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Eye care information on diseases and treatments
Introduction to Eye Problems
The eye is a complex organ and there is a multitude of things that can go wrong with your vision. Some disorders only affect one part of the eye and others affect the entire organ. Eye problems can lead to total or partial blindness if not treated quickly. It is estimated that 50% of cases of blindness could have been prevented if they were treated early.
In the United States, age related eye disorders are the main cause of vision problems and blindness. Blindness is on the rise because many cannot afford or bother with preventative eye treatment.
Common Symptoms of Eye Problems
There a multitude of eye disorders and all of them have a certain set of symptoms. However there are some symptoms that are common. The most common signs are eye pain, redness, poor vision, tearing and itching. Other symptoms are difficulty recognizing faces or performing your usual tasks and an inability to read street signs, newspapers or medicine bottle labels. Children may experience difficulty in school.
More unusual symptoms that can occur that are associated with rarer diseases are scaly eyelids, eye injury, spots in your vision, discharge from the eyes, photophobia and experiencing flu-like symptoms such as fever or running nose.
Vision loss doesn’t take place overnight. Most vision problems develop gradually. A sudden change of vision is a sign of a stroke. Stroke symptoms are blindness in one eye, partial loss of vision and seeing double.
The Causes of Eye Diseases
As the eye does have so many different parts it is vulnerable to many defects and diseases. However as it is such a complex organ it is also more difficult organs to correct.
One category of eye diseases are refractive vision defects. These include disorders such as far sightedness and astigmatism. Both disorders are the result of the lenses losing their shape and being unable to focus light on the retina. This can be caused by fatigue, over exposure, illness, poor diet and eye injury.
Many eye diseases and disorder are caused by an underlying medical condition. For instance, glaucoma is caused by high blood pressure. Diabetic retinopathy, which leads to blindness is caused by glaucoma.
Other problems are age-related as is the case with glaucoma, cataracts and near sightedness.
Injury or diseases can be caused by the entry of foreign objects into the cornea or aqueous humor causing dysfunction. Faulty contact lenses or infected contact lens fluids can also cause problems.
Chronic inflammation of the eyelids is called Blepharitis. Sometimes the tear ducts cease to work as efficiently or become clogged and cause a lack of tears. This can cause the cornea to dry out and become blocked so the person cannot see.
Treatment of Eye Problems
A disease or defect of the eye can take place in any one of its parts including the eyelids, cornea, macula, retina and lenses. Treatment for the problem depends on what part of the eye is affected and what the diagnosis is from an eye care professional.
Prevention is the best cure for eye problems. Eye care professionals recommend that you have eye check ups at least every two hours when you are younger and once a year after age thirty. If you have underlying medical problems such as high blood pressure (that can cause glaucoma) or diabetes then you need to see an ophthalmologist. He may also send you to a specialist for diabetes or high pressure who may recommend a diet, exercise or medication to help stave off further damage.
If a disease like diabetes or glaucoma does set in then medication, glasses and surgery may be prescribed to help preserve your sight.
It is crucial that eye diseases are detected early. Be sure to see an eye doctor as soon as you experience any disturbances in your sight. Eye diseases cannot be cured by vitamins or folk remedies so see a doctor as soon as you can.
Eye care belongs to a medical branch of study called ophthalmology. Ophthalmology has produced a number of different types of eye care professionals including optometrists and opticians. It is the ophthalmologist that has the medical degree and that is considered to be a doctor. The other two eye care professions are more concerned with dispensing eye aids.
The reason that there are several professions associated with eye care is because our vision is so essential to our well-being. Once it is lost, it is difficult to get our eyesight back.