Although everyone likes to stay young and healthy, the universal truth is that all of us get old. Along with this, our organ functions also start deteriorating. Most commonly, old age affects our eyes. There are several ocular diseases whose incidence increases with age. These include glaucoma, cataract, presbyopia and other refractive errors, to name a few. After the fourth decade of your life , doctors recommend that you have an eye examination once every 2 years. Not only that , it is important that you stay well informed and are aware of the different symptoms of deteriorating eye-sight that will occur with old age. So here we help you by giving you 7 vital symptoms:
You might sometimes notice that your vision seems dim or inadequate even when you are using the our spectacles or your contact lens. You may have difficulty reading, using your phone or even just seeing the things around you. If this has happened to you, it may be a symptom of cataract. Cataract refers to the opacification of lens fibres due to which your lenses lose their transparency and may appear whitish. Because of this, light is unable to pass through your lens to the retinal layer, and your vision becomes unclear. However, this is a common process occurring in the lens during old age. If recognised early, the treatment is rather easy. The doctor will simply perform a cataract surgery such as SICS or phacoemulsification and replace your lens with a clear plastic intraocular lens. However, if not treated on time, it can progress to lens-induced glaucoma.
Black spots(floaters) or black curtain across your field of vision
Floaters or black spots in your field of vision are the most common presentation of vitreous detachment. It is a benign, age related condition in which the gel-like vitreous humour within your eye liquifies and gets detached from the retinal layer. Since the retina is the light sensitive layer of the eye, such black spots are seen.
Sometimes, you might get the sensation of a dark curtain settling on your field of vision. This is a very important symptom of retinal detachment in which the two layers of your retina get separated from one another. This can be treated by reattaching the layers but must be done within a few hours! Otherwise, you might lose your vision permanently.
Double vision or double images
Sometimes, double images may be formed when you are trying to look at any object. in medical terms, this is called diplopia and can be caused by several eye conditions such as:
- dry eyes
- herpes zoster infections
- Grave’s diseases
- diabetic retinopathy
- myasthenia gravis
- Guillain-Barre syndrome
Sometimes, it may be a symptom of a brain aneurysm or stroke. This is a medical emergency and if it appears suddenly, you should go see your doctor immediately!
Sudden blind spot in one eye
This is the symptom of a macular hole. As the name suggests, it is a break in the macula(the most sensitive part of the retina). They often present as blind spots or greyish areas in your field of vision. These are more common in people over 60 years and if you have such symptoms, go see your doctor quickly. This is because if macular holes are not treated on time they might lead to permanent blindness.
The appearance of gray,blurry it distorted spots in your vision in turn point towards a diagnosis of macular degeneration.
Narrowed field of vision or colored halos
Glaucoma is a condition in which increased intraocular pressure in your eyes causes damage to your optic nerve. It’s chances of development heighten with increasing age. If you have ever felt like you are unable to see objects off the sides of your eyes, this may be a symptom of glaucoma. In some variants of glaucoma, you might see colored halos when looking at a light source.
Sudden eye pain accompanied by redness, nausea and vomiting
If you happen to experience these symptoms, get to the emergency ward! You may be suffering from an acute attack of narrow-angle glaucoma. If not treated on time, this can cause permanent damage to your optic nerve and subsequent vision loss.
Sometimes, you might just have red eyes without nausea and vomiting. This may be due to dry eye syndrome which is common in old age because you generally produce less tears in old age. Using artificial tear drops might help in this regard.
Poor night vision and less vivid colour vision
These symptoms also suggest a diagnosis of cataract. This is because due to the opacification of your lens, light rays are unable to pass through. And you might have guessed, during the nighttime when there is generally less light, your vision can become really poor. Sometimes though, night blindness may be a symptom of vitamin A deficiency- so make sure you are consuming adequate amounts of dark green leafy vegetables. You might also experience colored halos(incase of immature cataracts)and diminished colour vision. Therefore, make an appointment on time and get a cataract surgery done before you develop vision-threatening complications.