The term blurry vision is self-explanatory. It can happen at any time and can be a temporary condition or indication of something more serious. Often, the effects of blurred vision is felt either after going from dark into light, however, sometimes it can be associated with real health conditions, like diabetes and may be indicative of a more serious eye condition. Most of the times, blurry vision is not a serious issue but can lead to serious problems if not dealt in time. However, when blurred vision is associated with other symptoms such as nausea, extreme fatigue, or severe headaches then one should seek medical attention to be sure that there isn’t something more serious going on.
Macular degeneration is a disorder that affects the retina, the light-sensitive lining at the back of the eye where images are focused. The macula-the area on the retina responsible for sharp central vision-deteriorates, causing blurred vision. This can cause difficulty reading and, for some, a blurry or blind spot in the central area of vision. The most common form of age-related macular degeneration is known as non-exudative, or the "dry" form, in which vision loss usually progresses slowly. More rapid and severe vision loss comes from exudative, or the "wet" form, of macular degeneration. In the wet form, abnormal blood vessels develop under the macula and leak fluid and blood.
Both exudative and non-exudative forms of macular degeneration are age-related. They are the leading cause of blindness in people over 50. Recent studies estimate that over 1.6 million older Americans have age-related macular degeneration. The exact cause is unknown. Although age is the primary contributing factor, cigarette smoking and nutrition can also play a role in the development of age-related macular degeneration. A hereditary juvenile form of macular generation called Stargardt Macular Dystrophy can also cause vision loss.
A cataract is a clouding of part or all the lens inside the eye. This clouding interferes with light reaching the retina at the back of the eye, resulting in a general loss of vision. Causes include aging, long-term exposure to the sun's ultraviolet radiation, injury, disease, and inherited disorders. If the eye is healthy, a cataract can be surgically removed. Usually, an intraocular lens implant is inserted in the eye, and vision is restored. Cataract surgery has a high success rate in otherwise healthy eyes. However, cataract surgery is not always possible for people who also have other eye diseases. These people may require low-vision rehabilitation to maximize their remaining vision.
Glaucoma causes damage to the optic nerve. Most commonly, this occurs due to increasing internal pressure in the eye because of problems with the flow or drainage of fluid within the eye. It can also occur when the internal pressure of the eye does not increase (normal-tension glaucoma), but there is not enough blood flow to the optic nerve. There are no early symptoms in the most common form of glaucoma, but the first signs of damage are defects in side (peripheral) vision and difficulty with night vision. If diagnosed early, it can be treated with drugs, or sometimes surgery can minimize vision loss.