The onset of macular degeneration is a real blow, but it’s important to remember that there are steps you can take to keep your vision from worsening.
Macular degeneration affects your central vision, but doesn’t affect your side, or peripheral vision. That means you’ll have reduced or no ability to see what’s in front of you, but there are ways to adapt to your changing vision.
First of all, be sure to see your eye doctor regularly. He or she has likely diagnosed the condition, and may have sent you to a specialist, but will also be able to recommend a low-vision rehabilitation specialist, or occupational therapist, to help you maximize your limited vision. He or she also can stay on top of your condition, and change the prescription for your eyeglasses accordingly.
Here are a few steps you can take on your own, at home, that also will be helpful:
- Use magnifying lenses, either handheld or worn as glasses, to help you with reading and other close-up work.
- Change your computer display. Increase the font size in your computer’s settings, and adjust the monitor to show more contrast.
- Buy appliances made for low vision. You can find clocks, telephones and other appliances with extra-large numbers, or with built-in voice responses.
- Go with brighter bulbs. See what the highest level of bulb your lamps can support, and then change out your existing bulbs for new ones.
Like any other chronic condition, macular degeneration requires you to adapt to a new set of circumstances. Rely on your eye doctor for care and advice, however, and you’ll find that you can still be as independent and active as ever.