It is imperative to have regular eye exams depending on one’s age, the risk of eye disease, and overall health. Early diagnosis of eye problems can help avoid blindness as rarely do the signs clear up on their own. The following are the most common eye diseases.
Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD)
It is the gradual damage to the macula cells which may lead to loss of central vision. Macula allows a person to see the fine details. Wet AMD is when abnormal blood vessels grow behind the retina causing blood and fluid to leak in the eye. Dry AMD involves the gradual breaking down of the light-sensitive cells in the macula leading to diminished central vision.
It is a painless eye disease that causes blurry vision due to clouding of the lens. It can be caused by excessive UV light exposure, trauma, age, medication, and diabetes among others. It continually gets worse if it is not treated. Cataracts treatments include laser surgery.
There are different refractive errors that are corrected by lenses, surgery, and glasses. Astigmatism is an error caused by an irregular-shaped cornea. An affected person sees blurry images. Nearsightedness (Myopia) occurs when the cornea has too much curvature. A patient can only focus on what is near. Farsightedness (hyperopia) is caused by a flat cornea that distracts light from focusing on the retina.
It is a disease that affects those with diabetes and it damages the retina due to higher than usual blood sugar levels. The nonproliferative diabetic retinopathy occurs when there is leaking of blood in the retina. Proliferative diabetic retinopathy is the growth of abnormal vessels that bleed to the vitreous. It can lead to retinal detachment and hence irreversible vision loss.
It rarely shows symptoms and it occurs when there is excess intraocular pressure within the eye. Too much pressure lead to the damage to the optic nerve. Glaucoma can either be painless (open angle) and painful and redness of the eye (angle-closure). Early detection and treatment are critical to avoid permanent damages. Treatment involves laser treatment, surgery, and eye drops.
Other common eye diseases include:
- Eye Allergies
- Retinal Detachment
It is wise to visit an ophthalmologist when one notices any eye disease symptoms. However, since most of the diseases do not have symptoms, embrace routine checkups.