Checklist: Recognizing Signs of Vision Loss in Older Adults

People with vision loss from an undiagnosed age-related eye disease may display some of the following behaviors. Check with the family doctor or an eye care professional to determine the cause. Often confusion from dementia or Alzheimer’s can result in similar behaviors. People with vision loss might:
  • Constantly bump into things, shuffle their feet or steps hesitantly
  • Walk up and down stairs more slowly and cautiously than before
  • Under- or over-reach for objects
  • Has changed how they read, watch television, drive, walk or engage in hobbies
  • Complains that the lighting is inadequate for reading and other activities
  • Hold reading materials very close to their face or at an angle
  • Have less clear writing than before
  • Display difficulty identifying faces or objects
  • Dress in clashing patterns and color combinations
  • Have trouble cutting food and getting food on a fork
  • Spill food off their plate while eating
  • Over-fill their drinking glass when pouring themselves a drink

See Your Eye Doctor Immediately If….

You or someone you know is experiencing the following:
  • Sudden hazy or blurry vision
  • Recurrent pain in or near the eye
  • Double vision
  • Flashes of light
  • Seeing halos around lights
  • Unusual sensitivity to light or glare
  • Changes in color of iris
  • Sudden development of persisting floaters
These could be signs of a serious eye disease.