Numerous different eye diseases and eyesight issues exist. While many others can be treated and some have no known cure. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle and visiting your eye doctor frequently and if your vision changes will help you take care of your own eyes.
Common eye diseases conditions
The Centres for Disease Control and Prevention estimate that more than 3.4 million Americans aged 40 and older have eyesight that is either corrected or meets the criteria for “legal blindness.” Nearly 7% of American children under the age of 18 have an eye ailment or disease that has been identified. Almost 3% of youngsters under the age of 18 have vision impairment or are blind. Loss of vision is one of the most prevalent disabilities in children and one of the top ten causes of impairment in adults over the age of 18 in the United States.
The good news is that it’s never too late to begin caring for eye health. Early diagnosis is possible with routine eye exams and visits for eye health. The majority of eye diseases can be slowed down or corrected by doing this. If your vision problem persists for more than a few days or gets worse, you should always visit an eye care specialist.
Most common eye diseases
The four most typical eye conditions that result in vision loss or blindness are as follows:
- Retinal damage caused by diabetes.
- Macular aging and degeneration.
However, there are a huge variety of eye conditions and illnesses.
A cataract is a hazy spot in your eye’s lens. As you age, cataracts become more and more common. In actuality, more than half of all Americans 80 years of age and older either have cataracts or have undergone cataract surgery.
The presence of a cataract may not be apparent at first. Eyesight may become foggy, dim, or less colorful as a result of cataracts over time. Reading and other commonplace tasks might become difficult.
The good news is that cataracts can be removed surgically. The safe procedure of cataract surgery fixes any eyesight disease brought on by cataracts.
Types of cataracts
Most cataracts are age-related; they develop as a result of your eyes’ natural aging processes. However, there are other circumstances in which cataracts can develop, such as after an eye injury or following treatment for another eye disease (like glaucoma).
Symptoms of cataracts
The presence of a cataract may not be apparent at first. But when cataracts progress, abnormalities in vision may occur. For example:
1. Vision becomes hazy or fuzzy
2. Colors appear faded.
3. Partial or complete blindness in night
4. Headlights, lamps, and the sun all seem to be too bright.
5. Lights have haloes surrounding them.
6. prescriptions for glasses are frequently changed.
More than 90% of patients report seeing better after having their hazy lens surgically removed and replaced with an artificial lens.
Cataracts can potentially cause vision loss.
Risk for cataracts
Age increases your risk of developing cataracts. Furthermore, you run a larger risk if you:
1. Having certain health problems, like diabetes
3. Excessive alcohol consumption
4. Genetic history of cataracts
5. had a lot of sun exposure
6. usage of steroids (medicines used to treat a variety of health problems, like arthritis and rashes)
Causes of cataracts
The majority of cataracts are brought on by age-related changes that are natural for your eyes.
The lens in your eye is clear while you’re young. Your eye’s lens begins to deteriorate and clump at the age of 40 due to protein breakdown. The result of this clump is a cataract, which is a clouded spot on your lens. The lens becomes progressively clouded over time as the cataract worsens.
Retinal damage by diabetes
People with diabetes may develop diabetic retinopathy, an eye disorder that can lead to blindness and vision loss. It impacts the retina’s blood vessels (the light-sensitive layer of tissue in the back of your eye).
A full dilated eye exam is crucial for diabetics at least once a year. Although diabetic retinopathy may not initially present with any symptoms, detecting it early might help you take precautions to save your eyesight.
Maintaining a healthy weight, eating well, and taking medication while managing diabetes can also help stop or delay vision loss.
Symptoms of diabetic retinopathy
There are typically no symptoms in the early stages of diabetic retinopathy. Some patients experience vision changes, such as difficulty reading or seeing objects in the distance. These adjustments could come and go.
Blood vessels in the retina begin to bleed into the vitreous in later stages of the disease (gel-like fluid that fills your eye). If this occurs, you might notice cobweb-like black, floaty areas or streaks. The spots may occasionally go away on their own, but it’s still crucial to seek medical attention right soon. Without medical attention, the bleeding may resume, worsen, or result in scarring.
Risk for diabetic retinopathy
Diabetic retinopathy can affect persons with any kind of diabetes, including type 1, type 2, and gestational diabetes (a type of diabetes that can develop during pregnancy).
Risk increases with diabetes duration. Over time, diabetic retinopathy will affect more than half of those who have the disease. The good news is that managing diabetes can reduce the risk of developing diabetic retinopathy.
Diabetes-afflicted women who get pregnant or develop gestational diabetes are at a higher risk of developing diabetic retinopathy. Have a thorough dilated eye exam right away if you have diabetes and are expecting. If you think you’ll need more eye exams while you’re pregnant, ask your doctor.
Also Read :- Hyaluronic Acid and its anti-ageing benefits
Causes of diabetic retinopathy
Diabetes-related elevated blood sugar results in diabetic retinopathy. The portion of your retina that detects light and transmits messages to your brain via a nerve in the back of your eye might become damaged over time if there is too much sugar in your blood (optic nerve).
