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Recognizing When to Get Your Vision Checked

In patients, whether young or old, sometimes poor vision can be due to a few conditions such as anatomical changes or irregularities in the eye or visual system, eye diseases, side effects caused by medication or injury. Many people also report visual abnormalities due to aging or eye strain. This can result in changes in your vision, which may sometimes cause pain and even make it harder to perform everyday activities such as reading books or working on a computer for long periods. These vision problems can be expressed via the following symptoms: blurry vision, headaches, eye strain, squinting and problems seeing at short or long distances.

Blurred vision is one of the most commonly occurring signs of a vision problem. If you suffer from blurred vision when you're focusing on faraway objects, you could very well be nearsighted, or myopic. If you suffer from blurred vision when you're viewing something nearby this may be a sign of hyperopia, or farsightedness. It can also be a sign of astigmatism due to an irregularity in the shape of the cornea, or sometimes the curvature of the lens inside the eye. No matter the reason you have blurry vision, it's vital that an optometrist examine your eyes and decide on the most effective way to rectify your sight.

Another indicator of a vision problem is the inability to distinguish between shades or strength of color. This indicates a color perception problem, or color blindness. Color vision defects are usually not known to the patient until diagnosed by testing. Color blindness is mainly something that affects males. If a woman has problems perceiving color it might represent ocular disease, and an optometrist needs to be consulted. For those who have difficulty distinguishing objects in dim light, it is a sign of possible night blindness.

A problem commonly found in aging people is cataracts, which have several warning signs which include: unclear sight that weakens in bright light, weak night vision, difficulty discerning small writing or objects, the need for brighter light when reading, double or triple vision in one eye only painful puffiness around the eye, and a milky white appearance to the normally dark pupil.

Throbbing pain in the eye, headaches, blurry sight, inflammation in the eye, colorful halos around lights, nausea and vomiting are also signs of glaucoma, a severe medical illness, which needs prompt medical attention.

When it comes to children, it's useful to keep an eye out for weak eye movement, or eyes that cross in or out, which could indicate a condition known as strabismus. Certain behavior, such as rubbing one or both eyes, squinting, head tilting, or the need to close one eye to see things better, can often point to this issue.

If you have any of the symptoms we've mentioned here, visit your eye doctor as soon as possible. Though some conditions may be more severe than others, anything that limits clear vision will be something that compromises your quality of life. A short consultation with your optometrist can prevent being avoidably uncomfortable, or even more severe eye damage.


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