As we get older, everything starts to fail a bit; and our eyes are no exception. We can work out to keep our bodies fit, but to keep our eyes in good shape is not as simple.
Good nutrition and regular check-ups will help stave off age-related vision problems, and early diagnosis is useful in the treatment of many eye conditions.
Being aware of certain warning signs, particularly those with a sudden onset will help you to take the appropriate steps to maintain your eyesight.
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.
1) Spots and ‘floaters’ in your field of vision
Often, spots and floaters are due to a relatively benign age-related condition called vitreous detachment. The eye's gel-like interior becomes more liquid, and separates from the retina, the area on the back wall of the eye where vision processing occurs.
However 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, visit your optometrist or ophthalmologist immediately.
2) A ‘dark curtain’ across your field of view.
This is potentially a serious condition and may be caused by a retinal detachment, which occurs when the retina separates from the underlying layer of nourishing blood vessels (choroid).
Immediate attention is needed for a retinal detachment; if it’s not re-attached within hours the vision loss can be permanent.
3) 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.
4) Narrowing of the field of vision (either gradual or sudden)
This could mean you have developed glaucoma that damages your optic nerve, with accompanying vision loss at the "edges" of your field of view. Without intervention, vision loss will continue and permanent blindness may result.
5) A gradual loss of central vision, including distortions
These symptoms may be caused by macular degeneration (AMD), a leading cause of blindness among older Irish people. Notoriously difficult to treat, ‘dry’ AMD is the most common form of the disease.
6) Blurry vision, ghost images, and night "halos"
Cloudy and blurred eyesight, "halos" around lights at night, loss of bright colour vision-all may indicate the development of cataracts. The lens of the eye begins to get cloudy over time, and eventually you will go blind unless you have eye surgery to replace that cloudy lens with a man-made 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.
7) Diabetic Retinopathy
Blind spots in your field of view accompanied by eye floaters and unexplained blurred vision; diabetics must have regular eye exams, particularly those over 60 years of age.
By evaluating the condition of your retina, your eye doctor also can provide valuable information to your general physician about the control and severity of your diabetes.
8) Itchy, irritated eye surface pain
These signs and symptoms are most commonly due to dry eye syndrome. It’s more of a painful nuisance than a medical emergency, but is very uncomfortable, and can get worse as the chemistry of your tears that moisturise the eye changes. Over-the counter lubricating eye drops and attention to diet will help.
9) Double vision or "ghost" images.
Double vision can be caused by many eye conditions. Some may be very serious, such as a stroke or an attack of Multiple Sclerosis. Double vision after hitting your head can be an indication of a brain injury. If you experience sudden double vision, see a doctor immediately.
10) Sudden blurry vision in one eye.
Older people are at risk of developing a macular hole in the part of the retina where the fine focusing happens, increases. Because macular holes can worsen and cause permanent loss of vision, it's important to visit your eye care practitioner for a diagnosis and prompt treatment.
Not all vision problems are severe or urgent; but it’s better to be safe than sorry and sudden vision loss is often a sign that something has gone wrong all of a sudden. Always contact your doctor when you experience a sudden vision loss issue.
You also can reduce your chances of developing serious eye problems by maintaining a healthy lifestyle, along with undergoing regular eye exams. Eye vitamins and good nutrition also may reduce your risk of certain eye problems.
To book a free consultation with Optilase and see if laser eye surgery can help your eye condition, call +353 1 223 8821 or see www.optilase.com
Great experience and great after care. Had 2020 vision within 24 hours with very minimal pain.
Amazing experience , amazing staff, amazing eye sight . I had lens replacement 3 months ago and would highly recommend.
I got my laser eye surgery done on April 20th and couldn’t be happier. I had one hard day of recovery, followed by dry eyes for a small while. Sleeping with the protective goggles is the hardest part, but you’re helped throughout the process by experts. I couldn’t recommend this enough and Optilase were a dream to deal with. Even if you can’t afford the treatment now, you can always talk about a payment plan and get the vision you’ve always wanted.
I could not rate high enough, consultation was extremely informative and the staff were amazing, very friendly and answered all my questions with ease.
I had a wonderful experience in Optilase in Ely Place, the staff were so kind and helpful and made me feel really comfortable. Would absolutely recommend
Couldn't rate Optilase high enough. I had Lens Replacement Surgery. My experience from the first phone call to the procedure itself and the aftercare was fantastic. All of the staff from the call centre to the staff in Carrickmines and the theatre were so helpful and friendly. Would definitely recommend .
I had my PRK done on both eyes , and im happy with the result. The post operation pain was extreme but it settled down after 4 days. Now i feel great after 2 weeks post operation no complications what so ever , other than blurry vision now and then, but its improving every day
Got LASIK in Ely Place only yesterday and officially had 20/20 vision just 24 hours later! Cannot recommend Optilase enough from my initial consultation with Aisling in Athlone to my trips to Carrickmines and Ely Place. The staff really look after you from the moment you walk in the door and make you feel so at ease from start to finish - 10 out of 10 experience!
I highly recommend this place, reliable information and care, full professionalism.
LASIK was so easy and pain free. It’s one week post surgery and my eye sight is wonderful. I couldn’t recommend enough.
I no longer need glasses,absolutely life changing.Great aftercare,lovely staff.
I have been wearing glasses for over 20 years. I always hated wearing contact lenses and I got to a time in my life that I needed a change. A friend recommended optilase, I went for the free consultation and the person that did all the exams was really nice and I felt safe and confident enough to go ahead, I was recommended the PRK. I Put on a piece of paper how much I spent and would still spend on glasses for the next 10 years, and the surgery was for sure cheaper than that. My prescription was very high, both eyes, myopia and astigmatism Optilase provided all the information I needed, in clear manner. And they always made clear that there was nothing wrong with my eyes, it was my own choice to go for the surgery. The day of the surgery I was a bit nervous, who wouldn't? But then, from the reception to the surgeon, they were all so nice and welcoming. Hernandez performed the procedure, lovely surgeon, again all information was provided the way it should. I was instructed in what I should and should not do. The actual procedure took less than 15min, I felt nothing, no discomfort or anything. The whole process is very well done by the team, if I remember well around 3 people supporting the surgery plus one other girl providing pos surgery instructions. Right after the procedure I could already see much better than before without glasses! I couldn't believe it, I cried, thanked everyone and left the clinic knowing that I made the best choice. The recovery for PRK is a bit longer, I stayed for 2 full days no phones, or any screens. In the dark. If you have a little one, I would recommend to have someone minding them, as you are very limited in what you can do for the day of and day after surgery. It is hard to open the eyes, the second day after surgery was the toughest, I thought all went wrong as the vision got worst, but again I was advised it could happen. Note that this was my experience and could be different for other people. The 3rd day I felt nothing and could see much better already. Light sensitivity was very high, and still, 6 days after surgery, but nothing that a sun glasses would not help. My vision still blurred, but I need no glasses to see, my eyes feel dry sometimes, but the eye drops provided helps with it and and am very happy with the results already, even knowing it takes a bit longer to fully recover the vision. I'm back to work (screen at 200% to make sure I dont force my eyes too much) and I have had no headaches or anything, which I would have all the time looking at screens for most of my day. I cannot recommend Optilase enough, they are amazing! If you want to do something for your self and want a place you can trust, go for it, choose Optilase. Thanks to the whole team for one of the best things I did for my self!