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As we age we get wiser for our experiences and knowledge, but it is also an accepted fact that our body and organ system get much weaker and there may be little that we can do about it. As we hit the middle ages, we start to experience problems such as wrinkles or greying of hair and general fatigue and tiredness after a short amount of activity. However, the real trouble starts when major system dysfunctions, such as the eyes and the vision.
Simple things like reading a book or a newspaper may become major tasks and it may be time to realise that we may be suffering from presbyopia. Presbyopia is commonly known as farsightedness and this is a problem in which patients find it difficult to see objects clearly when they are too close to the eyes.
How it affects the eyes:
It is a common knowledge that the vision system works with the help of natural lenses and its focal point. When the focal point of vision falls on the lenses, you may be able to experience perfect vision, but when it starts to move slightly off the point you may experience problems in viewing regular things such as printed or written words or even the things on your phone or computer.
Experiencing blurred vision when you try to view closer objects occurs because the elasticity of the lens of the eyes changes and the focal length of the lens changes with it. However, there are a lot of treatment alternatives for the problem and people do not have to start feeling old just because they experience difficulty in vision.
The more conventional treatments for presbyopia include the use of glasses with a power of lens that help in correcting the vision and reading may become a favoured activity again. For those who find the use of glasses to be a hindrance in regular life may also opt for contact lens, which may be a more comfortable alternative for those who may not want to make their problem obvious to the world. In a lot of cases, the people who suffer from the problem of far-sightedness may also choose to undergo surgery for the problem so that it can be corrected completely and no other measures may have to be taken.
Health issues may be a regular occurrence as you advance in age and you may have to find alternatives and treatments that help ease out the situation, but it is most imperative to make sure that you take the best advice from a qualified and certified doctor so that you problem may be diagnosed correctly and you may be able to get treatment suggestions that may cater to your specific body and ailment needs.
Lazy eye or amblyopia is a childhood disorder wherein the child’s vision does not develop properly, especially in one of the eyes. If the condition is not treated at the very onset, it can lead to impaired vision in the concerned eye. As the child grows up, the brain will fail to pick up images from that eye.
This disorder is known to start when one eye has better vision than the other eye. An example would be if one of the eyes is affected by farsightedness (unable to see objects at a closer range) and the other is normal. In the case of a child, when the brain receives images from both the eyes, it will ignore the faulty eye’s image. When this situation repeats itself over months or years, it might lead to absolute deterioration of vision in the faulty eye.
Strabismus is another cause of amblyopia wherein there is a significant misalignment in the eye; one of the eyes may turn outward or inward. This does not allow the eye to focus properly on an object, thus leading to double vision. The brain again ignores the image from the faulty eye that causes vision deterioration in that eye.
The treatment begins by correcting problems in the affected eye and then putting a patch on the normal eye. Initially, the child may have difficulties adjusting to this new method, but bear in mind that it is absolutely necessary to wear the patch. The entire treatment process may range over a few weeks to even months. Regular visit to the doctor is of utmost importance.
In mild cases, an eye drop called ‘atropine’ may be prescribed for the good eye. The child may also require glasses to improve focus. In case of cataracts, a surgery might be needed to treat it.
The treatment should begin early, as it can get difficult to treat the condition once the child crosses his/her 7-8 year mark.
Diabetes is a scourge that has been spreading like wildfire across the globe. It is one of the major public health concerns of the modern era. Diabetes not only causes damage to your internal organs but will also take a toll on your eyes if left unchecked. Retinopathy, glaucoma, cataracts and blurry vision are common phenomena accompanying diabetes.
You may not notice it at first. Symptoms can include:
Blurry or double vision
Rings, flashing lights, or blank spots
Dark or floating spots
Pain or pressure in one or both of your eyes
Trouble seeing things out of the corners of your eyes
Thus Comprehensive Dilated Eye Exam plays an important role to detect it.
Here are some common Diabetic Eye Problems:
Blurry Vision: Do things turn blurry for you at times? Well it is not your glasses which are at fault but your high blood sugar count swelling up the lens within your eye and changing your ability to see. In order to correct your vision, you need to try bringing your sugar level back to the optimal range, which is 70 to 130 milligrams per deciliter. Do call on a doctor if the situation persists or deteriorates further.
Cataracts: Your eye lens is just like a camera that enables you to see through it by focusing on a particular object. If you have cataract, your otherwise clear lens gets shrouded a layer making it opaque and cloudy. You tend to face difficulties in the form of glares, blurred or clouded vision, and blind spots among other problems. Diabetics are prone to acquiring cataract much earlier than others, with the condition worsening subsequently. They are removed via surgery where your doctor substitutes your hazy lens with a new artificial one.
Glaucoma: You eye transmits images to your brain through the optic nerve. Pressure may build up within the optic nerve resulting in damage and ultimately causing total or partial blindness. This is a fairly common disorder with diabetics and a large number of cases pertaining to blindness due to diabetes are caused by this. Usually, glaucoma can be treated with laser, surgery, eye drops or medicines. It is important to visit a doctor as it can help stop the progression of the disorder much earlier.
Diabetic Retinopathy: The retina is a cluster of cells behind your eyes that absorbs light and converts them into images that are sent to the brain via your optic nerve. High blood sugar count can actually wreak havoc on the tiny blood vessels within your retina giving rise to diabetic retinopathy. Symptoms may include blurry vision, seeing spots, blind spots and difficulty in low light or night time. Retinopathy can cause you to progressively go blind and thus it is imperative that you go for periodic check-ups and keep your diabetes under control.
Control and Prevention
If you have diabetes, you are not doomed to develop diabetic eye disease. Although you are at risk, you have the ability to control your diabetes so your vision is not compromised. Controlling diabetes requires you to monitor your blood sugar levels regularly. Follow some steps to help you control and preserve your vision:
Taking your Medicines regularly as prescribed by your doctor. Skipping of medication may leads to irregular control and is more hazardous.
Eating Right food is essential when trying to prevent or control diabetes. Eat a diet that is high in nutrients, low in fat and moderate in calories. A high-fiber diet with low glycaemic index foods (slow-release carbohydrates) will keep blood sugar steady and make you feel full. Although you do not need to eliminate sugar completely, you must limit sugar to a small serving. The good news is that as you cut sweets, your cravings will change and you will naturally desire more healthy foods.
Keep your A1C level under 7%: A1C is a test you have during a visit to your endocrinologist to determine how well-controlled your diabetes has been during the previous 2-3 months. Keeping your blood glucose in this target range means less damage to the delicate blood vessels around your eyes.
Control blood pressure and Cholesterol Levels: People with diabetes have a greater chance of having high blood pressure and Cholesterol, which can cause eye blood vessel damage.
Regular Physical Exercise can help you control your blood sugar, increase fitness and reduce your risk for heart disease and nerve damage. You must track your blood sugar before, during and after exercise to prevent hypoglycaemia.
Annual comprehensive eye exams: If you are pre-diabetic or diabetic, it is even more important to have Complete Dilated eye exam to initially get baseline recordings of the eye conditions and then regular yearly follow-up visits to monitor changes in your vision. If you notice blurred vision and you have had diabetes for a length of time, it might be a signal you need to keep tighter control of your glucose levels.