10 Signs of Age-Related Eye Problems

Regular eye exams are the very best way to avoid vision problems, even as you grow older. If you haven’t had an eye exam in over a year, schedule a visit with an eye doctor near you. Being aware of certain warning signs also can help you take appropriate steps to maintain your eyesight, particularly if vision symptoms occur suddenly. In many cases, such as with a detached retina or rapid onset of glaucoma, prompt intervention is essential to avoid or minimize permanent vision loss.

While many eye problems can occur at any age, they often are more common in older individuals. Unfortunately, aging also increases your risk for certain types of sight-threatening eye conditions that can lead to blindness.

The following signs and symptoms can indicate a medical emergency or an urgent condition that could cause significant vision loss over time. In most cases, you should see your eye doctor as soon as possible if you experience:

A sudden onset of many spots and floaters in your field of vision.

Usually, eye floaters are due to a benign, age-related condition called vitreous detachment. This occurs when the eye’s gel-like interior liquefies and separates from the retina, the light-sensitive inner lining of the back of the eye. But a sudden onset of spots and floaters also can be caused by a serious, sight-threatening tear or detachment of the retina. If you suddenly see a shower of spots and floaters, see an eye doctor immediately.

A sensation that a dark curtain has settled across your field of view.

This could be caused by a retinal detachment, which occurs when the retina separates from the underlying layer of nourishing blood vessels (choroid). If the retina is not reattached within hours, vision loss can be permanent.

Sudden eye pain, redness, nausea and vomiting.

These symptoms can signal a sudden (acute) attack of narrow-angle glaucoma, which can permanently damage the eye’s optic nerve. Immediate treatment is required to prevent permanent vision loss.

Double vision, double images or “ghost” images.

Double vision can be caused by many eye conditions. In some cases, double vision also can signal an underlying health emergency such as a stroke. If you have a sudden onset of double vision, see an eye doctor immediately.

Sudden blind spot in one eye.

If you are over 60, your chance of developing a macular hole in the most sensitive part of the retina. Because macular holes can worsen and cause permanent loss of vision, it’s important to see an eye doctor immediately if you notice a gray area or blind spot when viewing objects with one eye.

A narrowing of your field of view.

A reduction of your ability to see objects off to the sides could be a sign of glaucoma. Without intervention, peripheral vision loss could continue to worsen, leading to tunnel vision or even blindness.

A gray, blurry or distorted spot in the center of your visual field.

These symptoms may be caused by macular degeneration (AMD), a leading cause of blindness among older Americans. In the past, there was no effective treatment for macular degeneration. But today, new medical treatments sometimes can halt or limit AMD-related vision loss.

Poor night vision, halos around lights or less vivid color vision.

These vision changes may be due to cataracts. Cataracts tend to worsen gradually over time and are not a medical emergency. Nevertheless, as your eye’s natural lens continues to cloud with aging, your vision will continue to deteriorate unless you have cataract surgery that replaces your cloudy lens with a custom intraocular lens (IOL). If you wait too long for cataract surgery, you increase your chance of complications such as glaucoma. Also, if cataract surgery is postponed too long, the cloudy lens can harden and become more difficult to remove.

Blurred vision and gray areas in your visual field.

If you have diabetes, these vision problems may be due to the onset of diabetic retinopathy. Regular eye exams are essential for diabetics, particularly if you are over age 60. By evaluating the condition of your retina, your eye doctor can provide valuable information to your general physician about the control and severity of your diabetes.

Red, “scratchy,” irritated eyes.

These signs and symptoms are most commonly due to dry eye syndrome. Dry eyes usually are more of a nuisance than a sight-threatening condition. But symptoms can be severe, particularly as you grow older and your body produces fewer tears or your tear chemistry changes. Consult your eye care practitioner for advice about remedies, which may include over-the-counter or prescription eye drops.

Facebook
Twitter
WhatsApp
Pinterest
Reddit
Delicious
LinkedIn
Facebook
Twitter
WhatsApp

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

READ NEXT

7 Scary Things Your Mattress Could Give You

If you experience the following things, your old mattress could be the culprit. Make sure your mattress gives you the comfort you need to get enough sleep. It’s important to

Early Signs of Colon Cancer to Look Out For

Colorectal cancers (colon and rectal cancer), are the third most common type of cancer in men and women, resulting in nearly 50,000 deaths every year. Colon cancer is more common

7 Proven Benefits of Green Tea

Green tea has been used as a medicine for thousands of years, originating in China but widely used throughout Asia, this beverage has a multitude of uses from lowering blood

5 Best Exercises for People With Diabetes

Exercising regularly when you live with type 2 diabetes is essential because it can help you manage your blood sugar levels and weight. Doing exercises can also help you minimize

7 Foods That You Should Avoid Eating Raw

Kidney Beans Raw beans contain proteins called lectins that break down with cooking. Not all lectins are toxic; some are even beneficial. The lectin in kidney beans, though – called

Check Out the Surprising Health Benefits of Cashews

Cashews are nutritious and a powerhouse of proteins and minerals including calcium, copper, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, zinc and potassium. Cashew also contains vitamins such as vitamin C, vitamin B1, vitamin B2,

7 COPD Warning Signs You’re Ignoring Right Now

More than 15 million Americans are livings with COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease), which is an accelerating lung disease that causes serious breathing difficulties and can even be fatal. The

6 Types of Insulin and How They Work

What you need to know about this lifesaver: The good news when it comes to treat diabetes by taking insulin it’s that you have a variety of choices. Insulin can

7 Health Exams That Aren’t Worth the Money

You don’t have to do any health exams if they aren’t extremely necessary. So, unless your doctor has a specific medical reason to order such tests, these and other preventive

RELATED POSTS