Nystagmus. Have you heard of this disease? Not many have, so you’re not alone. June 20th is International Nystagmus Day. This is a good time to learn more about this condition that could impact your mom or dad’s vision.
What is Nystagmus?
Nystagmus is a condition that affects the vision. Think about a muscle twitch. You could be driving in the car, sitting watching TV, or running errands when you feel the muscle start to jolt unexpectedly. It lasts for just a few minutes and goes away.
With nystagmus, the same type of situation occurs. You’re walking into a store, cooking dinner, or doing something when the eyes start moving around up and down, side to side, or in a circle.
While they’re moving around in this uncontrolled event, your vision is impaired. You may become dizzy, lose your balance, or find your depth perception is impacted. Things you’re looking at do not seem steady or in focus. It’s usually a symptom of another eye disease, but those who have it may never find out the exact cause.
Who Gets Nystagmus?
Many cases of nystagmus occur in young children. Acquired nystagmus is a form that affects older adults. It may be the result of MS or a traumatic brain injury like a stroke. It can also occur due to an inner ear infection, alcoholism, side effects of certain medications, or severe astigmatism.
How Do You Treat Nystagmus?
If you are dealing with nystagmus, your doctor will want to rule out other health issues. This often means you’ll have your optometrist working with your primary care physician. You may have multiple appointments with different offices until a cause is discovered. At that point, the treatment plan would be for whatever health condition is causing the issue.
If no cause is found, you may have to rely on glasses to help improve your vision as much as possible. Reading glasses with a high level of magnification, bright lighting, and large print can help make it easier to read.
Hire a Senior Care Aide
Your parent shouldn’t drive until the vision is okay. It may be that your parent won’t be able to drive again if a stroke or other serious health issue is found. Caregivers can help with transportation to stores, area homes, senior centers, and medical offices.
With a caregiver stopping by regularly, your parent also has assistance with tasks that require clear vision, such as shopping for groceries, ordering prescription refills, and reading the mail. Call a senior care agency to discuss other ways caregivers can help.
If you or an aging loved-one are considering hiring Elder Care in Folsom, CA, talk to the caring staff at Partners in Care today. Serving El Dorado, Nevada, Yuba, Sutter, Sacramento, Placer, Butte, Glenn, Yolo, & Colusa Counties! Call us 24 hours a day, 7 days a week! (530) 268-7423
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