Take Good Care of Your Eyes
To prevent or reduce vision problems, it is important to visit your eye doctor regularly.
Blurred vision, halos and blind spots are all common eye problems. Blurred vision is a loss of sharpness in vision and the inability to see small details. Scotomas are dark areas in the visual field that cannot be seen. Floaters are tiny bits of protein and other material that can drift in the clear, gel-like eye. These problems could be caused by damage to the eye, a medical condition, or an illness.
People with vision problems often wait too long to have an eye exam. An eye doctor should be consulted if you notice any changes in your vision. Only an eye doctor can diagnose serious vision problems such as glaucoma and diabetic retinopathy early enough to treat.
These are the major categories of eye care providers.
- Opticians. They provide contacts and glasses based on a doctor’s prescription. They do not diagnose or treat eye conditions.
- Optometrists. They perform vision screenings, eye exams, diagnose and treat eye disease. They can prescribe prescriptions for eye diseases and glasses.
- Ophthalmologists. They are doctors who diagnose and treat eye diseases, perform eye surgery and offer routine vision care services such as prescription glasses and contact lenses to correct vision.
- Primary Care providers. Sometimes, an eye problem can be caused by a general medical condition. Your primary care provider should be involved in these cases.
Watch out for these symptoms.
Even if the symptoms are only temporary, they indicate that you need to see an eye doctor immediately.
- An emergency is a red, painless or severe eye infection.
- Partial or complete vision loss in either one or both eyes
- Double vision
- Blind spots, halos around light sources, and areas with distorted vision are all possible.
- Feel like a shade or curtain is being drawn across your vision.
- A fracture of the eye or bone surrounding it
- Is trouble seeing objects in your visual field?
- It’s difficult to tell the difference between two colours when they appear suddenly.
These symptoms signify that you need to see an eye doctor soon.
- Reading or trouble to see at night?
- Sharper objects
- Blurring objects far away or close to each other
- Eye irritations or fluids
According to the American Optometric Association, everyone should have a dilated examination every year and an annual dilated examination after age 60. These essential steps can be taken in between routine visits to maintain or improve your sight:
- Consume at least five servings of fruits and veggies each day.
- Don’t smoke.
- Regular breaks are necessary when working on computer programs or other tasks that require your eyes.
- Keep your glasses on. Although it sounds obvious, many people with low-to-moderate vision loss forget to wear their glasses or leave them home.
- Sunglasses are essential for protecting your eyes from the harmful UVA and UVB rays outdoors. Even on cloudy days, you can still wear them
- Follow the recommended schedule when cleaning and using contact lenses.
- Please get to know your family’s eye history, and share it with your healthcare providers.
- High blood pressure, high cholesterol or diabetes should be controlled.
What should you do?
According to the AOA, specific vision problems may be helped by specific solutions.
- Bright light can increase your sensitivity. Sunglasses that block visible light should block 75% to 90%. Sunglasses that block ultraviolet A and B radiation at 99% to 100% can protect you from cataracts. Make sure to choose sunglasses that block blue wavelengths. Avoid wearing dark glasses indoors or at night. This can cause your eyes to become more sensitive over time.
- Itchy, burning or red eyes. Dry eye syndromes can occur after 50. Artificial tears can be helpful for dry eyes. Switching to daily or disposable lenses can help allergy sufferers. Contact lens wearers and those over 50 who have these symptoms should see an eye doctor for appropriate treatment.
- Problems with glare. If nighttime headlight glare is an ongoing problem or if you work in visually demanding situations, ask your eye care professional about antireflection-coated lenses. These lenses can reduce reflections and glare at all times of the day. For older adults, an increase in glare could signify developing cataracts. This is why it is important to have an eye exam.
- Older eyes may experience reduced vision. A new prescription for eyeglasses is helpful. You can also place more lamps inside the house and use task lighting. High-output fluorescent bulbs will increase light output and decrease energy consumption. Indirect lighting can reduce glare.
- Troubles with new glasses. Contact your eye doctor if you have continued blurred vision, double vision or other problems after wearing the new lenses for a few days. You may need to adjust the prescription or frame to fix the problem.
- Annoying spots right in front of your eyes. The appearance of spots or floating is normal and harmless as part of ageing. However, flashes or “floaters” may indicate something more serious such as diabetic retinopathy, early-stage retinal detachment, or diabetes. If you experience any of these symptoms, contact your eye doctor immediately.