Many of the memorable experiences you’ve had in life, you owe to your sense of sight. Your peepers are your gateway towards seeing the world and all its beauty. You use your eyes to see things, read words, and of course, to express your emotions. With the many functions you use your pair of eyes for, it’s only right that you give it with proper attention and delicate care. How you care for your eyes will define how long they can function properly until your golden years.
Unfortunately, many people don’t pay enough care and attention to their eye health. As much as you use your eyes for everything you do, it’s also one of your body parts that are easily overlooked. Sometimes, people only realize that something’s wrong with their eyes when they’re finally experiencing problems with their vision or realizing they need the prescribed eyewear.
The truth is, your eye health can reveal a lot about your overall wellbeing. Once your sense of sight starts deteriorating, it may indicate that your body is also experiencing other health conditions. Thus, it’s imperative that you take every sudden vision changes seriously. When you detect any symptoms of eye problems, it’s best not to take any chance of delaying your visit to an eye specialist and have them checked immediately.
To preserve your vision as you age, take note of these five warning signs of severe eye problems you shouldn’t ignore.
Signs for Possible Eye Problems
1. Double Vision
Double vision happens when a person starts seeing two objects on top of one another or next to each other. It can occur randomly, or worse, all the time. If you’re experiencing double vision with only one eye, it may indicate that you have issues with your retina. It can also be a warning of a cataract, an eye condition that should never be overlooked.
If your double vision occurs with both eyes, it indicates that your eye muscles aren’t properly aligned. The possible cause may be related to neurological problems. This symptom can also happen if you’ve had too many drugs or alcohol. If you haven’t had any substance consumption, you’ll need to have your eyes checked right away.
Double vision can cause problems with your daily life as it’ll be impossible for you to read or even balance yourself when you walk or stand. It can disrupt your daily routines if not treated right away. If your double vision is matched with pain or slurred speech, then have yourself brought to the emergency room immediately.
2. Frequent Floaters
It’s normal to see floaters in your vision, especially when you directly look at bright lights. They can also appear if you stare at the blue sky or a white wall for more extended periods. Floaters come in various shapes and sizes, such as an endless number of dots or a group of insects floating in the air. However, if floaters suddenly increase and you tend to see them more frequently despite not looking at the sky or any bright lights, that’s a warning sign of a severe eye problem you shouldn’t overlook.
Frequent floaters may indicate an underlying inflammation at the back of your eye, hemorrhage or bleeding, an eye tumor, or a detached retina. All these mentioned eye conditions are severe and shouldn’t be taken lightly. So, if you’re seeing frequent floaters, seek medical attention as soon as possible.
3. Eye Irritation with Persistent Redness
Experiencing eye redness is often harmless. It can sometimes result from staying the late night out with your friends at a party or an allergic reaction to dust, air, or insects. Redness can also happen if you wear your contact lens for longer periods than you intended. This type of redness can often go away on its own or with the help of your eye drops. However, if the redness of your eyes become more frequent, persistent, and comes with pain or irritation even without any contact on dust or insect, it can be a sign of a severe eye infection.
Most often, redness is caused by conjunctivitis or popularly known as pink eye. This condition is very contagious and can be transferred to another person during close contact. Other conditions that eye redness may indicate include glaucoma, uveitis, and corneal scratch. If your eye redness is persistent, don’t hesitate to see your eye specialist immediately.
4. Eye Pain
The most apparent warning for a severe eye problem is eye pain. If you’re doing your daily routine and suddenly your eyes start hurting with extreme, unbearable pain, that’s cause for major concern. If the eye pain lasted for a minute or more, see an eye specialist as soon as possible and have it diagnosed.
Pain in the eyes can be a sign of inflammation or undiagnosed glaucoma. Even if the pain only lasted for a few seconds, but it still happens randomly and more frequently; you should still have it checked. Never try to treat the pain on your own or rinse your eyes with water as a way of reducing the pain, as this may make the situation worse.
5. Blurry Vision
Sometimes, the changes in your vision are not as serious as you may think. For instance, if you’ve been exposed to smoke, wind, and other environmental factors for too long, it may cause your vision to become blurry. Another is if you’re pregnant and you randomly had a blurry vision, it’s often because of the hormonal changes you’re going through. However, if you’re not pregnant and you haven’t had any encounter with environmental factors, and your blurry vision becomes more frequent, it may be a sign of a more severe eye problem.
Blurry vision may be a warning sign of cataracts in which you must have it checked with your eye doctor right away. If you experience blurry vision within the course of minutes, have yourself brought to the emergency room as soon as possible. A severe drop in vision after a blurry one can signify a more serious health illness such as high pressure on your spinal cord or brain or an inflammation of your optic nerve.
Your eyes can be the determiners of your overall health. To ensure your vision is in its optimal function, the best way to treat them is by familiarizing all these signs of eye problems and being proactive in managing them. Whether you’re occasionally experiencing one or two of these signs or occurring more frequently, you need to have your eyes checked the earliest time possible. Remember, it’s always better to be safe than feeling sorry for having paid attention too late.
Jane Harper is a vision expert. She shares her knowledge and expertise through online blogging. Jane is married with two children. She spends most of her leisure time playing with her kids and cooking healthy dishes.