to visit your eye doctor annually, so make eye exams a December tradition.
Call your eye doctor to schedule eye exams with dilation for your family. If you would like to find an eye care specialist in your area, click here and enter your zip code in the top right corner.