Why Do Eyes of Dementia Patients Look Different Than Normal?

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As one progresses in age, diseases such as dementia hit, which causes changes in vision and behavior patterns. The response or reflex changes because of dementia making your eyes look different from normal. Many people do not fully understand the problem and associate it with hallucinations, however that’s not the case. If you have an elderly dealing with such issues, we recommend you go through this blog for great insights on handling vision-affected patients.

Vision Changes and Dementia

Here is a list of changes that take place with tips to tackle them:

1. Blurred Vision

Blurring results in confusion and uneasiness. It makes the vision less sharp, making it difficult for the person to find objects. Additionally, cloudy vision makes reading and writing a tedious task, increasing the sufferer’s irritability.
Proper interaction with such individuals is required. Since they cannot see, make sure that you explain what is happening and properly introduce yourself in the beginning.

2. Slow Pupil Reaction

Late reactions of pupil dilation make transition hard from dark spaces to light. The adjustment requires some time, especially when a person has dementia; impaired vision and colors make decision-making difficult.
Keep the lights low and gradually increase their intensity in such a situation. When going out, give the patient plenty of time for proper adjustment from indoors to out. If possible, shield their eyes using sunglasses. Make changes around their living space, reduce glare and use blinds for light control.

3. Visual Field Defect

A visual field is the area your eyes can see and interpret. This field is narrow when a person has dementia, the eyes look different and the area is lesser than that of a normal individual. Usually, the field is only 12 inches making movement pretty difficult. The person feels like living with binoculars on.
Dementia patients see much less than we do when they are moving around, even a door in sight might not be seen. For this issue, use of bright contrasting colors helps a lot and makes it easier for the patient to look at things.

4. Depth Perception Problem

Advanced dementia patients’ eyes don’t work properly; some patients lose the luxury of using both eyes to see because the brain only interprets information from one. The affected individual cannot process the depth of the surface, making them prone to fall since their walking is hampered.
Moreover, their brain interprets the objects in front of them much closer than they are in real; that is why when you see a patient reaching out for something not close, help them get it. As far as walking is concerned, place dark rugs or mats on the floor and increase lighting.

5. Peripheral Vision Loss

Peripheral vision helps you see the stuff not placed right in front of you but on the sides without moving your head or eyes. You can easily hide on the sides since they cannot see from the corner of their eye. Loss of peripheral sight makes you lose balance, and increases fall risk.
Ensure you announce and properly tell them before coming so that they don’t get startled or frightened. Help them eat, keep the food directly in front so that they can see what is in front of them.

How Can A Caregiver Help?

Visual distortion increases the patients’ as well as the caregiver’s frustration. Let not your emotions cloud the judgment; understand the issue and root cause for proper rearrangement. Slow down your pace and handle situations with care; they require constant support. Home comfort solutions provide remodeling of the living space where the elderly can live in peace. Contact us now for more details at 713 623 1388.