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When to Get Your Vision Checked

In patients, whether young or old, sometimes poor vision can be caused by a few factors including anatomical changes or irregularities in the eye or visual system, eye diseases, side effects caused by medication or eye injuries. Commonly, people also report visual abnormalities associated with age or eye stress. This can cause changes in your eyesight, which can make it uncomfortable or difficult to perform daily activities, like reading the newspaper or looking at a computer screen 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 have blurred vision when you are looking at distant objects, you might be nearsighted, or myopic. If you suffer from blurred vision when you're looking at objects nearby this may be a sign of hyperopia, or farsightedness. Blurred vision can also be a symptom of astigmatism which occurs due to an irregularity in the way the cornea is formed, or sometimes the curvature of the lens inside the eye. In all cases of blurry vision, it is really important that an optometrist thoroughly check your eyes and prescribe a solution to help clarify your sight.

Another common indicator of a vision problem is the inability to distinguish between different colors or brightness of color. This is an indication of a color perception problem, or color blindness. Interestingly, this condition is often unknown to the patient until diagnosed with a test. Color blindness is mainly something that affects males. If present in a female it may represent ocular disease, and an optometrist should be consulted. If you struggle to distinguish between objects in dim light, it could mean the patient suffers from night blindness.

Cataracts, a condition frequently seen aging people can have a number of warning signs including: hazy vision that worsens in bright light, trouble seeing in the dark or reduced light, trouble seeing small writing or details, the need for brighter light when reading, double or triple vision in one eye only painful inflammation around the eye, and a milky white appearance to the usually dark pupil.

Pulsing pain in the eye, headaches, blurred sight, redness in the eye, rainbow halos around lights, nausea and vomiting are also signs of glaucoma, a severe medical illness, which requires medical attention.

With younger patients, 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. Some behavior in children, like rubbing eyes frequently, squinting, or needing to shut one eye in order to see things better, often indicate this issue.

Though some conditions could be more severe than others, anything that limits good eyesight can be something that really affects your quality of life. A brief appointment with your optometrist can prevent unnecessary discomfort, not to mention even more severe eye and vision problems.