Living with age-related macular degeneration

If you have age-related macular degeneration, also known as AMD, it is important for you to know that there are many services to help you deal with it so you can continue doing the things you want to do. Millions of Americans with AMD enjoy fully-functioning and independent lives.

AMD causes damage to the macula, the area in the center of your retina, so you may be experiencing visual symptoms such as blank or blurry spots in your central vision. The extent to which your vision will be impacted depends on various factors, including how soon AMD was detected and treated, whether you have dry or wet AMD, and if it has affected one or both eyes.

Lighthouse Guild’s comprehensive team of eye care professionals can help you deal with AMD and the various stages of vision loss.

Your eye doctor at our Optometric and Low Vision Clinic will help you manage and deal with your condition. No matter how far your AMD has progressed, our team of eye care professionals can help you enjoy a safe, self-reliant and normal life again.

How you can deal with AMD and vision loss:

  • Meet routinely with your eye doctor. Your eye doctor will monitor your condition and recommend how often you need an eye exam.
  • If you are experiencing visual hallucinations—such as colors, shapes or images—you may have Charles Bonnet syndrome, a common condition related to AMD. These hallucinations often disappear a year to 18 months after they begin. In the meantime, we can teach you strategies to cope, for example, by focusing on a real object for a short while.
  • Make healthy lifestyle choices. Your everyday decisions, like eating a healthy diet and not smoking, may help prevent or slow the progression of vision loss from AMD.
  • Learn skills for everyday tasks. Our eye health and rehabilitation specialists can help you maximize your usable vision. They can teach you skills and strategies to drive, read, write, cook or fix things around the house. You can also receive training for using magnifying and adaptive devices so that you can carry out your daily tasks.
  • Stay positive, and engage with family and friends: A diagnosis of AMD and related vision loss can be overwhelming and may be impacting you in many ways. Services provided by our clinical social workers, psychologists and psychiatrists, in a welcoming and supportive environment, can help you adjust to living with vision loss.

Lighthouse Guild’s full service Optometric and Low Vision Clinic: 212-769-6313