8 Eye Problems You Should Probably Check Out
QUICK READ | Which eye issues are serious?
- Never overlook serious eye discomfort or abrupt blurring of vision, both of which indicate a serious condition.
- A burning or gritty sensation in the eye is typically treatable at home.
- Redness and irritation may be caused by allergies, but get medical attention if you suspect pink eye.
- Serious issues include sudden eyelid drooping, floaters with flashes of light, and double vision.
- For primary eye care and prevention, see an ophthalmologist at least once before the age of 40.
It is all too easy to take your eyes for granted. They assist you to explore the world and require little upkeep on a daily basis. However, if one or both of your eyes start bothering you, it may become a huge distraction.
So, how can you know which eye problems are minor and which suggest major trouble?
Some eye issues, if left untreated, can worsen extremely quickly and permanently impair your eyesight.
You're probably fine if you acquired some brief eye redness after sleeping with your contacts, but other symptoms necessitate a visit to your optometrist. Here are some important symptoms to watch out for:
1. Your eyes have floaters.
Eye floaters are a common occurrence. They are caused by age-related changes in your vitreous, the gel-like substance that fills your eyeball.
Floaters in your vision, which can appear as specks, strings, or cobwebs that move as you move your eyes, are frequently caused by changes in the configuration of the gel within your eye caused by aging.
As you age, your vitreous gets more liquid and, as a result, might tug on your retina. A tear might occur if your retina is fragile.
If you notice a new set of floaters that differ from previous ones, especially if they are accompanied by flashes of light or obscured vision, you should see an ophthalmologist right away because you may have torn your retina.
It's still a good idea to undergo a dilated eye exam to make sure they're not an indication of something more serious, such as retinal detachment. This might be a result of trauma or just having a family history of retinal detachment. If you notice one or two floaters that go away, you should see your doctor, but if they persist, you should get them checked out right away.
2. You have red eyes all the time.
Remember how allergies, smoking in the air, and a lack of sleep can all induce a burning sensation? Those irritants can cause blood vessels in your eyes to enlarge and become more noticeable.
If your eye is red but feels normal and your eyesight is unaffected, either wait it out or use artificial tears to reduce the discomfort.
If one of your tiny blood vessels ruptures, a bright-red patch of blood on the eye might result.
When redness is accompanied by discomfort, burning, impaired vision, discharge, or any other new symptom, consult an ophthalmologist. Red eyes that do not clear up with over-the-counter drops may be a sign of dry eye syndrome, which occurs when tears are unable to provide adequate moisture to your eyes, or a variety of other conditions that should be evaluated.
Pink eye, a colloquial term for conjunctivitis, is a highly contagious infection that preschool parents all over the world fear. Pink eye is characterized by redness and inflammation of the membranes covering the eye and the inner surface of the eyelids, which is usually caused by a virus but can also be caused by bacteria.
When you sleep, your eyes frequently ache and have a sticky discharge. Pink eye is likely if you wake up unable to open your eye because it has crusted together.
It's always a good idea to consult your primary care physician or an ophthalmologist to confirm your suspicions. Although viral pink eye may go away on its own in a few days to a week, bacterial pink eye is treated with antibiotics. Though it is difficult to keep the pink eye from spreading, you should avoid rubbing or touching your eye. And, if and when you do, wash your hands with warm soap and water.
As a compress, use a clean washcloth washed in cold water to relieve crusting. Remember to use a fresh washcloth each time.
3. You have persistent dry eyes.
Over-the-counter artificial tears are your first line of defense against dry eyes. However, if artificial tears aren't working, consult your eye specialist. Your doctor may advise you to take an omega-3 fatty acid supplement, and if that doesn't work, he or she may insert punctal drain into the tear ducts and prescribe medicinal eye drops. If none of these measures help, you may have an ulcerated cornea, which occurs when the outermost layer of your eye gets inflamed. It should be treatable by your doctor with an antibiotic, antifungal, or antiviral drug.
4. Your eyes got a chemical in.
What do you do if you get dish soap in your eye? Even if your eye appears to be OK, immediately rinse it with water and consult your optometrist. If you are exposed to any foreign material, particularly a strong chemical or cleaning, you must seek emergency medical assistance. It has the potential to cause lifelong harm and scarring.
5. You have unexpected eye pain.
The most evident symptom that you should not ignore is eye pain. If you're merely going about your business and your eye begins to pain, that's cause for alarm.
If the eye pain is strong, abrupt, or lasts longer than a minute or two, consult an ophthalmologist straight soon.
While any form of persistent eye pain should be treated by a doctor, the type of pain you're feeling might indicate a variety of problems.
Sharp eye pain might indicate that you have something stuck in your eye or that you have a viral or bacterial eye infection.
Pain might be your eye's way of warning you of an infection or inflammation. Even if you think the pain is due to an eye injury, you should have it checked out.
It is not always possible easy for someone to assess the degree of their own eye injuries. Not only may the damage to your eye be an issue, but so can the following swelling, bleeding, or infection.
6. You see halo effects surrounding lights.
This may appear strange—and it is—but it might be a clue that your contact lens or glasses prescription is incorrect. It can also be a sign of an ocular migraine, which is a visual disturbance that affects your eyes. In any case, seek medical attention.
7. You've got a stye.
A stye is a painful local infection or inflammation of your eyelid's oil-producing glands. While a stye will usually go gone in a day or two, getting it looked out if you get them frequently or have a stye that won't go away. Your doctor may be able to give medication to prevent future styes.
8. You've developed a sudden sensitivity to light.
Feeling like you need to grab your shades to protect your eyes from the light streaming in your window could be a sign of an ocular migraine or an inflammation in your eye. In any case, consult your doctor.
Eye care and prevention
Even if you've never had symptoms like these, don't ignore the need for basic eye care. The American Academy of Ophthalmology advises having a routine eye examination by an ophthalmologist by the age of 40. You should have an eye checkup every two to four years if you are above the age of 40.
If you have diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, or any other medical condition, you should see an ophthalmologist more regularly. An ophthalmologist can determine the health of your eyes and the quality of your vision, as well as any health issues that manifest themselves in your eyes.
As the saying goes, "Your eyes are a window to your soul." What most people don't realize is that they're also a window into your overall health.
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