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Causes of loss of vision and eye infections

Farsightedness (Hyperopia)

Farsightedness is the result of the visual image being focused behind the retina  rather than directly on it. A farsighted person sees faraway objects clearly, wh ile objects that are near are blurred. Farsightedness occurs because the eyeball is smaller than average or the focusing power is too weak causing the light that is focused in the eye to land behind the retina rather than on the retina. Farsightedness is often present from birth, but children can often tolerate moderate amounts without difficulty, and most outgrow the condition. Book to have your child’s eyes tested at the Optical Studio here.

 

Nearsightedness (Myopia)

Nearsightedness is caused by the eye being bigger than average, causing light focused in the eye to land in front of the retina rather than on the retina. Nearsightedness means you can see better up close than you can at far distances. Nearsightedness results in blurred vision when the visual image is focused in front of the retina, rather than directly on it. Nearsightedness can be detected in children and may progress over time thus the need for annual examinations.


Diabetes

The blood vessels in the eye are very delicate and are often the first to be affected by diabetes. As these vessels can be viewed directly, your optometrist will be able to detect any diabetic related symptoms. If you experienced fluctuating vision (good one day and poor the next) this is an indication you may have diabetes. Another indicator to detect diabetes is poor distance vision. If you suffer from diabetes ensure you have good control over your blood sugar levels. Book your annual optometric examination at the Optical Studio in order to detect any changes in your eyes.

 

Cataracts


Although no direct link has been established for the development of cataracts reasons such aas age, hereditary, disease or damage to the eye has been suggested as the trigger for the chemical change inside the eye which turns the lens cloudy resulting in cataracts

Both eyes are usually affected, but not at an identical rate. At present no one knows how to prevent the formation of cataracts, but protecting the eyes from UV exposure is recommended. Since no pain or redness is normally experienced with cataracts, symptoms to note are hazy/blurred vision or a ‘film over the eyes’, spots in front of the eyes or even a growing sensitivity to glare, particularly at night.

If you have a cataract, wearing prescription spectacles may help your vision for a short period of time. If the cataract develops to a stage where it affects normal life, surgery may be necessary. This procedure is fairly uncomplicated and is performed by an Ophthalmologist. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, visit the Optical Studio for a Cataracts vision screeningto detect if you are suffering from cataracts.


Colour deficiency

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Colour deficiency means a lower than normal ability to distinguish colours and shades. Very few people are ‘colour blind’, i.e. unable to identify any colours at all. Colour deficiency is usually hereditary, but injury and conditions caused by side-effects of certain medicines can also impair the function of the colour-sensitive cone cells in the retina, which send the brain the correct colour signals.

People are generally unaware of having any colour deficiency problem. It is vital that every child should be tested for colour deficiency by the age of five years. Colour coded learning aids are widely used in primary schools and much time may be lost in investigating learning difficulties which result simply from colour deficiency. Colour deficiency may also preclude certain career choices, e.g. pilot, electrician, and policeman.


Glaucoma

It may be difficult to identify glaucoma until a significant amount of vision is lost. Therefore, glaucoma is often referred to as the “silent thief,” because most individuals with undiagnosed glaucoma do not suffer from any early symptoms – it takes testing by an optometrist to identify glaucoma. Book your glaucoma eye test here.

Glaucoma, is one of the leading causes of blindness, it is caused when fluid pressure builds up inside the eyeball, damaging the retina and optic nerve. Because glaucoma is most common in people over 40 years of age, regular, full eye examinations are essential. In addition glaucoma has a genetic tendency, additionally short-sighted people and diabetics are more prone to develop glaucoma.

There are two kinds of glaucoma:

  • Primary open-angle glaucoma produces no pain and little noticeable disturbance in vision. Without warning, you may actually have lost some vision before any symptoms appear.
  • Acute angle-closure glaucoma is caused by a sudden blockage of the eye’s drainage passages. Pressure builds up quickly, vision becomes blurred, lights appear to have coloured rings around them, and the eyes are painful and red.

Individuals who are at risk are those with high stress levels, poor diet, family history, high blood pressure, obesity, heart disease, and heavy computer users. If diagnosed early enough, glaucoma can be controlled, resulting in little or no more loss of vision. If not treated, peripheral as well as central vision will be destroyed and blindness may result.