Our Insights, Your Vision
Traditional Chinese Medicine and Your Vision Health
In Western or “allopathic” medicine, the focus is on treating symptoms as they arise. When treatments that target an afflicted area are unsuccessful, there may be no other Western treatment options available. In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), however, all parts of the body are viewed as connected. Treating one area of the body can affect other areas, and when the whole body is in balance, each part thrives.
For these reasons, TCM practitioners have many options available for treating your vision health, even if you’ve been told that surgery or expensive medications are your only remaining options—or that you don’t have any options left at all.
Dana Rogers specializes in the treatment of vision health through acupuncture. She uses her advanced training to help people improve and maintain their sight after they have been diagnosed with such conditions as glaucoma, macular degeneration, retinitis pigmentosa, floaters, rod-cone dystrophy, angioid streaks, Usher syndrome, diabetic retinopathy, and Stargardt’s disease.
Dana Rogers specializes in Eastern approaches to optimal vision health.
This disease affects the center of the retina—known as the macula—and results in the loss of central vision. Whether age-related or genetic, macular degeneration is the leading cause of the loss of vision today. Western medicine currently offers no cures for macular degeneration. At Insight Health Center, Dana uses acupuncture to help slow the progression of vision loss and help you retain the ability to read, drive, and recognize details and colors as long as possible.
A form of macular degeneration, this disease afflicts young people who have inherited the condition through recessive genes. This disease causes photoreceptors in the center of the retina to disintegrate, resulting in the loss of central vision. As they age, sufferers may also lose peripheral vision and the ability to detect color. Dana’s treatments focus on keeping your retina as healthy as possible over time.
This condition is usually asymptomatic but is easy to detect with an eye examination. It manifests as streaks across the retina that are the result of a breakdown of the flexible tissues within the eye. Western treatment options have been limited, but Eastern techniques have been used by TCM practitioners in an effort to manage macular health for the long term.
In the eye, rods and cones are photoreceptor cells that help us to process visual stimuli. Those who are born with conditions that affect the rods may first experience symptoms when they are children as their peripheral vision deteriorates. Then their night vision is lost, and their ability to perceive black-and-white objects in motion becomes more difficult. Cone dystrophy, on the other hand, affects the ability to view still objects, colors, and fine details. A variety of conditions fall under the label of “rod-cone” or “cone-rod” dystrophy, including retinitis pigmentosa (RP). Although these genetic conditions are incurable, acupuncture may be beneficial for addressing your eyes’ essential nerve health.
Retinitis Pigmentosa (RP) affects approximately 100,000 people in the United States. It is an inherited condition that is often diagnosed in young adults who begin to lose peripheral vision and, eventually, the ability to perceive colors and details, especially at night. Some sufferers become legally blind sometime around the age of 40. Few treatment options are available in Western medicine for RP and related conditions such as Usher syndrome, which affects both sight and hearing.
There are two types of glaucoma: “open-angle” and “closed-angle,” which is also known as “narrow-angle” glaucoma. Both cause the optic nerve to become damaged when fluid within the eye fails to drain as it should, resulting in increased pressure. Holistic treatments for this chronic condition can be used to care for your eyes’ proper internal balance.
Elevated blood-sugar levels can damage blood vessels within the eye. When this occurs, the eye can bleed internally, which can damage the retina. Diabetic retinopathy is among the leading causes of blindness in American adults. Acupuncture, nutrition counseling, and other therapies can be used both in the management of diabetes before vision health is at risk and in the treatment of diabetic retinopathy.
Floaters are relatively common, especially in adults, and may be an indication of larger health concerns, such as anemia. Floaters appear as transparent cell-like shapes that may be visible when looking at something that is bright or light in color. They may seem to move as the eye moves, never quite staying in one place. In most cases, floaters are not dangerous to the overall health of the eye unless they begin to affect vision or if they appear suddenly but were not visible before. Because floaters are suspended in the eye’s internal fluids, acupuncture and herbal treatments can be used to promote good circulation and fluid balance within the eye.
Let Dana help you on the path to better health. Schedule your appointment today.