Eye problems can strike at any age, with or without warning. Certain medical conditions can increase your risk of developing eye problems, but even healthy people are at risk for vision problems as they age. These warning signs should prompt you to schedule an immediate eye exam.
Increase in Floaters
“Floaters” are a normal occurrence caused by tiny particles of debris in the eye, passing through light. An increase in the quantity of floaters is a warning sign of a detached retina, requiring prompt attention.
Physical Eye Changes
White or cloudy spots over the pupil of your eye are one sign of a cataract. Surgical correction replaces the clouded lens with clear material, and may also improve your overall vision. Staying current with your eye exam schedule will help identify cataracts at an early stage.
Glare or Halo
Glare or halos can around light sources can make nighttime driving miserable. Cataracts could be the cause, but a rainbow colored halo can indicate glaucoma, where increased eye pressure affects the optic nerve and can cause blindness.
Peripheral Vision Changes
The narrowing of your field of vision can happen so gradually that you may not even notice. Glaucoma is one common cause of this problem, but a concussion sometimes presents this symptom. Ischemia, or “eye strokes,” and detached retina can have this effect to some degree as well.
Sudden Vision Loss
This can be a frightening situation, and a serious one. Diabetic retinopathy, in which the blood vessels of the retina are damaged by the effects of the disease can permanently steal your vision. Ischemia is another culprit of this problem.
Intense eye pain can mean the onset of Sudden Acute Glaucoma. During an attack, eye pressure rises suddenly and causes damage to the optic nerve that can result in permanent blindness. This is an emergency condition that requires immediately treatment.
Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD) can cause colors to appear dull and faded and cataracts may cause you to see colors with less distinction. Early detection is the best way to manage AMD, since it can be untreatable, and cataracts can be corrected with surgery.
Your vision is precious and irreplaceable. A regular eye exam can help identify many eye problems before they progress into loss of sight. Contact your eyecare specialist any time you notice unusual symptoms, and don’t miss your yearly appointment.