Canada’s Aging Population Faces Epidemic of Vision Loss
It’s White Cane Week and a good time to raise awareness of the issues facing the blind. Vision loss isn’t just an issue that many older adults and senior citizens face, but most adults can expect to encounter some form of vision loss as they enter their 50+ and senior years.
The Canadian National Institute for the Blind (CNIB) tells us that a demographic shift caused by our aging population has led to a mounting epidemic of vision loss in Canada.
Approximately half a million Canadians are estimated to be living with significant vision loss that impacts their quality of life, and every year more than 50,000 Canadians will lose their sight.
Age-related macular degenation (AMD) is the leading cause of vision loss in Canada. About 1.4 million Canadians live with AMD. Other major causes of vision loss include diabetic retinopathy, glaucoma, cataracts and refractive error.
To help prevent vision loss, get your eyes checked regularly by a professional, make simple lifestyle changes like wearing UV-protective sunglasses all year round, taking vitamins, quitting smoking, exercising regularly, controlling diabetes and maintaining a healthy diet high in omega-3 fatty acids and dark, leafy greens.