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What Alzheimer’s Disease Can Reveal About Your Eyesight

Jun 02, 2021

Aging Parents

What Alzheimer’s Disease Can Reveal About Your Eyesight

Alzheimer’s disease can trigger changes in your loved one’s vision, such as color perception, peripheral vision, motion detection, and depth perception. Getting annual Alzheimer eye tests will help you detect and treat the early signs of eyesight problems sooner. Read more to learn about the eyesight related problems that Alzheimer’s can cause.

How Does Alzheimer’s Disease Affect Your Eyesight?

A person's eyesight can identify the disease even before they develop the symptoms. If the retinal nerve of the eye that comes out of the brain becomes narrower, they may have the onset of Alzheimer's disease. The beta-amyloid protein accumulation in the brain is the first noticeable sign of Alzheimer's. They start to develop 15 to 20 years before the onset of Alzheimer's and can be identified through brain imaging techniques.

The thickness of the retina can be examined to confirm the disease, as patients with Alzheimer's disease will have thinner retina. You can experience blurry vision, which leads to the loss of sharpness of eyesight, making the objects you see appear out of focus or foggy.

What Kind of Eyesight Problems Can Alzheimer Cause?

An Alzheimer’s patient can experience four common vision deficits, which can cause them to make mistakes in perceptions, including:

  • Unable to Detect Motion

    Some patients cannot detect movement. Watching television and fast motion activities, become challenging for them. This will eventually make them feel confused or lost, even around their family members and friends.

  • Depth Perception

    Judging distances, changes in elevation, or differentiating between a three-dimensional object and a flat picture can be challenging for patients with Alzheimer. Poor depth perception is prominent when they try to pick up the flowers on a floral fabric or a see-through bottle filled with water on a glass table. Their attempt to get those things can result in severe injuries.

  • Reduced Peripheral Vision

    The field of vision narrows for people as they age, but for those with Alzheimer’s disease, it narrows dramatically. They may be unable to see the things at the bottom, top, and on the sides. As a result, they may tend to bump into things.

  • Difficulty Identifying Colors

    Alzheimer’s patients have a hard time recognizing colors and experience trouble picking out the objects that are of similar color. Caregivers should try to keep different-colored objects around Alzheimer’s patients to keep them at ease. For example, if you are going to serve a beverage to them, make sure the color of the liquid is not the same as the color of the glass you choose to serve.

  • Problems with Object Recognition

    People with Alzheimer's disease may see an object correctly with their eyes, but their brains may misinterpret what they see. Therefore, they may not accurately or correctly identify some things or people they see.

Steps to Preserve Vision with Early-Onset Alzheimer's Disease

Although Alzheimer's disease can affect your vision, you can take certain steps that can prevent your eyesight problems before they impact your overall eye health. These include:

  • Manage Your Vision Problems

    People diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease are mostly older than 60 years old and may already have age-related vision problems such as macular degeneration and cataracts. Both the disease-induced and age-related vision problems can increase their vulnerability. Managing present eye conditions and decreasing the risk of additional vision problems is essential to sustain good eye health.

  • Routine Eye Exams

    Having your routine eye exams as prescribed by your eye doctor is essential, as they help diagnose and treat vision problems early.

  • Healthy Lifestyle

    A healthy lifestyle combines a healthy diet and regular exercise. Make sure to eat a well-balanced diet that includes fresh vegetables, fruits, and lean protein. Do simple workouts such as walking, cycling, swimming, and jogging for over 20 minutes a day.

Alzheimer's patients need a high level of care to maintain their well-being and safety. If you are looking for the best and customized home care for Alzheimer's patients, contact Newport Home Care today.

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