6 Common Eye Disorders and Diseases

It’s normal to have a few eye problems throughout your life. There are times when you’ll be able to treat them yourself, but you may develop a disorder or disease that requires professional help. In any case, it’s smart to learn more so that you can identify your symptoms.

You likely already know about nearsightedness and farsightedness. Here are six other common eye disorders and diseases that you may not recognize.

1. Eyestrain

This condition isn’t a disease because you can experience eyestrain without any underlying conditions. That said, it’s an important topic to cover due to how many people get eyestrain. The digital age has caused more than 60% of Americans to have eyestrain from electronic devices.

You can experience eyestrain from using your eyes too much. This occurrence may happen when you drive for a long time or use a computer for hours. The symptoms of eyestrain include:

  • Blurred vision
  • Dry or watery eyes
  • Headaches
  • Light sensitivity
  • Tired or burning eyes

There are a few ways to treat eyestrain. It’s always best to give your eyes a break while working. Try looking away from your screen every 20 minutes. You can also ask your optometrist about artificial tears to keep your eyes moist.

2. Cataracts

Does your vision seem cloudy? You may have cataracts. This eye disorder occurs when your eye lens doesn’t let light hit your retina properly. Your surroundings will appear blurry and foggy because things won’t be able to process correctly.

There generally aren’t any symptoms you’ll feel when you have cataracts. Instead, you’ll gradually notice your eyesight changing. The signs of cataracts are:

  • Poor night vision
  • Seeing faded colors
  • Seeing halo-like shapes around lights
  • Issues with glare
  • Needing brighter light to read

You should be able to use specific glasses and other tools to improve your vision. If not, you can have surgery to replace your eye lenses with artificial versions.

3. Macular Degeneration

This condition leads to vision loss from deterioration in the center portion of the retina called the macula. It affects over 10 million people in the U.S., so it’s more prevalent than you may think. There are two types of macular degeneration known as wet and dry. The former is the most common kind.

If you have macular degeneration, you’ll start to notice a shift in your vision quality. The macula helps your eyes complete many functions, from recognizing faces to viewing colors. You may be developing macular degeneration if you’ve noticed indicators like:

  • Blurred or wavy vision
  • Partial loss of vision
  • Things appearing smaller than normal

There are three stages of macular degeneration. The first stage isn’t always detectable, so it’s important to visit your optometrist regularly. You want to catch macular degeneration before your condition worsens because there’s no cure.

4. Night Blindness

How well can you see when it’s dark? If you have issues navigating dark spaces, you could have night blindness. This condition is known as nyctalopia. It’s one of the most common eye disorders that you can experience.

A person with night blindness will have problems seeing most things at night. This issue may lead to an inability to drive past a particular hour. It’s important to note that nyctalopia isn’t a disorder itself. It’s usually a symptom of underlying issues such as a lack of vitamin A.

5. Glaucoma

This disease damages your eye’s optic nerve. There’s a pressure buildup in the fluid of your eye that hinders your eye’s ability to process images. There are two kinds of glaucoma called open-angle and angle-closure. The former is more standard.

The two types of glaucoma have different symptoms. The first version won’t have any signs at first. Eventually, you may experience tunnel vision. The second version is more serious. If you notice blurred vision, severe pain and red eyes, you need to seek treatment immediately to avoid blindness.

There are many ways to treat glaucoma. These methods include anything from medications to surgery. In any case, it’s essential to act quickly so that you can avoid irreversible vision loss that will occur over time.

6. Astigmatism

This condition isn’t as damaging as other common eye disorders. That said, it’s still crucial to treat your astigmatism properly. If you have astigmatism, your cornea is curved abnormally. You may be more likely to get astigmatism due to your genetics.

You might not have symptoms that alert you to your astigmatism. However, you can experience things like:

  • Eyestrain
  • Squinting
  • Blurred vision
  • Headaches
  • Irritation
  • Night blindness

Your optometrist will be able to aid your astigmatism with different solutions. The most popular include corrective lenses, laser surgery and special eyeglasses.

Keep an Eye Out for These Common Eye Disorders and Diseases

If you’re experiencing eye-related problems, you should take steps to see whether you have a specific condition. In some cases, you can easily ignore your symptoms — but that can be a detrimental decision. Stay on top of your eye health to avoid long-term, irreversible issues.