The Age-Related Eye Disease Study (ongoing) has found that a combination of high-dose beta-carotene, vitamin C, vitamin E, and zinc can reduce the risk of developing AMD by about 25 percent in people who have early but significant forms of the disease. People at risk for AMD might also be able to prevent progression of the disease by eating a diet rich in leafy green vegetables; avoiding bright sunlight by wearing a wide-brimmed hat and wrap-around sunglasses that protect against ultraviolet (UV) rays and blue light; avoiding smoking; and seeing a physician promptly if vision problems begin to develop.
Macular degeneration, by itself, does not lead to complete vision loss, because peripheral vision is left untouched. Many people with this disease are able to live independent and productive lives. A wide variety of visual aids are available, such as magnifiers, bioptic glasses, closed-circuit television readers, and specialized screen-reading computer software such as JAWS for Windows. Education is important for people who experience vision loss, because it can help them become well-informed consumers of therapies and services.