Blurry vision can affect people of all ages, causing them to view objects as unclear and indistinct. The condition may affect one eye or both, depending on what causes it. Occasionally, those with blurred vision will view everything as blurry. Other times, only a part of their field of vision is affected. Nevertheless, many often dismiss the issue as a minor inconvenience caused by tiredness.
While fatigue can be a factor, blurred vision can also be a symptom of underlying eye conditions. Therefore, it is recommended to consult an eye specialist if blurred vision comes on suddenly. Let us examine the possible causes of blurry vision and the available treatments to help you regain clarity in your eyesight.
What causes blurry vision?
Blurry vision is a common symptom with many potential causes. Often, the triggers are minor, like fatigue or dry eyes. However, blurry vision can sometimes be a symptom of a more significant underlying medical condition.
Cause #1: Refractive errors
Refractive errors, such as astigmatism, farsightedness, and nearsightedness, are one of the primary culprits of blurry vision. These disorders occur when the shape of the eye does not allow light to focus correctly on the retina, resulting in blurred images.
Cause #2: Dry eye syndrome
Dry eye syndrome is a condition in which the eyes do not produce sufficient tears or have poor-quality tears. The syndrome can cause itching, redness, pain, and, you guessed it, blurry vision.
Cause #3: Cataracts
Cataracts are common with age, although they can also develop due to various factors. When cataracts form, the eye lenses become clouded and opaque (challenging to see through), resulting in blurry vision and loss of contrast. Those with the condition may also notice halos around lights when it is dark.
Cause #4: Age-related macular degeneration
Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is a progressive eye disease affecting the macula, the central part of the retina. It is one of the most common causes of vision loss in older Singaporeans. The condition can affect one or both eyes, leading to blurred or distorted central vision, making it challenging to recognise faces or read.
Cause #5: Diabetic retinopathy
Those with diabetes may experience diabetic retinopathy, which damages the blood vessels in the retina, causing blurry vision and floaters. Diabetic eye care is essential, as this condition can cause blindness if left untreated.
Cause #6: Glaucoma
Glaucoma refers to a group of eye conditions characterised by fluid buildup in the eye, placing increased pressure on the optic nerve. Glaucoma awareness and proper treatment are essential, as the damage to the optic nerve can result in gradual vision loss, including blurry vision, and blindness.
Learn More: An Insight into Common Eye Conditions
How is blurry vision treated?
Treatment for blurry vision depends on what is causing the issue. An eye specialist will conduct various eye tests and a physical examination of your eyes to obtain an accurate diagnosis. With this information, they can prescribe the appropriate treatment to help you regain clarity in your eyes. Treatment may include:
Treatment #1: Corrective glasses or contact lenses
Refractive errors are often corrected with prescription eyeglasses or contact lenses. These products can help redirect incoming light onto the retina properly, providing clear vision.
Treatment #2: Medication
The medication prescribed to treat the condition causing blurry vision will vary depending on your underlying disease. For example, dry eye management often includes the use of artificial tears (eye drops, gels, or ointments that lubricate the eyes). Eye drops may also be recommended for refractive errors like presbyopia.
Treatment #3: Surgery
In cases of cataracts or specific refractive errors, an eye specialist may recommend you undergo a surgical procedure, like LASIK or cataract surgery, to address the underlying issue, thus restoring clear vision and improving your eyesight.
Fortunately, you can prevent blurry vision with appropriate eye care. During sunny days, shield your eyes from UV light by wearing sunglasses or a hat, and wear protective eyewear if you are performing hazardous work to protect your eyes from injury. Additionally, it is recommended to visit an optometrist for regular eye checkups every two years.
If you experience persistent blurry vision or any vision problem, please consult our eye specialist at Nova Eye Centre to determine the cause and develop an appropriate treatment plan. With over two decades of clinical experience, Dr Eugene Tay offers a wide range of eye care services. Contact our eye centre to schedule an appointment with us today.