Hispanics at Higher Risk for Eye Disease
Many common eye diseases that can lead to vision loss and blindness—diabetic eye disease, glaucoma, or age-related macular degeneration—often have no early warning signs or symptoms.
That makes it imperative to have regular eye exams to make sure the eyes are healthy and seeing their best.
However, you might be at higher risk for eye disease if you have a family history of eye disease; have diabetes; are African American, Hispanic/Latino, American Indian, or Alaska Native; or are older than 50.
For example, diabetic retinopathy, a leading cause of blindness caused by uncontrolled diabetes, occurs more often in Latinos than in Whites. Older adults are at higher risk of developing age-related eye diseases and conditions, such as age-related macular degeneration (AMD), glaucoma, or cataract.
“If you are at higher risk of eye disease, having a comprehensive dilated eye exam is the best thing you can do to protect your vision,” says Dr. Paul A. Sieving of the National Eye Institute, part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). “With early detection, treatment can slow or stop vision loss and reduce the risk of blindness.”
In addition to having regular eye exams, eating a healthy diet, not smoking, and wearing protective eyewear are just a few other things you can do to protect your sight.
For more information on eye health during May, Healthy Vision Month, go here.
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