We are continuing our eye diseases series with part III. If you missed the first two parts about refractive errors and some other eye disorders, we highly recommend you give it a read as well. As we mentioned in our last articles according the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC),” More than 4.2 million Americans aged 40 years and older are either legally blind (having best-corrected visual acuity of 6/60 or worse (=20/200) in the better-seeing eye) or are with low vision (having best-corrected visual acuity less than 6/12 (<20/40) in the better-seeing eye, excluding those who were categorized as being blind).” That’s why we find it important to talk about all these disorders.
Today we are going to talk about quite a few eye disorders. The first one we are going to discuss in detail is “Uveitis”.
This is the name for a group of diseases that cause inflammation of the uvea. That’s the middle layer of the eye that contains most of the blood vessels.
These diseases can destroy eye tissue, and even cause eye loss. People of all ages can have it. Symptoms may go away quickly or last for a long time.
People with immune system conditions like AIDS, rheumatoid arthritis, or ulcerative colitis may be more likely to have uveitis. Symptoms may include:
- Blurred vision
- Eye pain
- Eye redness
- Light sensitivity
See your doctor if you have these symptoms and they don’t go away within a few days. There are different kinds of treatment for uveitis, depending on the type you have.
Presbyopia happens when someone loses the ability, despite good distance vision, to clearly see close objects and small print.
After age 40 or so, one may have to hold a book or other reading material farther away from your eyes to make it easier to read. Sort of like your arms are too short.
To restore your vision some of the following can be done for example using reading glasses, contact lenses, LASIK, which is laser eye surgery, and other procedures can be used to restore good reading vision.
People see tiny spots or specks that float across your field of vision. They are usually noticeable in well-lit rooms or outdoors on a bright day.
Floaters are usually normal, but they sometimes can be a sign of a more serious eye problem, like retinal detachment. That’s when the retina at the back of your eye separates from the layer underneath. When this happens, you might also see light flashes along with the floaters or a dark shadow come across the edge of your sight.
If you notice a sudden change in the type or number of spots or flashes you see or a new dark “curtain” in your peripheral vision, go to your eye doctor as soon as possible.
When your eyes can’t make enough good-quality tears you get dry eyes. This may give you burns in the eyes. You feel a burning sensation in eyes. In severe cases although rare, extreme dryness can lead to some loss of vision too. Following are some of the treatments for dry eyes:
- Using a humidifier in your home
- Special eye drops that work like real tears
- Plugs in your tear ducts to lessen drainage
- Lipiflow, a procedure that uses heat and pressure to treat dry eyes
- Testosterone eyelid cream
- Nutritional supplements with fish oil and omega-3
If you are suffering from chronic eye dryness this means you have dry eye disease. You should consult doctors as soon as possible. The doctor may prescribe you medicated drops like cyclosporine (Cequa, Restasis) or lifitegrast (Xiidra) to stimulate tear production.
This is exactly opposite to having dry eyes. If you tear up easily it has nothing to do with your feelings. It means that your eyes might be sensitive to light, wind, heat or temperature changes. Try to protect your eyes by shielding them or wearing sunglasses (go for wraparound frames – they block more wind than other types).
Tearing may also signal a more serious problem, like an eye infection or a blocked tear duct. Your eye doctor can treat or correct both of these conditions.
Sometimes eyes may develop cloudy areas in them. It is called having cataracts. All of our eyes have lens in them and they are very clear that help us see perfectly when light passes through it to your retina – the back of your eye where images are processed. When you have a cataract, light can’t get through as easily. The result: You can’t see as well and may notice glare or a halo around lights at night.
Cataracts often form slowly. They don’t cause symptoms like pain, redness, or tearing in the eye.
Some stay small and don’t affect your sight. If they do progress and affect your vision, surgery almost always works to bring it back.
If you are facing any health-related issues or need any assistance you can always contact Kandakacare. Our professional healthcare workers are fully qualified to assist you at home without risking your health.
We publish new and useful articles every week containing highly useful information about elderly and how to make their lives easier and healthier. If you have an elderly person at home, we advise you to follow our weekly articles on our Kandakacare page and share with your friends.