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A leading cause of vision loss worldwide, age-related macular degeneration (AMD) typically develops in people over the age of 50. Some people are at higher risk for developing this eye condition than others. For instance, if you have a family history of AMD, you are at a higher risk of developing it yourself.

Your local optometrist recommends watching out for these early signs of AMD.

Common Symptoms of AMD

There are two types of AMD, wet and dry. Symptoms depend on which type you have and what stage the disease has progressed to. People with early dry AMD usually don’t experience any symptoms. Some patients with intermediate dry AMD still don’t experience symptoms, while others notice a slight blurriness in their central vision or find it hard to see in low lighting conditions.

Whether you have wet or dry AMD, a late-stage condition may cause you to start seeing straight lines as crooked or wavy. Individuals with late AMD tend to see blank spots or expansive blurry areas in their field of vision. Colors may not be as vibrant as before, and seeing under low light will become more challenging. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, be sure to schedule an eye exam right away.

How Do You Know If You’re at Risk?

The older you get, the higher your risk for developing AMD becomes, especially if you are over 50. Individuals with a family history of eye conditions, smokers and Caucasians are more likely to develop this condition.

Luckily, there are several things you can do to lower your risk for AMD. Exercising regularly and eating well-balanced meals can help slow the progression of AMD and lower your risk. Seeking support to help quit smoking and maintaining healthy cholesterol and blood pressure levels can also help significantly.

At Spectrum Eye Care, we’re here to take care of your vision and eye health. We offer a wide range of eye care services, from eye exams and vision correction to pre- and post-operative care for patients undergoing LASIK eye surgery. Call us at (704) 817-4600 or fill out our online form to schedule your appointment.