If you wear glasses, you're probably familiar with the occasional vision problem, especially when your prescription is about to change. While some problems you may have with your eyes are minor and don't need to be worried about—such as the occasional dry eye—others may be warning you about serious problems. Here are four vision disturbances that you should never ignore.
Bright Flashing Lights
If your field of vision is interrupted by occasional bright, flashing lights, you should talk to your optometrist as soon as possible. Those flashing lights may be a sign that you're in the beginning stages of retinal detachment. Without proper care, permanent damage could be done to your eye, which could result in blindness. When you see your optometrist, be sure to tell them how often you experience the flashing lights. This can help them determine the severity of the condition.
If you occasionally experience small floaters in your field of vision, it's usually something like an eyelash or a speck of dust on the surface of your eye. However, if you're experiencing floaters in your field of vision on a regular basis, you should have your vision checked by an optometrist as soon as possible. This is particularly true if the floaters take up a large portion of your field of vision. Like flashes of light, floaters can be a sign of retinal detachment.
Narrowing Field of Vision
If your field of vision is narrowing, meaning you can no longer see peripherally, you may be in the beginning stages of glaucoma. Glaucoma can cause you to lose your peripheral vision or the vision that you're able to see to the sides of your face. This condition will make you feel as if you're looking through a tunnel. If you're experiencing tunnel vision, you should have your vision tested for glaucoma immediately.
If you've noticed the development of a blind spot in your field of vision, you should talk to your optometrist about macular degeneration. This is particularly true if you're over the age of 50 or the blind spot has been increasing in size. Age-related macular degeneration—which is the leading cause of vision loss in people over 50—occurs when the macula of the eye deteriorates.
You depend on your eyes. To protect your vision, you should see your optometrist at least once every two years. If you experience any of the symptoms described above, you should see your optometrist as soon as possible.
When I figured out that I had vision problems, I was really nervous about wearing glasses, getting contacts, or undergoing eye surgery. I didn't know what to choose, how comfortable I would be, or what to do about the upcoming changes in my life. In order to make sense of my new lifestyle, I made an appointment with a trained optician in my area to have a little chat. I mentioned my fears, and he talked with me about all of the different options available. It was incredible to see how much of a difference the right advice made. I was fitted with custom glasses, and my journey is detailed on my website. If you are nervous, read on to learn why you shouldn't be.