Vision Loss and Depression
Vision loss is often associated with Anxiety and Depression.
It is not surprising that a reduction in vision will cause significant emotional distress and fear for the individual. What is most important is that we not only provide adequate treatment to minimise the vision loss but that we provide good support to individuals to minimise the psychological stress.
Vision Loss will lead to feelings of anxiety further preventing individuals from caring for others and themselves. It is likely to lead to reduction in mobility and access to social contacts. In fact loss of vision is one of the most feared results of ageing.
Unfortunately there is a misconception that vision is less important in old age and should be expected as part of the ageing process. In fact this is not the case. There are many ways that proper treatment can allow patients to continue to lead a full and engaging lifestyle.
Cataract surgery can often restore vision allowing patients to continue with hobbies and much social interaction.
There are now many magnifiers which will allow patients with macular degeneration to continue to read and enjoy their hobbies. The improvements in electronic devices have made the magnifiers much easier to use even in very elderly patients. The practical effect of this has a significant effect on people’s psychological well-being. It is important for family members and communities to ensure their loved ones get the right care for their eyes to prevent the social isolation and depression that can result.