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There are many diseases and problems related to the eye but here are the most common. See more information on all of these diseases in the Eyehealth Links of this website.

Age-related Macular Degeneration
An estimated 13 million Americans have signs of this sight-threatening disease, the world's number-one cause of blindness. Treatment options, sadly, are limited. People that have this disease lose their central vision but still have some or limited peripheral vision.

A cataract is a clouding of the eye's lens which usually occurs as one ages due to protein changes in the eye. When the vision is obstructed to the point where it interferes with daily routines, cataract surgery is recommended.

Conjunctivitis (pink eye)
Inflammation due to a virus or bacteria in the outer membrane of the eye can cause redness, swelling, itching and tearing. It can be infectious and spread to the other eye or family members.

Diabetic Retinopathy
Changes occur in the eye when high blood sugar levels due to diabetes are not controlled properly. In late stages of diabetes, new blood vessels form around the capillaries in your retina which can lead to scar tissue that can eventually lead to retinal detachment.

Dry Eyes
Sometimes the eye doesn't produce enough tears, or the tears have a chemical composition that causes them to evaporate too quickly. This is usually most noticeable with contact lens wearers.

Glaucoma causes chronic damage to the optic nerve and a gradually diminished field of vision. Drops every day and sometimes surgery are necessary to keep the eye pressure down.

Age Related Macular Degeneration
Many researchers and optometrists believe that antioxidant vitamins, such as beta carotene (vitamin A) and vitamins C and E, may protect the macula from damage. Reducing blood pressure, stop smoking and losing weight are other ways to lower the chances of macula degeneration.

Wearing good sunglasses, avoiding cigarette smoke, air pollution and heavy alcohol consumption can reduce chances of cataracts. Many researchers also believe that a diet high in antioxidants such as beta carotene (vitamin A), selenium and vitamins C and E may slow down cataracts.

Avoiding viral and bacterial conjunctivitis includes washing hands frequently and avoid touching or rubbing your eyes. Don't share washcloths, towels or cosmetics that are used near the eyes with others.

Dry Eyes
Sometimes dry eyes are caused by medications such as antihistamines, birth control pills or cold medications. Avoiding or changing medications can sometimes help. Using over the counter lid scrubs or a Q-tip dipped in baby shampoo to wash the eyelids can also help with dry eyes.

The very best way to prevent glaucoma is early detection with frequent eye examinations especially for those at higher risk.


Myopia (Nearsightedness)
This occurs when the eyeball length is too long causing the focus of light to fall short of the retina. This causes the vision to be fuzzy in the distance and clear up close. Glasses, contact lenses or refractive surgery can correct myopia.

Hyperopia (Farsightedness)
This occurs when the eyeball length is too short causing the focus of light to fall behind the retina. This causes the vision to be fuzzy up close but still clear in the distance. Glasses, contact lenses or refractive surgery can correct hyperopia.

This condition causes blurred vision sometimes both in the distance and near and is due to an irregularly shaped cornea. The front surface of the eye isn't spherical like a basketball but is more shaped like a football with one meridian steeper and the other flatter. Glasses, contact lenses or refractive surgery can correct astigmatism.

This happens to those in their 40s and older when the lens (which does all the focusing) within the eye loses its elasticity and can no longer focus as well. Glasses and contact lenses can help, and maybe soon there will be surgery options, too.



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