Eye Conditions & Diseases

Dry Eyes

Dry eye occurs when the eye does not produce enough tears or the tears evaporate too quickly. A dry environment, prolonged reading or computer work, contact lens wear, and certain medications are just a few causes of this disruptive condition. Watery eyes, blurry vision, burning sensation and redness are just a few of the symptoms. Dry eye is frequently mistaken for other eye conditions and an eye exam is the first step to the right diagnosis.

Allergies

Austin, Texas is often referred to as the “allergy capital”, and for good reason; we have three distinct pollen seasons. In the fall it’s ragweed, in the winter it’s cedar, and in the spring it’s oak, elm, and pecan. Although the allergens differ among people, the symptoms are all the same: itching, watering, and redness. It is important to get a proper diagnosis because the condition is very manageable with the right treatment.

Diabetes

If you have diabetes you should get your eyes examined at least once a year. High blood sugar can cause blood vessels to leak inside the eye, which can damage the retina. If untreated, this condition can cause severe and permanent blindness. Because of this, control of blood sugar and early detection are key, since early stages of the disease have no visual symptoms. Those with diabetes are also at higher risk for developing glaucoma and cataracts

Glaucoma

Glaucoma is a disease where the optic nerve is slowly damaged and eventually dies. Nobody is sure why or how this happens but high fluid pressure in the eye is often related. It is one of the leading causes of blindness in the U.S. and the damage is usually irreversible. Unfortunately, the damage happens very gradually so is often undetectable by the patient until it is too late. Eye exams are the only way to properly detect and treat the disease.

Cataracts

Cataracts are a normal condition related to aging. They can form at any age but are common in people age 55 and older. A cataract is a clouding of the normally clear lens inside the eye. This causes incoming light to scatter and distorts or reduces vision. Increased glare from lights at night is a common symptom of worsening cataracts. Yearly eye exams are important in order to monitor vision changes and manage treatment options.

Macular Degeneration

Age-related macular degeneration is the leading cause of vision loss in adults over 50. It is caused by damage to certain layers of the retina in the back of your eye. But like many eye conditions, it begins with no symptoms. Over time, central vision becomes blurry or distorted, and will eventually end in blindness if untreated. If detected early, patients can often slow the progression of the condition with specific antioxidant vitamins and regular exercise. Unfortunately, there is no treatment to prevent or reverse vision loss.