In 2003, a study found that more than six million senior citizens had severe vision loss. Four age-related eye diseases stand out as leading causes of vision loss, they are:
• Age-related macular degeneration
• Diabetic retinopathy
If your mom finds her vision is worsening, it’s time to take action. Here are the five steps you need to take to help her.
Schedule an Eye Exam
Make sure your mom sees an eye doctor. She will be tested for age-related eye diseases. Treatments can help slow the loss of vision, but some treatments can repair damage or stop the vision loss from worsening.
You should attend this appointment. Make sure you and your mom both have a chance to ask questions. Talk about her options for retaining or possibly improving her vision. You also need to ask if there are lifestyle changes she needs to make.
It May Be Time to Take Her Keys
If her eye doctor says she doesn’t meet the state guidelines for driving a car, take her keys away. Check your local laws to know for certain. In many states, if vision is worse than 20/40 or 20/50, a driver’s license will not be issued. Don’t let her convince you that she’s still okay to drive. If she continues to drive and causes an accident, the potential lawsuits and charges aren’t worth the risk.
Evaluate Her Home’s Layout
As your mom’s vision worsens, her home’s current layout may pose a safety issue. Rearrange furniture so that there are no obstacles that can cause her to trip or fall. She needs to be able to get from her bedroom to the bathroom, from the bathroom to the living room or family room, and from these rooms to the kitchen.
Make Sure Stairs Are Noticeable
If she has stairs, you may need to install a strip of traction tape or a gate at the top and bottom of stairs. When she reaches the strip, she’ll feel the difference in texture and know that a step up or down is coming up. You can also help with the transition by replacing carpeting at the top or bottom of stairs or in sunken living rooms using tiles or another distinctive change in flooring type.
Provide Support in Hallways, Bathrooms, and on Stairs
Grab bars in the hallway can help her navigate a long corridor without fear of falling. It’s worth paying for a rail to extend the length of a hallway wall. Stairs and bathrooms should also have rails and grab bars.
Your mom will need some help around the home as her vision worsens. Caregivers offer that help. They can make sure she safely walks from one room to another. Caregivers can help her up and down stairs. They can cook meals, help her in and out of the shower, and assist with light housework. Call a home care agency to discuss services that benefit your mom when she’s losing her vision.
If you or an aging loved-one are considering Senior Care in Estero, FL, please contact the caring staff at Touched by An Angel Senior Care today. Call 239-215-8803 today.