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Watching Out for Poor Vision

Poor vision in adults or children can be the result of a few conditions such as changes in the body or irregularities in the eye or visual system, diseases affecting the eye, side effects due to medicine or injuries to the eye. Commonly, people also suffer from visual abnormalities resulting from aging or eye strain. These experiences can cause changes in your vision, which may make it uncomfortable or difficult to perform everyday activities such as reading books or looking at a computer screen for extended periods of time. Common signs and symptoms of such vision problems include eye strain, headache, blurred vision, squinting and problems seeing at short or long distances.

Blurred vision is one of the most oft-reported signs of a vision problem. If you report blurred vision when you're looking at faraway objects, you could be nearsighted, or myopic. If you suffer from blurred vision when you're looking at objects at close range it may be a sign of hyperopia, or farsightedness. Blurred vision can also be a sign of astigmatism because of an abnormality in the shape of the cornea, or sometimes the curvature of the lens inside the eye. In all cases of blurry vision, it's essential to have your optometrist thoroughly check your vision and decide on the best way to rectify your sight.

Another indicator of a vision problem is the inability to distinguish between different colors or intensity of color. This indicates a problem perceiving color, or color blindness. Color vision defects are generally not known to the patient until proven by testing. Color blindness is mainly found in males. If a woman has difficulty seeing color it could mean she has ocular disease, and an eye care professional needs to be consulted. For people who struggle to distinguish between objects in minimal light, it is a sign of possible night blindness.

Cataracts, a condition frequently seen older patients have a number of telltale signs which include: unclear vision that worsens in bright light, weak night vision, trouble seeing small writing or objects, colors that appear faded or yellowed, improvement in near vision while distance vision worsens, puffiness of the eye, and a pale look to the normally dark pupil.

Throbbing eye pain, headaches, blurred sight, redness in the eye, colorful halos around lights, nausea and vomiting are indicators of glaucoma, an acute medical illness, which requires medical attention.

In children, it is important to watch for uncoordinated eye movement, or eyes that cross in or out, which could indicate a condition known as strabismus. Specific behavior in children, like rubbing one or both eyes, squinting, head tilting, or needing to shut one eye in order to focus better, often indicate this issue.

If you experience any of the symptoms we've mentioned here, see your eye doctor promptly. Even though some conditions could be more severe than others, anything that restricts clear vision will be a burden, and impact your quality of life. A brief appointment with your optometrist can save you from being avoidably uncomfortable, not to mention even more severe eye problems.