All over the body, blood arteries are harmed by diabetes. When sugar obstructs the minuscule blood arteries leading to your retina, it damages your eyes by causing them to haemorrhage or leak fluid. Your eyes then develop new, poorly functioning blood vessels to make up for these blocked blood vessels. These brand-new blood vessels frequently bleed or leak.
A collection of eye disease known as glaucoma can result in vision loss and blindness by harming the optic nerve, a nerve located in the back of the eye.
There are not any symptoms at first because they can appear gradually. A thorough dilated eye exam is the only way to determine glaucoma.
Although there is no known cure for glaucoma, early detection and treatment can frequently reverse vision loss.
Types of glaucoma
There are several distinct varieties of glaucoma, but open-angle glaucoma is the most prevalent one in the US and is what most people refer to when they discuss glaucoma. Angle-closure glaucoma and congenital glaucoma are two less typical varieties.
Symptoms of glaucoma
Glaucoma typically has no initial symptoms. Because of this, 50 percent of glaucoma patients are completely unaware of their condition.
Peripheral (side) vision, especially the area nearest to nose, may gradually diminish with time. This is the case for most people. Many people first are unable to notice a change in their vision because it comes so gradually.
However, when the illness worsens, peripheral vision starts to diminish. Glaucoma can eventually result in blindness if it is not treated.
Causes of glaucoma
Many glaucoma patients have high eye pressure, and treatments that lower eye pressure tend to halt the disease. However, scientists are unsure of what causes the most prevalent varieties of glaucoma.
Macular degeneration (AMD)
An eye condition called age-related macular degeneration (AMD) can cause central vision to become blurry. It occurs when the macula, the area of the eye that regulates precise, straight-ahead vision, suffers damage with age. The retina includes the macula (the light-sensitive tissue at the back of the eye).
AMD is a prevalent disorder and the main reason why older persons lose their vision. Although AMD doesn’t result in total blindness, losing your central vision might make it more difficult to read, drive, or perform close-up tasks like cooking or home maintenance.
AMD develops extremely slowly in some people and quickly in others. If AMD is present at an early stage, the visual loss could not be seen for some time. For this reason, it’s crucial to have routine eye exams to determine.
Types and stages of AMD
There are 2 types of AMD: dry and wet.
Most AMD patients have dry AMD (also called atrophic AMD). At this point in life, the macula begins to thin. Early, intermediate, and late stages of dry AMD all occur together. Typically, it develops gradually over a number of years. Late dry AMD has no known cure, however there are techniques to maximise your remaining vision. You can also take precautions to safeguard your other eye if you only have late dry AMD in one of your eyes.
Wet AMD is a less frequent form of late AMD that typically results in rapid visual loss (also known as advanced neovascular AMD). Wet AMD can develop at any stage of dry AMD, however wet AMD is always late stage. The macula is harmed when aberrant blood vessels develop behind the eye. The good news is that there are wet AMD treatment options available.
Symptoms of AMD
The stages of AMD affect the symptoms. Early, intermediate, and late stages of dry AMD all occur together. Since AMD is a degenerative condition, symptoms typically worsen over time.
1. Early-stage dry AMD has no symptoms.
2. Some patients with intermediate dry AMD are remain symptomless. Others may experience minor symptoms, such as slight central vision blurriness or difficulty seeing in dim lights.
3. Many people observe that straight lines start to appear wavy or curved in late AMD (wet or dry type). There can also be a hazy spot right in the middle of your field of vision. This hazy area might expand with time, or you might notice blank spaces. Additionally, colors might seem less vibrant than usual, and dim lighting might make it harder for you to see.
Most common eye disease in children
1. Amblyopia: Amblyopia, often known as “lazy eye,” occurs when one eye and the brain of your child don’t work together properly and the brain prioritizes the other eye, which has greater vision. Their non-favored eye’s eyesight will be decreased. This is the most frequent reason for eye disease in kids.
2. Strabismus: When your child’s eyes are not coordinated, it might result in strabismus, which can cause the eyes to turn out or cross. Your child’s eyes do not lock onto a single image at once. This may result in diminished 3D vision or the brain may prefer one eye over the other, which may result in a visual loss in the non-favored eye.
3. Conjunctivitis: Conjunctivitis, sometimes referred to as pink eye, is an inflammation of the transparent tissue that covers the outside of your eye and the inside surface of your eyelid. We refer to this tissue as conjunctiva. Your eyelid and eyeball stay moisturized thanks to it. Pink eye can spread quickly, especially among young infants. It causes itchy, red, hazy, tearing, and discharge but doesn’t harm eyesight.
Having a clear vision makes it easier to interact with the environment. Some visual issues are simple to fix. Others are incurable. However, many eye illnesses can be cured or the disease process slowed down if caught early enough to prevent further vision loss. Consult an eye care specialist if detect any changes in vision. It’s crucial to undergo routine eye exams even if you don’t notice any changes in vision. Some eyesight issues don’t have any early symptoms. To prevent or reduce vision loss, an eye care specialist can perform the necessary tests, prescribe eyewear, and drugs, or perform surgery.