Reading a nice novel, driving to the office, checking out the news, watching your favorite TV sitcom, playing video games, taking a photograph of a scenic countryside — all of these tasks and so many others are carried out using your eyes. In other words, your vision is something that you cannot afford to lose!

Taking care of your eyes is actually easy. You just have to eat healthy foods (lots of omega-3 fatty acids and vitamins A, C and E), shield your eyes from the sun, read in a room where there’s sufficient lighting, rest your peepers for a few minutes after using the computer for a long time and avoid smoking are some of the things you may do. Definitely, it is very important to check your family history of eye diseases and visit your eye doctor regularly.

Part of the strategy is being familiar with some of the most common problems associated with the eyes and vision. Knowing some of these diseases — what they are, who are at risk, what symptoms they bring and how they can b dodges — allows you to realize how easy it is to lose your vision if you do not take good care of your eyes.

The following are conditions that you have to be on the lookout for if you value your purported windows to the soul:

Acute Red Eye

This involves the reddening of the whites of the eyes due to the dilatation of the blood vessels in the area, usually brought about by irritation or an infection. Usually, acute red eye is due to conjunctivitis. Also known as pink eye, it’s something that refers to the inflammation of the conjunctiva, the clear lining of the eyelids and covering of the eyeball.

Cataracts

As you age, the clear part of the eye where light enters called the lens may end up cloudy. This is known in the medical world as a cataract. An eye disease that progresses slowly, it can cause the blurring of vision. Aside from the use of prescription glasses or contact lenses, the only treatment that can put an end to cataracts is surgery. In this procedure, the cloudy lens of the affected eye is removed and replaced with an artificial one.

Glaucoma

Experts say that this is the leading cause of blindness. Glaucoma is a condition wherein the pressure inside the eyes is increased, leading to impaired vision. It is important for this condition to be diagnosed and treated early on to have the vision saved. People at risk are those who are over 50 years old and have a family history of glaucoma.

Graves’ Disease

This is an autoimmune disease that can have a negative impact on the eyes and vision. Graves’ disease causes the eye muscles to collect fluid, thus leaving the eyeballs protruding. This may leave the sufferer to have a hard time blinking and closing their eyes, causing dryness, irritation and inflammation. The pressure applied by the swollen eye muscles on the optic nerve may lead to vision loss if not treated right away.

Macular Degeneration

It is said that macular degeneration is one of the leading causes of loss of vision. This disease involves the degeneration of the macula, which is the central portion of the retina situated at the back of the eyes. As the sufferer ages, macular degeneration tends to worsen. It causes symptoms such as blurring of the central vision and diminished color perception.

Optic Neuropathy

This condition involves the inflammation of the optic nerves, the bundle of fibers that sends signals from the eyes to the brain. Optic neuropathy usually involves pain as well as temporary loss of vision. The good news is it tends to go away on its own. The bad news is optic neuropathy is commonly associated with multiple sclerosis (MS) which is a disease characterized by damage to the protective covering of the nerves in the brain and spinal cord.

Retinal Detachment

Just like what the name implies, it involves the detachment of the retina from the structure beneath it. Someone who is suffering from it may end up with vision loss and blindness if the retina ends up completely detached. That is why immediate treatment is warranted for this eye condition.

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