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Friday, March 25, 2011

Eye Disorders

Approximately 11 million Americans 12 years and older could improve their vision through proper refractive correction. There are more than 3.3 million Americans over the age of 40 who are legally blind.

Refractive errors are the most common eye problem in the United States. Refractive errors include nearsightedness, farsightedness, astigmatism (distorted vision at all distances), and presbyopia that occurs between age 40-50 years (loss of the ability to focus up close). These problems can be corrected by eyeglasses, contact lenses and sometimes surgery.

Macular Degeneration is an eye disorder that is associated with aging and it affects sharp and central vision. Macular degeneration affects the macula, which is the central part of the retina. The central part of the eye allows us to see fine details and it is important for reading and driving.

Cataract is clouding of the eye’s lens and is the leading cause of blindness worldwide. Cataracts can happen at any age, but it is estimated that there are more than 20.5 million Americans aged 40 or older who have cataracts in one or both eyes.

Diabetic retinopathy is a common complication of diabetes and it is the leading cause of blindness in Americans. Diabetic retinopathy causes damage to the blood vessels in the eye that progressively gets worse over time.

Glaucoma is a group of diseases that cause damage to the optic nerve that leads to vision loss and blindness. The two major types of glaucoma are open angle and closed angle. Open angle glaucoma occurs gradually and the person who has it doesn’t notice that they are losing vision until the disease has progressed too far. Closed angle glaucoma happens quickly and it is painful, so people who suffer from that usually seek medical attention before the disease progresses too far.

Amblyopia is also called lazy eye and is the most common vision impairment in children. Amblyopia is the medical term that is used when the vision in one eye is reduced when the brain and the eye don’t communicate properly.

Strabismus is when there is an imbalance it the eyes and the eyes look in different directions. This causes loss of depth perception and the brain may learn to ignore the input from one eye.

For more details on these eye disorders, visit the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) Common Eye Disorders page.

Other links:

Healthy Eyes (National Eye Institute)

Signs of Eye Problems in Adults (Prevent Blindness America)


  1. Thanks for classified these various eye disorders. Some of them are really dangerous.

  2. These tips are amazing and very down-to-earth. Much of it seemed like common sense, but, it was brilliant to hear it from someone who has been through it all. Thanks for taking the time to share this great advice with the world!