Glaucoma is a common eye disease characterized by increased fluid pressure in the eye that damages the optic nerve, which carries visual impulses to the brain. Glaucoma can be caused by another eye disorder, such as a tumor or congenital malformation, or it can appear without obvious cause.
If untreated it generally leads to blindness.Symptoms of glaucoma vary according to the type of glaucoma you have. If you have open-angle glaucoma (OAG), the only symptom you are likely to notice is vision loss. Side (peripheral) vision is usually lost before central vision, which is needed to see details sharply.
You may not notice side vision loss until it becomes severe because the less affected eye makes up for the loss. The loss of sharpness of vision (visual acuity) may not become apparent until late in the disease. By that time, significant vision loss has occurred.
Closed-angle glaucoma (CAG) may cause no apparent symptoms or only mild symptoms. You may experience short episodes of symptoms (subacute closed- angle glaucoma) that usually occur in the evening and are over by morning, or you may have severe (acute) symptoms that require immediate medical attention.
A cataract is a painless, cloudy area in the lens of the eye that blocks the passage of light to the retina. The retina is the nerve layer at the back of the eye. Cataracts usually cause vision problems.
A cataract occurs when the lens of the eye becomes cloudy. Aging and exposure to ultraviolet radiation can cause cataracts.
Changes in the lens of the eye are often a normal part of the aging process and are common in older people, but they do not necessarily lead to cataracts.
Cataracts can also occur after an eye injury, as a result of eye disease, after the use of certain medications, or as a result of medical conditions such as diabetes.
Sometimes children are born with cataracts.
Not all cataracts impair vision or affect daily living.
Presbyopia is the normal worsening of vision with age, especially near vision. As you approach middle age, the lenses in your eyes begin to thicken and lose their flexibility. The ability of the lens to bend allows our eyes to focus on objects at varying distances (accommodation); the loss of this ability means that vision declines and objects cannot be brought into focus.
This generally becomes noticeable some time around age 45 when you realize that you have to hold a book or newspaper farther from your face to focus on it.
Normally, a muscle surrounding the lens in your eye expands or contracts, depending on the distance to the object being focused on. With presbyopia, the muscle still works, but the lens has lost much of its flexibility and won’t bend enough to bring close objects into focus. Images are then focused behind the retina instead of directly on it, leaving close vision blurred. Putting greater distance between the object and your eye brings the object into focus-for example, holding a newspaper farther from your face. For this reason, presbyopia is sometimes called “long-arm syndrome.”
- Wash and rinse your hands before you handle your lens. Clean, rinse, and disinfect your lens each time you remove them.
- Handle your lens with your fingertips, avoiding any contact with your fingernails.
- Apply hair spray before inserting your lens. Apply make-up after inserting your lens.
- Store lens in a leak-proof lens case when they are not being worn, and disinfect before use.
- Clean and disinfect one lens at a time to avoid mixing up the left and right lens.
- Use a lens case that clearly indicates left and right.
- Replace your lens and your lens case on a regular basis – visit your eye practitioner to discuss the most suitable lens replacement schedule for you.
- Keep the caps of your solutions closed when not in use.
- Use solution before expiration date marked on bottle.
- Schedule yearly appointments with your eye care practitioner.
- Do not re-use any lens care solutions.
- Do not use saline to disinfect your lens.
- Do not use eye drops or solutions not intended for use with contact lenses.
- Do not mix any eye medication with lens care solutions except under medical supervision.
- Do not use eye make-up in the inner margin of the eyelids as small particles could be transferred onto the surface of your lens.