Photophobia, or light sensitivity, is an intolerance of light. Sources such as sunlight, fluorescent light and incandescent light all can cause discomfort, along with a need to squint or close your eyes. Headaches also may accompany light sensitivity. Light-sensitive people sometimes are bothered only by bright light. In extreme cases, however, any light can be irritating. Photophobia is a common symptom of migraine headaches. These are severe headaches that can be triggered by a number of factors, including hormonal changes, foods, stress, and environmental changes. Other symptoms include throbbing in one part of your head, nausea, and vomiting.
HOW IS PHOTOPHOBIA DIAGNOSED?
Diagnosis of the same is done by an ophthalmologist who would do a few eye tests and also check for your reaction against lights of different kinds.
HOW IS PHOTOPHOBIA TREATED?
The best treatment for light sensitivity is to address the underlying cause. Once the triggering factor is treated, photophobia disappears in many cases. Types of treatment include:
• medications and rest for migraines
• eye drops that reduce inflammation for scleritis
• antibiotics for conjunctivitis
• artificial tears for mild dry eye syndrome
• antibiotic eye drops for corneal abrasions
• anti-inflammatory medications, bed rest, and fluids for mild cases of encephalitis. Severe cases require supportive care, such as breathing assistance.
• antibiotics for bacterial meningitis. The viral form usually clears up on its own within two weeks.
• surgery to remove excess blood and relieve pressure on your brain for subarachnoid hemorrhage
DID YOU KNOW?
Photophobia is a common symptom of migraine headaches.