Any new symptoms concerning your eyes, such as flashing lights, shadows, redness, watery eyes, or any change in your vision could indicate a problem and you should contact your optician straight away.
Below is some information about some of the more common conditions affecting the eyes that can be identified by your optician. For more detailed information, use the relevant links or visit the NHS Website and search their site for further information.
Glaucoma is a condition that results in a patchy loss of peripheral vision due to damage on the optic nerve. It
varies in severity but, when caught early, the resulting loss in vision can be minimised.
People over the age of 40, and those who are short-sighted, diabetic, or have a family history of the condition are generally at a higher risk of developing Glaucoma.
As you get older, the lens in your eye may start to cloud over and cause a gradual deterioration in vision, such
as objects appearing blurred, changes in colour vision, double vision, or poor vision in bright light.
Should you be affected by cataracts, your vision can be improved by surgical removal of the lens when it 'ripens' and a new lens is inserted.
High blood sugar levels, commonly found in diabetic patients, can cause the cells in the retina at the back of
your eye to become damaged, and can ultimately result in blindness if not treated and managed promptly.
While Diabetic Retinopathy can be managed with good control of blood pressure, blood sugar, and cholesterol levels, more serious cases can sometimes require laser surgery to prevent further damage.
Blurring or loss of vision in your central field of view typically occurs in older people, and is due to damage
to the macula of the retina. Other symptoms may include difficulty discerning colours, especially dark from
It can be hereditary, and smokers are at a higher risk of developing this condition.
The severity of Macular Degeneration is divided into three main types: Early, Intermediate & Late, and Late stage Macular Degeneration can be divided into two further forms: 'Wet' and 'Dry', with 'Dry' being the most common form for Late stage patients.
Certain supplements can be used to slow the progression of Macular Degeneration, and the 'Wet' form of Late stage Macular Degeneration can be prevented from worsening by medical injections into the eye, laser treatment, and/or photodynamic therapy.
Any alteration in the chemical makeup of the tear film can result in irritation of the eyes, as the tear film is
responsible for keeping the eyes moist and lubricated.
The tear film can be affected by age, hormonal imbalances, environmental factors, and activities such as prolonged periods of reading or computer use.
Other more serious medical conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis can also produce Dry Eye symptoms.
The symptoms of Dry Eye Syndrome can be treated with a variety of drops, gels, and ointments.
Bacterial infections and allergic reactions can cause the glands around the eye lashes to become blocked, which
in turn causes the eyelid to become inflamed, resulting in discomfort.
Blepharitis can usually be treated by a disciplined eye cleaning routine using specified eye wipes. It's not usually a serious condition, but may need antibiotic treatment and can often recur.