The eyes are the windows to our health. That saying is especially true when it comes to ophthalmology, which is the study of the eye and its diseases. The eye encompasses many parts that work together in a very complex way, so it’s no wonder that certain issues can be indicators of more widespread health problems. In this article, Dr. David Stager will give you a crash course on common eye problems as well as how they could be connected with other issues throughout your body.
The importance of eye health
The eyes are the window to your brain. They’re also a window into your overall health. The eyes can be affected by other conditions that may not be apparent on the surface, so it’s important for a comprehensive eye exam every year or two.
Eye health is an important part of overall health because it can reveal underlying issues in other areas of our bodies, like heart disease and diabetes.
Pupils that are not the same size
If your pupils are not the same size, this is called anisocoria. The most common cause of anisocoria is Horner’s syndrome, which affects 1 in 10 people with a normal eye exam. In Horner’s syndrome, one side of your face (and sometimes other parts) will feel numb or tingly; you might also have trouble coughing or swallowing properly on that side as well.
In some cases where there is no underlying health condition present and both eyes are healthy, it may simply be a genetic variation where one pupil just happens to be larger than the other. If you notice that one eye seems bigger than another but otherwise feels fine without any other symptoms besides having two different-sized pupils–or if you’re concerned about how these changes could impact your vision–it’s worth talking with an ophthalmologist who can give advice based on an examination of both eyes.
Eye problems in seniors
There are many eye problems that affect seniors. Seniors are more likely to have eye problems than younger people, and the most common causes include diabetes, glaucoma and cataracts.
Eye problems in seniors can be a sign of other health issues as well as an indication that you need a checkup from your doctor. If you notice any changes in how well you see or if something feels wrong with your eyesight, see an ophthalmologist right away! Many eye conditions can be treated if they’re caught early enough.
Bags under the eyes
Bags under the eyes can be a result of many things, including poor sleeping habits and allergies. It’s also common for people with stress to experience puffiness in this area, as well as fatigue. If you’re experiencing bags that don’t go away after several days to weeks, consider speaking with your doctor about other possible causes such as high blood pressure or anemia (a serious illness).
Lid irregularities in children
In children, the most common lid abnormality is ptosis, which refers to drooping of one or both eyelids. Lid abnormalities in children can also include ectropion (turning out) and entropion (turning in).
These conditions are caused by congenital factors, trauma and/or infection.
Treatment options depend on the type of lid abnormality present but may include surgery or medication management by an ophthalmologist (eye doctor).
Seeing spots and flashes
The problem. Seeing spots and flashes is a common vision problem that can be caused by many different conditions. The most common cause of this symptom is a retinal detachment, which occurs when there’s a break in the retina (the light-sensitive inner lining of your eye). This leads to fluid buildup behind the retina and makes it lift away from its normal position.
If you experience seeing spots or flashing lights in one eye, contact your doctor immediately–the sooner treatment begins, the better your chances are for recovery!
The eyes can be a window to health problems elsewhere in the body.
The eyes can be a window to health problems elsewhere in the body. For example, cataracts are a clouding of the lens that blocks light from passing through it, making it difficult for you to see clearly. Cataracts may develop slowly over time or suddenly after an injury or infection. They tend to occur more often as people age because of changes in their genes and environment (such as ultraviolet light).
Cataracts are not just an inconvenience–they can also be dangerous if they cause your vision to become so blurry that you can’t drive safely or walk without tripping over things. Because they’re caused by aging, many people think they have no control over whether they get cataracts; however, some factors seem linked with an increased risk: smoking cigarettes; using steroids like prednisone (for asthma) or cortisone (for arthritis); being exposed regularly at work where there’s no ventilation system due to dust particles floating around; or having diabetes mellitus type 1 & 2 for long periods without treatment
The eyes are the window to our health. They can tell us if there is something wrong with our bodies and give us an early warning sign before other symptoms appear. The best way to maintain good eye health is through regular checkups with an ophthalmologist who can detect any problems before they become serious enough for us to notice them ourselves.