Warning Signs for Eye Disease

Warning Signs for Eye Disease

Optimal eye health is important for lasting vision. Eye diseases can slowly develop into serious health issues unless you recognize the warning signs. Some warning signs indicate you should consult an eye care professional.

Vision Changes

Sudden vision changes are a main indicator of developing eye disease. Sudden changes differ from a gradual change in vision that naturally occurs with age.  

Blurred Vision

Hazy or unclear vision can indicate developing glaucoma, cataracts, or refractive errors.  Astigmatism causes blurred vision or trouble focusing on near or far away objects. People with diabetes may also experience blurry vision.  

Trouble With Night Vision

As they age, most people struggle to see at night in low light and may experience glare. Cataracts, age-related macular degeneration, myopia, Vitamin A deficiency, or an issue with the retina can all trigger problems with night vision.

Peripheral Vision Loss

Peripheral vision loss can be a slow or immediate loss of peripheral vision. It is also known as tunnel vision because you may feel you are in a tunnel as your vision narrows. The outer parts of your vision become dark. This vision loss creates problems when operating an automobile or other machinery. Peripheral vision loss is also a sign of glaucoma. 

Eye Pain or Discomfort 

If you experience constant eye pain or discomfort, do not ignore it. Eye pain is often a sign of eye disease. Let’s look at some types of eye pain and discomfort.

Redness and Irritation

Eye redness and irritation is not always a sign of eye disease. These symptoms are common among people who struggle with frequent allergies. However, these issues also occur with conjunctivitis (pink eye), or dry eye syndrome. Cold compresses, gentle washing, and OTC eye drops can help relieve the redness and irritation. 

Pressure or Dull Headache

Pressure behind the eyes or a dull headache is annoying and painful for some people. While the most common reason is a sinus infection, there are other reasons for constant eye pressure or headaches. Glaucoma is a primary contributor to increased intraocular pressure. If you experience this issue, limit screen time, rest, and call your eye care professional.

Pain or Piercing Headaches

Sudden eye pain or severe headaches are often associated with scleritis, acute angle-closure glaucoma, or optic neuritis. You may experience cluster headaches or migraines if you have one of these eye conditions. These are serious conditions and require immediate attention. 

Visual Distortions and Abnormalities 

Do you experience flashes, floaters, or other visual distortions? These can happen at any time, regardless of whether you drank coffee or didn’t get eight hours of sleep.

Floaters and Flashes

Floaters are little specks or cobweb shapes in your vision. Flashes may appear like flashes of lighting in your vision. Both are common with migraines or a detached or torn retina. They often go away on their own, but you should contact your eye care professional if they persist.

Distorted or Wavy Vision

Distorted or wavy vision is a sign of a serious eye problem. If curved or wavy lines appear in your vision, macular degeneration is a possible cause. Other visual distortions include halos, dark spots, blind spots, or flashes of light.

Central Vision Loss

The main reason for loss of central vision is age-related macular degeneration (AMD). In this disorder, you may gradually or suddenly lose the ability to see fine details. Central vision loss can also be due to diabetes, brain tumors, and cataracts. In most cases, surgery is required to restore central vision.

Changes in Eye Appearance 

Recognizing changes in your eye appearance can help prevent the progression of many eye conditions. 

Bloodshot Eyes

Bloodshot eyes can simply indicate insomnia or too much screen time. However, this issue may also be a warning sign of ocular inflammation or conjunctivitis. 

Bulging or Protruding Eyes

Thyroid eye disease can manifest in bulging or protruding eyes. These symptoms can also be a warning sign of an eye infection or injury.

Contact Us For Help With Eye Health and Eye Disease

Dr. Leo is passionate about helping his patients practice good eye health.  Contact our office for help with eye health. We are located in the Executive office park at 6321 Executive Blvd, Rockville, MD 20852

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Dr. L. J. Leo

Dr. Leo began his education at the Virginia College of Osteopathic Medicine in Blacksburg, Virginia, where he earned his doctorate in osteopathy. He completed his internal medicine residency through the U.S. Army and had the honor of serving multiple overseas tours before retirement.

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