COMMON EYE ILLNESSES
Diseases and disorders of the eye have the potential to reduce your quality of life seriously, and because many of them have no initial symptoms, you may not be aware of them until the disease has become advanced. Early testing is essential, particularly when it comes to conditions with a genetic component such as age-related macular degeneration and glaucoma. Ask your optometrist to perform testing for the following common eye diseases if you have reason to believe you may be at risk.
Dry eye occurs when the tear duct production stops or significantly slows down. This condition is sometimes a symptom of something else such as diabetes, lupus, or thyroid dysfunction. It can also be the result of atmospheric conditions, aging, certain medications, or physical damage to the tear ducts themselves.
Glaucoma affects the optic nerve of the eye and can lead to severe vision loss and even blindness if left undiagnosed and untreated. Be sure to let your optometrist know if you have a family history of glaucoma. Those over 60 are also at elevated risk as well as African and Mexican Americans.
More than 10 million Americans currently suffer from some form of macular degeneration, making it the leading cause of vision loss and blindness in the country. Unfortunately, it’s also considered incurable at this point, which makes early detection even more important. Risk factors include age and genetics, and smoking.
One of the leading causes of vision loss in those over the age of 40, cataracts cause the ocular lens to become progressively clouded. Several types of treatment are available, including outpatient surgery.
Pink eye is a highly contagious infection that is generally passed among school children, although adults can also be affected — particularly those such as teachers or daycare workers. This condition is easily treated, and leaving it untreated can result in severe damage to the eyes.
COMMON EYE INJURY ISSUES
Anyone can experience minor eye irritation from a random speck of dust, allergen, infection, or temporary dryness. These situations may subside on their own or they may benefit from routine care at our clinic. An eye injury, however, often poses a more immediate threat to your ocular well-being. Damage to the affected eye may grow progressively more severe the longer you go without treatment, with some types of injuries potentially causing permanent vision loss. Common kinds of eye injuries include:
A scratched eye may result from even the smallest particles scraping against the tissues of the sclera or cornea. If the cause goes untreated, corneal scratches may form scar tissue that interferes with normal vision.
Objects thrown from machinery or blown by strong winds may actually embed themselves in the eye. These objects not only cause severe pain and acute vision problems, but they also open the door to dangerous infections.
If your workaround corrosive chemicals, it’s possible for these chemicals to damage your eyes. Acids, alkaline substances, and neutral-pH irritants can all have immediate, devastating effects.
A blunt impact to the eye can cause obvious, acute injury, not just to the eye itself but also to the bones and tissues surrounding it. In addition to the proverbial “black eye,” you may also experience bleeding in the eye or inflammation of the iris.