While medications are intended to treat an illness or medical condition, there is always the possibility side-effects may occur. In some instances, medications affect your vision. Here are a few things to be aware of about taking medication and possible side effect to your vision.
Signs that Your Medication is Affecting Your Vision
Side-effects from your medication(s) can range from a mild irritation to a serious problem leading to vision loss. Common side-effects include:
- Dry, itchy, irritated eyes
- Watery eyes
- Blurry eyes
- Double vision
- Difficulty focusing
- Light sensitivity
- Eye pain
- Optic nerve damage
If you experience these problems after taking a new prescription speak to your doctor as soon as possible. It is also possible that you might not notice any side-effects from your medications right away. It could take months or years of long-term use before vision problems present themselves. Telling your eye doctor what medications you take can alert him or her to examine your eyes more often to catch vision changes sooner than later.
You should call your doctor immediately if you experience sudden, severe eye pain with nausea. This could be a sign of a serious type of glaucoma that can quickly cause blindness if not quickly treated.
Common Medications that Cause Vision Problems
Some of the most commonly used medications that cause vision problems include:
- Alpha and beta-blockers
- Antidepressant and anti-anxiety medications
- Birth control pills
- Cholesterol-lowering drugs
- Erectile dysfunction medications
- Heart disease drugs
- Osteoporosis medications
- Seizure medications
- Stomach medications
If you take any of these medications, watch for changes in your vision or eye health.
Talk to Your Eye Doctor
When beginning a new medication, make sure to read the label to understand what its possible side effects are. If you notice any sudden changes to your vision, do not wait until your yearly eye exam to mention it to your eye doctor. Instead, schedule an appointment as soon as possible. Remember, new medications may not be a culprit behind sudden or gradual changes in your eye health, too.
Even though you might not notice any changes to your vision, remember to tell your eye doctor about all the medications you take when you go for your yearly eye exam. In some cases, your doctor may want to monitor your vision more closely, especially if you take medications that commonly cause eye problems.
Protect your vision by scheduling your next eye exam with Valley Eyecare Center. Call us at (602) 955-2700 or request an appointment online.