How Macular Society can help to support AMD patients
In light of our recent partnership, we’d like to make you aware of the amazing work that our recent charity partner, the Macular Society does for patients living with macular disease.
Macular disease is the biggest cause of sight loss in the UK, with around 300 people diagnosed every day. It can affect people of any age — even children.
RNIB estimate that over 4 million people in the UK are living with signs of macular disease, approximately 700,000 of those are experiencing some sort of sight loss, and unfortunately, numbers are rising. It’s estimated that the number of people with late AMD will increase by 25% by 2032.
Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is the most common type of macular disease generally affecting people over the age of 55.
Macular disease steals your sight and those living with the condition often struggle to read, drive, watch TV or recognise the faces of their loved ones.
But, despite the devastating impact it has on people’s lives, little is known about what causes macular disease and there is still no cure.
The Macular Society supports everyone in their journey with macular disease and provides a range of support services to help those affected, and their families. This includes the Society’s specialist Advice and Information Service, which provides free information, guidance and advice to anyone affected by central vision loss, whether it’s you, a friend or a family member.
The organisation also provides a range of peer support. These services are:
Peer support groups
The Macular Society peer support groups are available both in person and over the telephone. The network of support groups provide information and support to those with macular disease, along with their family and friends. They are open to all ages and a great place to develop friendships, increase confidence, and raise awareness and understanding of macular disease.
For anyone unable to attend a group, or who needs additional support, the Macular Society’s befriending service can provide a regular phone call to help rebuild confidence and independence. The service is run entirely by volunteers who offer a friendly listening ear and often have their own personal experience of macular disease.
Finding out that you may lose much of your central vision, and adapting to changes in your vision, can be very difficult to comprehend. After diagnosis many people struggle to cope with their emotions and can feel shocked, afraid or isolated.
It can help to speak to a professional counsellor, who is trained to listen and to talk through your feelings and help you find ways of dealing with them.
Skills for Seeing
The Society’s Skills for Seeing service offers one-to-one advice on how to make best use of the vision people with macular disease have, so they can continue doing the things you love.
As the macula changes, some parts will be more effective than others. Our trained volunteers help those affected find the point of best vision and how to use it.
For more information about the Society’s work or to seek support visit www.macularsociety.org or contact the Advice and Information Service on 0300 3030 111.