Eye Opening

Photo by Alexandra Gorn on Unsplash

A few weeks ago I was woken up by an emergency alert on my cell phone two times. So, I had to check my phone to find out what it was all about. Fortunately it didn’t concern me, so I quickly went back to sleep. Unfortunately this set the tone for my sleep for the rest of the night and I ended up having very shallow sleep. Then I was awake at 5 am, which is way too early for me to get up. I stayed in bed trying to sleep more, but at 6 am I gave up and decided to just get up.

To my surprise, it turned out to be very refreshing. I even found my brain seemed to be functioning better, judging by my ability to do a counting memory exercise while doing 100 squats, as I usually do every morning.

One of the things I was thinking about while trying to get back to sleep was eye health. As I became older, my eyesight has deteriorated. Eye tests and new glasses helped me to retain reasonable eyesight, but in recent years I have found that my vision was no longer good enough, even with glasses. My eye doctor had told me that I was starting to develop cataracts, so I knew what was coming. A few months ago, I went to an ophthalmologist and was told that I would have to have surgery done on both eyes.

I had read about hearing affecting memory, so I checked to see if eyesight also affects memory. Well, it turned out to be a real eye-opener (no pun intended)!

It is well known that poor blood circulation in the brain results in dementia. It also affects eyesight because not enough blood is reaching the back of the eyes. I am in pretty good health without vascular health issues, so the interesting question for me is whether poor eyesight without vascular dementia would still affect cognitive function.

This study shows that poor eyesight, even without vascular health issues, has a direct correlation with cognitive decline. Even more important, this study showed that people who have had an ophthalmological procedure had 56% less dementia. So, it is extremely important that we look after our eyes. You can read more details about it in this article: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2842219/

During my last appointment with an ophthalmologist, I made arrangements to have my cataracts removed so that I can see better, and hopefully improve my cognitive health. Unfortunately, the surgery got postponed due to the Covid-19 pandemic. At the moment I have no idea when I will get the operation, but I am really looking forward to seeing the effects of my eye surgery. I sincerely hope that it will have a significant effect on my mild cognitive impairment (MCI). I will follow up with my experience in future postings.

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