Many eye diseases like age-related macular degeneration, cataracts, diabetic eye disease and glaucoma have no early warning signs or symptoms. That’s why you should have an annual dilated exam to detect eye diseases in their early stages before vision loss occurs. If you feel that your vision isn’t what you’d like it to be, put these tips for vision loss in place to make sure that you stay safe.
Shine a light
- Keep your home well-lit with extra lamps to make reading, writing, cooking and sewing easier. Try out different light bulbs to see which work best for you. Use a light with a flexible arm so that you can direct the light to where it’s needed.
- Stairs especially should be well-lit. Make sure that you can easily make out the first and last steps.
- At night, leaving on a hall or bathroom light to make it easier to navigate in the dark.
- Use blinds or shades on windows to reduce the glare of sunlight.
- Add contrast to make it easier to see. For example, paint or tape can add color to light switches, thermostats, doorknobs, and hand rails.
- Watch out for things like loose rugs, chairs, or small tables. These can get in the way and cause a fall. If you have a pet, make sure that his items are kept out of the way.
- Keep magnifiers handy so that you can easily read or do other tasks. Use pen-sized flashlights to see more dark places more clearly.
- Organize your kitchen cabinets so that you can reach frequently used items easily.
- Mark cabinets, drawers, supplies, and medications with large letters.
- Familiarize yourself with technology because you can find many tips for vision loss here. You may want to invest in talking calculators, clocks, and watches to make simple tasks easy.
- Many electronic devices, including smartphones and tablets, can be controlled with your voice. You can use your voice to search the web, send a text message, or open an app.
- When using a computer, e-reader, or tablet enlarge the font size to make reading easier. Consider getting computer monitors, laptops, tablets, televisions, or other devices with a larger screen.
November is National Family Caregivers Month. Put these tips into practice and show your loved one that you care.