Macular degeneration affects 1 in every 6 people over the age of 80. It is the leading cause of vision loss in Canada and the incidence is expected to double in the next 20 years. It is the breakdown of retina tissue in the center part of the retina (macula). In many cases what happens is, our eyes get older they lose their ability to get rid of waste product and the waste product collects in the back of the eye which is called drusen.
There are 2 common types of macular degeneration: Dry and Wet.
Dry macular degeneration is usually seen in early stage macular degeneration. Drusen begins to form and accumulate in the macula. As the drusen accumulates it forms little bumps in the macula and the macula goes from being nice and smooth to becoming bumpy, this causes images to be distorted and blurry.
Wet Macular degeneration is usually associated with the more advanced disease state. In the wet form the eye develops blood vessels that leak blood and cause fluid to leak and form large areas of distortion.
Prevention is the key in macular degeneration. Eye vitamins can help slow the progression: ex. Vitalux and PreserVision. Vitalux and PreserVision are ocular multivitamins which contains a specific combination of nutrients, this includes: Lutein, Zeaxanthin, Zinc and Cooper. Other preventive measures include: protecting our eyes from sun and UV exposure, healthy diet, and not smoking.