Most of us don't go to the eye doctor regularly. Basic healthcare plans don't offer vision coverage, and the majority of people aren't worried about getting their vision checked unless they have a good reason. It makes sense, then, that regular optometrist visits aren't on the average-sighted person's to-do list.
But there are several common eye problems people write off daily; this article will take a look at three common eye problems you might be totally unaware you have and tell you how to go about fixing them.
Dry Eye Syndrome
If your eyes are frequently red, watery and itchy, you may have Dry Eye Syndrome. DES occurs when your eyes don't produce enough tears or you don't maintain enough tears to keep your eyes moist.
Due to the lack of moisture in the eyes, dust and other particles can cause irritation which results in symptoms like:
- Stinging and burning.
- Is it treatable?
Dry Eye Syndrome can be further aggravated if you spend a lot of time staring at a computer screen. Luckily, in most cases, you can treat the problem with over-the-counter eye drops. If you experience prolonged discomfort, swelling, pus or discharge, consult a physician immediately.
Astigmatism is a common eyesight problem caused by a misshapen cornea. Because of an irregular curve in the eye, light does not pass through the same way it does on a regular eye. The result is fuzzy or blurred vision.
There are two types of astigmatism: corneal and lenticular.
What's The Difference?
Corneal astigmatism originates in the eye's cornea. Lenticular astigmatism, on the other hand, is the result of an irregularly shaped lens. Both cases can be treated by visiting an eye care professional and receiving an official diagnosis.
Then, through the prescription of special astigmatism contacts or eyeglasses, the problem can be corrected with relative ease. For those who want a more permanent solution, astigmatism can also be cured through laser eye surgery, most commonly Lasik.
Have you noticed that your eyes aren't able to focus on things as quickly as they used to? If so, you might have a common eye problem known as presbyopia. This is the result of natural aging and is marked by the gradual inability to read or maintain eye focus for long periods of time.
Presbyopia is most present in people over 40, but there are younger people who may experience similar symptoms as a result of farsightedness, nearsightedness, astigmatism or long sight (hypermetropia).
How can I stop my eyes from going out of focus?
If your weakened eye strength is caused by presbyopia, you may be a candidate for eye laser surgery or less invasive solutions such as special eyeglasses.
If your eyes fall out of focus frequently and you have one of the conditions mentioned above, a visit to eye care professionalscan help you identify the problem and offer corrective procedures and eyewear.
Eye Safety Measures
We live in a world that is more digital by the day. As a result, most of us spend a lot of time staring at computers for both work and leisure, reading on tablets and texting on smartphones.
We can't change the fact that more of our lives is digitalized, but we can protect our eyes from harm caused by prolonged screen exposure. Eyestrain is a very common health problem today, especially in the workforce. Thankfully, there are glasses and other products that help reduce this strain and shield our eyes from the blue light emanated by electronic screens.
Many devices are also built with a blue screen feature that is easier on the eyes and is especially good for nighttime users who may experience sleep disturbances and insomnia as a result of blue light exposure.
The best way to make sure everything's always in working order is to have an annual visit with an optometrist. Apart from ensuring your eyes are operating at optimum capacity, they can give you tips on how to keep your eyes strong and correct any emerging vision problems before they cause any disturbances.
Emma is a freelance writer currently living in Boston, MA. She writes most often on education and business. For eye care professionals, Emma recommends All About Eyes. To see more from Emma, say hi on Twitter @EmmaSturgis2