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Blurred Vision 101: Optometrist Facts & Emergency Signs

We’ve spoken with our award winning optometrists to bring you the quick facts on blurry vision, how it relates to bloodshot and red eyes, what you need to know to keep your vision safe, and when it’s time to search for an ‘eye test near me’ to ensure timely diagnosis and appropriate treatment. 

Quick Facts: Blurred Vision

Blurred vision is a common visual problem that can affect people of all ages. It can be accompanied by symptoms of red or bloodshot eyes, which can indicate the presence of underlying eye disorders. Blurred vision is a type of visual impairment that results in a loss of sharpness and clarity. People with foggy vision commonly report difficulty focusing on objects or seeing fine details. 

This can affect one or both eyes at the same time, be momentary or persistent, and it can be caused by a variety of factors, including refractive errors, eye muscle imbalances, or underlying eye conditions.

Read on to learn the difference between a visual annoyance and a major problem.

Optometrist Warning

Blurred vision can be a temporary inconvenience caused by various factors, but when it persists or worsens over time, it may indicate more serious underlying conditions. One common cause of long-term blurry vision is myopia, or nearsightedness, where distant objects appear blurry. However, it’s crucial not to overlook the potential connection between blurred vision and more severe health issues. 

In some cases, blurry vision can be a symptom of a stroke, retinal detachment, or even a warning sign of a brain tumor. Therefore, it is imperative to prioritize your visual health and seek professional medical attention if you experience persistent or progressive blurry vision.

The Relationship Between Blurred Vision & Red Eye

Blurred vision can be accompanied with red or bloodshot eyes. When the blood vessels on the surface of the eye dilate or become inflamed, they turn red and cause the eyes to seem bloodshot. This can be caused by a variety of reasons, such as eye strain, dryness, allergies, conjunctivitis (also known as pink eye), or eye infections.

Blurred Vision

Common Red Eyes Causes

Red eyes alone doesn’t always mean it’s time to find an eye exam near you. Short-term exposure to smoke and dust, as well as living in a dry atmosphere, allergies, eye fatigue, over-wearing contact lenses, and discomfort caused by a lack of eye moisture, are the most prevalent causes of red eyes. 

That being said, it’s critical to understand that impaired vision and red eyes can be related, as some eye disorders can induce both symptoms at the same time. Red eyes can be an indicator of a more serious underlying eye condition, such as uveitis, or glaucoma

Eye Emergency vs. Red Eyes: Who to Contact

Unsure whether immediate or emergency assistance is required? Contact your optometrist’s office as soon as possible. A skilled optometrist can assess your symptoms, establish the cause, and provide the best treatment options for you.  There is no need to live with blurred vision, light sensitivity, eye discharge, or the many other related symptoms. 

Eye Strain Symptoms Red Eyes

If your red eyes are accompanied by additional symptoms like sudden vision loss, headaches, or pain behind the eyes, you should see your optometrist or go to the emergency room right away.

Importance of an Eye Test Near You

When coping with impaired vision and red eyes, finding an ‘eye test near me’ is critical. Regular eye exams are important for more than just updating your prescription glasses; they are also important for your general health. As we age, our eyes change naturally, making comprehensive eye exams even more important.

These exams, in addition to testing visual acuity, can detect early indicators of major health issues such as diabetes, hypertension, and even certain types of cancer. 

By diagnosing the causes of blurred vision in their early phases, eye exams constitute an important tool in preventing irreversible vision loss. So much so that, if diagnosed early, the majority of visual disorders can be effectively handled or avoided. So, give yourself the gift of clear eyesight and overall well-being by prioritizing your eye health and scheduling frequent eye exams.

Final Optometrist Advice

Of course you’d expect an optometrist to remind contact lens or glasses wearers of the importance of regular eye examinations, but in truth comprehensive eye exams are critical for everyone. Seriously

To emphasize the seriousness of maintaining optimal eye health, here are 6 shocking eye facts:

  1. Vision is so crucial to humans that it takes up over half of your brain’s capacity.
  2. The muscles that move your eyes are the most active in your body.
  3. Your eyes may become sunburned. Photokeratitis causes the corneal epithelium to slough off, similar to how skin peels after a sunburn.
  4. Cataracts are the leading cause of blindness in the world and affect more than 24 million Americans over the age of 40. 
  5. 23% of drivers have uncorrected vision problems worldwide
  6. Children’s eyes are especially vulnerable to UV damage, with 80% of all UV exposure occurring before the age of 18.

Sources: EssilorUSA, Wigtoney Eye Care

Dr. Amit Sahota
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