While spending time with her granddaughter in St. Louis 28 years ago, Gloria could not get that flyaway hair out of her eye. It was pestering her and wouldn’t go away no matter how many times she swiped her brow. Later, she noticed flashing lights in her rearview mirror when driving at night. But when she turned around to look, no one was behind her. It was then that Gloria decided it was time to see her optometrist. During her visit with her doctor, she learned these strange experiences were actually the side effects of macular degeneration.
Macular degeneration is a loss of central vision resulting from damage to the retina. The central part of the retina, called the macula, can become uneven as a result of fatty deposits or become scarred because of tiny leaking blood vessels. Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is by far the most common type of macular degeneration and is the leading cause of vision loss in Americans 60 years of age and older.
Over the next 25 years, Gloria would have surgery and receive several injections to curb the effects, but it was still difficult to manage small day-to-day tasks like reading the mail and the labels on her prescriptions. “I am grateful that my condition is quite manageable but there are still everyday struggles,” said Gloria. “NewView Oklahoma has provided me additional resources that allow me to overcome those struggles and continue to do more each day.”
And yes, Gloria does more. A highly involved member of the Spanish Cove Retirement Community in Yukon, Gloria participates in numerous activities, including board and card games and the drama group, just to name a few. Most notably, Gloria teaches water aerobics to her peers and swims every day.
If you have a friend or loved one who is living with macular degeneration, we can help them be as independent as possible. Contact NewView today at [email protected] or visit our website at NVOklahoma.org.