Eye health conditions
it's more than vision
Below are common eye health conditions and diseases which can cause blurred vision, and in some cases lead to severe loss of vision.
Our optometrists are trained to detect, diagnose and manage these eye conditions, as well as other eye health issues. Where necessary, we can also provide referrals to ophthalmologists (eye specialists) for further examination and management.
A cataract is an opacity or yellowing of the eye's natural crystalline lens. Most often occurring with age, cataracts usually develop slowly, gradually making vision more blurry, like looking through a foggy window, and also causes significant glare.
Glaucoma occurs when the optic nerve is damaged by a build up of pressure inside the eye. Over time it causes irreversible loss of peripheral (side) vision. Glaucoma runs in families and a more aggressive type is more common in people of Asian descent.
Macular degeneration (AMD) is a progressive disease of a critical central area of the retina. It causes painless, permanent loss and distortion of central vision. In advanced cases it can affect a person's ability to drive, read, see fine detail and recognise faces.
Diabetes causes blood vessel changes throughout the body, and in the eye it can cause leaky new vessels, bleeding, vision loss and serious complications. An optometrist can sometimes detect diabetes before a patient is aware they have the condition.
Floaters are small protein fibres from the gel-like substance called the vitreous at the back of the eye. They appear as black or grey spots, strands or cobwebs. Large floaters can cause blurred vision. If new floaters occur with flashes of light, have your eyes checked immediately.
Retinal lesions can be serious and lead to permanent vision loss. Retinal detachment, where the retina peels away from the back of the eye, can occur with trauma or age, and people with higher degrees with short-sightedness are at much higher risk.
Eye infections are common, especially in kids. Bacterial conjunctivitis is particularly contagious. Contact lens wearers are also at higher risk of developing infections. Our optometrists are qualified to prescribe medicated drops to treat most eye infections.
Dry eye is a common, sometimes chronic condition, and can occur at any age. It may cause blurred vision that comes and goes. Other symptoms include irritation, redness, stinging or burning sensation, mucus around the eyes, itchy, tired or watery eyes.
A pterigium is a slow, benign growth of the eye's outer membrane onto the cornea, forming a triangular lump of tissue. In more advanced cases it can interfere with vision. It is common in Australia and is associated with exposure to the sun and UV light.