Age-related Macular Degeneration: Protect Your Vision Today

Age-related macular degeneration is a common eye condition that causes vision loss and can significantly impact one’s quality of life. In Australia about one in seven over the age of 50 years will have some signs of age-related macular degeneration. In this article we will discuss what age-related macular degeneration is, the risk factors, and proactive measures you can take to safeguard your vision.

Understanding Age-related Macular Degeneration

At the heart of the retina lies the macula, responsible for central vision crucial for tasks like reading and driving. Macular degeneration is a painless yet progressive disease affecting the central vision and can lead to difficulty with everyday activities such as recognising faces and reading.

There are two main types of age-related macular degeneration: dry and wet. Dry macular degeneration is the more common type and involves the gradual deterioration and death of retinal cells in the macular. Wet macular degeneration is characterised by the growth of abnormal blood vessels which can cause swelling and bleeding. Dry macular degeneration can turn into wet macular degeneration at any point. 

The three main risk factors for age-related macular degeneration are:



family history

Family History



Will I have any symptoms? 

In early and even intermediate stages there can be no symptoms which is why regular eye examinations are so important. 

In later stages of macular degeneration you may experience

  • Distorted vision, straight lines appear way or bent 
  • Dark and blurry patches in your vision
  • Difficulty with daily tasks such as reading, recognising faces

If you notice any of these symptoms, please see your optometrist or ophthalmologist urgently. 

Are there treatments available for Age-related Macular Degeneration? 

Unfortunately there is no cure for macular degeneration. However, wet macular degeneration can be treated using ongoing anti VEGF injections in the eye. These injections are effective in managing wet macular degeneration and preventing further vision loss.

There are currently no treatments for dry macular degeneration. However, lifestyle modifications, eating a healthy diet focused on certain nutrients, avoiding smoking and protecting your eyes from UV can help slow down the disease. Furthermore, there are nutritional supplements that have been shown in research to also help. 

How Eyecare Plus Optometrists Can Help

Regular eye examinations are essential for early detection and monitoring of macular degeneration. Using advanced equipment, our optometrists are able to conduct comprehensive assessments, including pupil dilation and digital retinal imaging, to track changes in your macula over time.

We can also give you individualised advice on how to preserve your macular health, and provide a referral to an ophthalmologist when needed

Don’t wait until symptoms arise – prioritise regular eye exams and adopt a proactive approach to safeguarding your vision.

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