According to the World Health Organization, glaucoma is the second leading cause of blindness in the world. There is currently no cure for glaucoma, but seniors can reduce their risk of developing this condition by making some lifestyle changes, focusing on their health, and enhancing their quality of life.
Maintaining a high quality of life can be challenging for some seniors, but professional caregivers can help them obtain this goal. Families can trust in Victoria, BC, elder care experts to help their elderly loved ones focus on lifestyle choices that increase the chances of living a longer and healthier life. Here is a closer look at some of the most effective ways seniors can prevent glaucoma.
1. Exercise Safely and Often
Many studies have shown regular exercise can lower blood pressure and reduce eye pressure. However, some low-impact exercises such as yoga can increase blood pressure in the retina and cornea if a senior is not careful. That is why your loved one should only carry out movements that keep the head above the heart. Stationary bikes, walking, hiking, and swimming are all excellent alternatives.
Seniors with limited mobility may require assistance with exercises. If your senior loved one needs hourly care, Victoria, BC, Home Care Assistance is here to help. Our part-time caregivers are trained to assist older adults with a wide variety of everyday tasks, including meal prep, physical activity, and personal hygiene. We also provide 24-hour care and specialized care for seniors with Alzheimer’s, dementia, and Parkinson’s.
2. Lower Insulin Levels
When insulin spikes, it causes blood pressure to rise. Even after your loved one lowers his or her insulin level, it could take hours for the blood pressure to stabilize. Seniors who are at risk of developing glaucoma should try to keep their insulin levels consistent throughout the day. Eating fewer simple carbohydrates is one of the easiest ways to prevent insulin spikes and crashes. If your loved one cannot control insulin levels through dietary changes, he or she may need to speak with a doctor about being tested for prediabetes.
3. Stay Hydrated and Drink Slowly
Hypertension is extremely common among dehydrated seniors, but they should also avoid drinking large amounts of water in a short period. Drinking more than a few cups of water in a single sitting can quickly increase blood pressure and eye pressure. As an alternative, seniors should keep a container of water with them at all times and take small sips throughout the day.
4. Avoid Stimulants
A stimulant is any substance that increases the heart rate or forces the body to overproduce adrenaline. The most common stimulant in the world is caffeine, but many people consume dozens of different stimulants each day without even realizing it. Some medications produce side effects such as increasing the heart rate, and it can be dangerous to mix them with caffeine. There are also many natural herbal supplements that have an impact on blood pressure. Before taking any medications or supplements, your loved one should speak with a doctor and discuss the possible side effects.
5. Use Prescription Eye Drops
After being tested for glaucoma, your loved one’s eye doctor might prescribe eye drops to reduce inflammation in the eyes. For these eye drops to work correctly, they must be taken exactly as prescribed. The eye doctor might ask your loved one to use them at very specific times, and he or she must adhere to those suggestions to slow the progression of glaucoma. Your senior loved one may also be given additional pills to bring the blood pressure down to a healthy level.
Glaucoma is one of the many health conditions that can affect your loved one’s daily activities. If your senior loved one needs around-the-clock assistance at home, the Victoria, BC, 24-hour care professionals at Home Care Assistance are here to help. Our proprietary Balanced Care Method was designed to promote longevity by encouraging seniors to focus on healthy eating, regular exercise, mental engagement, and other important lifestyle factors. To learn about this method, call one of our friendly Care Managers at (250) 592-4881.