COMMON EYE CONDITIONS

This section provides information about the most common eye conditions, their symptoms and what you can do about them.

Astigmatism

‘A-stig-ma-tism’ is a common optical imperfection of the eye. It often causes a blur at all distances so people with moderate to severe astigmatism need to wear their spectacles or contact lenses throughout the day. There are many options for correction and we will be happy to discuss these with you. Don’t forget, people with astigmatism can also have contact lenses!

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Binocular Anomalies (“lazy eye”)

A squint, or strabismus is a misalignment of the eyes. Strabismus is also called “wandering eye” or “crossed-eyes.” It results from failure of the external muscles of the eye that control eye movement to work together. Around 50 percent of children with strabismus are born with this mis-alignment of the eyes. Strabismus seems to occur within families. Siblings and children of an individual with strabismus may have an increased chance to develop this mis-alignment, however, a single inherited cause has not been identified. Eyes with a squint often develop Amblyopia or a ‘lazy eye’ where the vision does not fully develop. Both squints and amblyopia can be treated if detected early. If you feel your child has developed a turn in their eye (either intermittently or constantly), please contact your eye-care professional for a full ophthalmic examination.

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Long-sightedness (Hyperopia)

People who have hyperopia or farsightedness find it difficult to see things at near distances. The earliest sign of hyperopia is difficulty with prolonged close work. We offer a number of options ranging from the very latest fashionable spectacles with ultra-light, thin lenses through to contact lenses.

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Vision after 40 – (Presbyopia)

We have several options for you when it comes to managing presbyopia. The most important aspect we concentrate on is in understanding your visual requirements. From this we will be able to prescribe one of the very many multifocal spectacle lenses or even multifocal contact lenses. New freeform technology in spectacle lens design means that we can now manufacture multifocal spectacle lenses that are optimally designed for your vision. The result is clear wide fields of comfortable viewing. Multifocal spectacle lenses are available in variable tint and also ultra-thin, light designs.

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Short-sightedness (Myopia)

People who have myopia or nearsightedness find it difficult to see things far away. The earliest sign of myopia is difficulty with night driving. We offer a number of options for you ranging from the very latest fashionable spectacles with ultra-light, thin lenses through to contact lenses.

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Blepharitis

Blepharitis is a common condition that affects the eyelids. It can make your eyes red, irritated and itchy. You may see dandruff-like crusts forming at the base of the eye lashes, redness at the lid margins or yellow ‘dots’ at the margin or the lids. Blepharitis is a chronic condition, meaning that once it develops you will most likely have repeated episodes. There is no cure, however, there are a range of treatments that can control the symptoms. The most important one is to establish a daily eye-cleaning routine. Complications of blepharitis include dry eye, styes and conjunctivitis.

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Dry Eyes

Dry eye is a condition where for several reasons, the eye has insufficient tears to lubricate and nourish the front of the eye. Tears are essential for maintaining the health of the front surface of the eye and for providing clear vision. People with dry eyes either do not produce enough tears or have poor quality of tears. Dry eye is a common and often chronic problem that increases with age. As our eyelids blink, tears are spread across the front surface of the eye. Not only do tears lubricate the eye, they also reduce the risk of eye infection, wash away debris and keep the eye’s surface smooth and clear. Sometimes dry eye can also result in the production of excess tears causing “watery eyes”.

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Pterygia

A Pterygium is a benign growth of the conjunctiva. A pterygium commonly grows from the nasal side of the sclera (the white of the eye). It is thought to be caused by ultraviolet-light exposure (e.g. sunlight), low humidity, and dust. Pterygia may cause irritation which is often relieved by using artificial tears. Surgical removal is not usually advised unless the Pterygium grows over the pupil (which obscures vision).

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Cataracts

Cataracts are the most common cause of vision loss in the over 50’s. However, there is growing evidence regarding the effect of ultraviolet light in the formation of cataract. As professional eye-care providers we have a number of options for you in protecting your eyes against the harmful effects of ultraviolet light. Most people talk about ultraviolet eye protection and think only about sunglasses, however, we can also provide ultraviolet protection with some of the latest contact lenses.

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Diabetes & Eye Disease

Diabetic retinopathy is the most common diabetic eye disease and one of the leading causes of blindness in the adult population. Diabetic retinopathy usually affects both eyes. Both type 1 or type 2 diabetics are at risk of developing diabetic retinopathy. As a result, everyone with diabetes should have a comprehensive dilated retinal examination around once a year. Performing a dilated retinal examination, vision assessment and measurement of your eye pressure has shown to be highly effective in the detection of diabetic retinopathy and maculopathy. The longer you have diabetes, the greater the chances of getting diabetic retinopathy. However, in order to protect your vision you should try to keep your blood sugar under control – please consult your physician for advice relating to the correct blood sugar for you as an individual. In addition, controlling your blood pressure and cholesterol can also reduce the risk of vision loss associated with diabetic retinopathy. Laser treatment and appropriate follow-up care can reduce the risk of blindness by 90 percent. However, laser treatment may not restore vision that has already been lost. Detecting diabetic retinopathy early is the best way to prevent vision loss – always attend for annual eye examinations.

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Flashes & Floaters

In the majority of cases, longstanding floaters in front your vision is not a cause for concern. However, sudden onset should always be investigated. Our fully qualified eye-care practitioner will be able to advise you of the cause after an extensive ophthalmic examination.

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Glaucoma

Our practitioner will ask you a number of questions during your initial consultation in order to assess your risk of glaucoma. From here Adam will plan a detailed course of investigation that will enable him to confidently detect glaucoma. The Eye Place houses the latest in equipment and Adam regularly attends leading professional and scientific conferences so he can keep abreast with the latest technologies and techniques to facilitate the earliest possible detection.

 

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Macular Degeneration

You can do something to protect your vision from the harmful effects of macular degeneration or AMD. Eating foods such as Kale, Green Peas and Broccoli can help slow the progression of AMD. It is advisable that if you have a family history of AMD, or have AMD in one eye, that you take Macular supplements which contain the correct amount of Lutein and Zeaxanthin. Additionally, you should also wear full-framed UV protecting sunglasses.

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