Macular degeneration, also known as age related macular degeneration (AMD), affects 1,600,000 people in the United States that are aged 50 years and older. If your optometrist, someone from a place like Vision Eyeland Super Optical LLC, sees signs that you have this eye disease, they will do many tests to confirm it. Unfortunately, there is no cure for this disease and there is no way to stop its onset even though there are some things you can do to slow down the progress. Below is some information about what macular degeneration is, the types of tests the eye doctor will do, as well as types of treatment.

Age Related Macular Degeneration

AMD affects the macula, which is the area that surrounds the center of your retina. This is the area of your eye that provides you with vision. If you get AMD, you will lose the central vision in your eye over time. This affects your sight no matter if you are looking at something far away or up close.  AMD does not affect your peripheral vision, which is your side vision, however.

There are two types of macular degeneration: dry and wet. The dry form is most common and does not affect your vision as much as the wet form.  With the dry form, the cells in the macular will break down slowly. Even though you will lose some central vision loss you will not lose all of it.

With wet macular degeneration, also known as advanced macular degeneration, the cells in the macula break down much faster. This results in you becoming completely blind. In most cases, people do not get wet macular degeneration unless they start out with the dry form. It is possible, however, that the dry form would never turn into the wet form.

Tests and Treatment

If the doctor sees any signs that you have macular degeneration they will dilate your eyes to allow them to see it better. They will also do a visual acuity test, and a special type of photography that gives them detailed pictures of the back of your retina. Your eye doctor can go over these tests, as well as other tests they will do. Your optometrist may send you to an ophthalmologist for further testing.  

There are vitamins the doctor will prescribe to you that can help prevent this eye disease from progressing to a more advanced stage. Your doctor may give you an Amsler grid and ask you to look at it periodically.  You should also lead a healthy lifestyle and eat properly. If you currently smoke, you need to quit as this can cause damage to your eyes. Wear sunglasses while you are outside to protect your eyes from the sun's harmful rays.

Your optometrist can go over all this information with you in more detail.