Farsightedness (hyperopia) is a common vision condition in which you can see distant objects clearly, but objects nearby may be blurry. The degree of your farsightedness determines your focusing ability. People with severe farsightedness may see nearby objects less clearly than distant objects, while those with mild farsightedness may be able to clearly see objects that are somewhat closer.
Farsightedness is usually present at birth and tends to run in families. You can easily correct this condition with eyeglasses or contact lenses.
What Are the Symptoms of Astigmatism?
People with undetected astigmatism often experience headaches, fatigue, eyestrain, and blurred vision at all distances. While these symptoms may not necessarily be the result of astigmatism, you should schedule an eye exam if you are experiencing one or more symptoms.
How is Astigmatism Diagnosed?
Your optometrist can diagnose astigmatism with a thorough eye exam. Astigmatism may occur with other refractive errors such as myopia (nearsightedness) and hyperopia (farsightedness). Unfortunately, astigmatism often goes undetected in school-age children.
Because astigmatisms may increase slowly, you should visit your optometrist regularly. Optometrists are trained specifically to examine the general health of the eyes and prescribe eyeglasses and contact lenses.
The gradual loss of your eyes’ ability to focus actively on nearby objects is a not-so-subtle reminder that you have reached middle age. A natural, often annoying part of aging, presbyopia usually becomes noticeable in your early to mid-40s and continues to worsen until around age 60.
You may become aware of presbyopia when you start holding books and newspapers at arm’s length to be able to read them. If you’re nearsighted, you might temporarily manage presbyopia by reading without your glasses.
A basic eye exam can confirm presbyopia. You can correct the condition with nonprescription reading glasses or prescription eyeglasses or contact lenses.
A cataract is a clouding of the normally clear lens of your eye. For people who have cataracts, seeing through cloudy lenses is a bit like looking through a frosty or fogged-up window. Clouded vision caused by cataracts can make it more difficult to read, drive a car, especially at night, or see the expression on a friend’s face.
Most cataracts develop slowly and do not disturb your eyesight early on. But with time, cataracts will eventually interfere with your vision.
At first, stronger lighting and eyeglasses can help you deal with cataracts. But if impaired vision interferes with your usual activities, you might need cataract surgery. Fortunately, cataract surgery is a quick, painless, safe and effective procedure.
What is wet age-related macular degeneration?
Wet age-related macular degeneration occurs when abnormal blood vessels begin to grow underneath the retina. These new blood vessels (known as choroidal neovascularization or CNV) tend to be very fragile and often leak blood and fluid. The blood and fluid raise the macula from its normal place at the back of the eye and interfere with the retina’s function and causes the central vision to blur. Under these circumstances, vision loss may be rapid and severe. Some patients, however, do not notice visual changes despite the onset of CNV. Therefore, periodic eye examinations are very important for patients at risk for CNV. Once CNV has developed in one eye, whether there is a visual loss or not, the other eye is at relatively high risk for the same change.
What are risk factors for macular degeneration?
The greatest risk factor is age. Although AMD may occur during middle age, studies show that people over age 60 are clearly at greater risk than other age groups.
What are the symptoms of macular degeneration?
Neither dry nor wet AMD cause any eye pain. The most common early symptom in dry AMD is blurred vision or a distraction in the central vision. Dry macular degeneration symptoms usually develop gradually and do not include total blindness. However, the symptoms may worsen the quality of life by making reading, driving, and facial recognition difficult. Other symptoms may include decreased night vision, a decrease in the intensity or brightness of colors, increase in the haziness of overall vision. All of the above symptoms may also be noticed in the wet form of AMD. In addition, the most common symptom in wet macular degeneration is straight lines appearing crooked or wavy.
What is the treatment for wet macular degeneration?
Wet AMD can be treated with laser surgery, photodynamic therapy, and injections into the eye. None of these treatments is a permanent cure for wet AMD. The disease and loss of vision may continue to grow despite treatment.
What is the treatment for dry macular degeneration?
There is currently no treatment available to reverse dry macular degeneration. However, dry macular degeneration usually develops at a slower pace and most patients with this condition are able to live relatively normal, productive lives. Often one eye is affected more than the other. Often times nutritional supplements or vitamins are recommended to hopefully slow the progression of AMD.