Being Aware of Your Eye Health

A recent article emphasized the importance of being educated about our eyes. As one of the most essential organs in the body, it’s important to know some key facts.

Eye Issues Are More Common Than You Think

There are over 12 million people, 40 or more years old, living with vision problems in the United States. In addition, there are over 1 million individuals who are legally blind. 8 million people who have vision issues choose not to remedy it.

Don’t Overlook Eye Injuries

More than 2,000 people in the United States get wounded to the point that requires medical attention. Considering the lack of safety and security in the workplace being one of the major causes of eye injuries, it is important to seek medical attention whenever you get injured at work.

Recognizing the Severity of a Vision Handicap

A decreased ability to see where glasses or drugs do not help is known as vision disability. Under this umbrella are people with minor eye issues as well. Vision disability has been recognized as one of the top 10 disabilities for people over the age of 18.

You Might Be At Risk of Serious Vision Loss

Just in the United States there are around 93 million people who have a high risk of losing their vision. Concerningly, only about half of those people have been evaluated by an optometrist in the last year. The most common eye ailment people are in danger of is cataracts, which gives you blurry vision.

Diabetes Plays a Role

Diabetes is a leading source of eye issues within the United States. In severe cases, diabetes mellitus can lead to blindness. However, more than 90% of the vision issues that are caused by diabetes can be dealt with as long as it is identified early.

Low Awareness About Eye Conditions

It may come as a surprise that most people don’t understand that they have an eye condition. A number of people do not recognize the signs of glaucoma and diabetes mellitus retinopathy. This is why it is so important to be aware of the early indications and regularly see an optometrist.


Glaucoma is a term used to describe a group of conditions that are characterized by progressive optic nerve damage in the eye, often linked to a buildup of pressure. This increased pressure damages the optic nerve, which is responsible for transmitting images to your brain. If this damage continues, glaucoma can lead to permanent vision loss. While some types of glaucoma are not categorized as rare (e.g. primary open-angle glaucoma), other types are. These include:

  • Congenital glaucoma: glaucoma diagnosed in infancy or early childhood
  • Pseudoexfoliation syndrome: glaucoma characterized by flaky material that peels off of the outer layer of the eye
  • Irido Corneal Endothelial Syndrome (ICE): glaucoma usually only found in one eye when the back of the cornea has spread around the eye
  • Neovascular glaucoma: glaucoma that has been caused by the abnormal formation of new blood vessels on the eye


Symptoms of glaucoma largely depend on the particular type of the condition (see above), and sometimes, patients do not notice any symptoms early on. Often times, however, the first sign of glaucoma is a loss of peripheral vision, which may be difficult to detect. As pressure rises, eye pain, headache, and/or blurred vision can occur. Patients with glaucoma also report seeing halos around lights.


The following are types of glaucoma treatment that may be used in combination with each other:

  • Prescription eye drops to reduce the formation of fluid in the eye or increase the outflow of this fluid
  • Laser surgery to increase drainage of fluid
  • Microsurgery to create a new eye drainage channel
  • Oral medications to bring down eye pressure levels

These treatment options should be tailored based on the specific type and case of glaucoma, as some therapies are more effective than others based on the location, severity, and size of the blockage.

Diabetic Retinopathy 

Diabetic retinopathy is a complication of diabetes that can result in the loss of vision or even blindness. It’s the most common form of vision loss associated with diabetes.  


The early symptoms of diabetic retinopathy are typically not noticeable. They will come and go, often including seeing faraway objects or increased difficulty with reading. As the disease progresses, symptoms will evolve to include dark spots or streaks in one’s vision, vision loss, or complete blindness. 

There are possible complications of this condition as well, such as neovascular glaucoma, retinal detachment, and diabetic macular edema. 


In the early stages of the disorder, maintenance is the only treatment. Doctors will perform eye exams very regularly to monitor disease progression. If the disease has progressed, treatment can work to prevent any further vision loss, although it cannot reverse any damage. Treatment options include injections of anti-VEGF drugs or corticosteroids, vitrectomy, and laser treatment. 

There are steps to prevent diabetic retinopathy as well, all of which relate to managing diabetes. Follow doctor’s instructions, eat a healthy diet, exercise regularly, and try to maintain a normal blood sugar level. 

Eye Infections

Not all causes of eye issues are non-preventable. Eye infections are one thing that you can do preventative measures for. For one, getting enough sleep is actually important for your eyes. Quality sleep is important for the prevention of eye infections that can lead to glaucoma.

In addition, you need to be careful of your air conditioning as they can lead to eye infections as well. Air conditioners often dry the eyes since they decrease the moisture and temperature of the air. Not only could this lead to an infection, but it could also lead to corneal ulcers. Plus, they can spread fungus, infections, and germs.

Eye Health Is Important

Your eyes are your window to the world, and keeping them healthy is just as important as any other part of your body. If your eyesight is compromised it can lead to a number of issues such as absence of attention when you cannot clearly see, stumbling and falling, and a nagging feeling of missing out.

To keep your eye health in order be sure to see an optometrist on a regular basis (as decided by your doctor), eat more fruits and vegetables since they can help avoid eye infections, and eat foods that are full of vitamins and minerals called antioxidants. Take control of your eye heath sooner rather than later.

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