Trouble Focusing Eyes: Symptoms and Treatment
September 05 2020
Trouble Focusing Eyes: Symptoms and Treatment
Blurred vision and problems with focusing eyesare the most common ophthalmic symptoms. Most often, it is a result of a gradual decrease in visual clarity.
Causes for Difficulty Focusing Eyes
The most common causes of blurred vision are:
- Refractive errors (the most common cause)
- Age-related macular degeneration
- Diabetic retinopathy
There are four main mechanisms for the development of eyesight focus flaws:
- Clouding of previously transparent refractive media of the eye (cornea, lens, vitreous body)
- Diseases affecting the retina
- Diseases of the optic nerve or its branches
- Refractive errors
Some diseases can have several underlying pathogenetic mechanisms at once. For example, refractive errors can occur from an initial cataract combined with a reversible lens swelling in poorly controlled diabetes.
Patients with certain disorders which cause blurred vision (for example, acute corneal lesions, erosions, corneal ulcers, herpes simplex virus keratitis, herpes zoster with ocular involvement, severe glaucoma) may have other symptoms such as ocular pain and redness of the eye.
Rare diseases leading to the development of blurred vision include hereditary optic neuropathies (dominant optic atrophy, hereditary Leber abiotrophy) and corneal scarring due to vitamin A deficiency.
Why Is it Hard For My Eye to Focus at Close Range?
Eyesight focus problem scan be a sign of severe conditions. However, most commonly, they are due to refractive errors, such as presbyopia and hyperopia.
Presbyopia, or age-related farsightedness, is a decrease in the eye’s ability to focus, which causes a loss of near visual acuity. Presbyopia is one of the most widespread eye focus problems in adult safter 40-45 years of age.
It is due to the loss of elasticity of the natural eye lens located between the cornea and the retina. The lens has a tendency to adjust, that is, to change the focal length. You can imagine it as the zoom in a camera. With age, the lens loses its elasticity and focus, which leads to age-related hyperopia.
People with presbyopia have difficulty focusing on close-up images, resulting in the feeling of an unstable or blurry image.
Here is what you can do to treat the condition:
- From the age of 40, it is recommended to carry out a comprehensive ophthalmological examination every 1-2 years.
- Presbyopia can be corrected with glasses and refractive surgery when associated with other refractive problems or cataracts.
Hyperopia (farsightedness) is another refractive error in the eye that causes trouble focusing vision. It happens as a result of the image of objects focusing not on a specific area of the retina, but the space behind it, leading to blurred vision, especially with nearby objects.
What can you do about farsightedness?
- Hyperopia is easily corrected with glasses or contact lenses.
- If the patient wants to proceed without optical correction, some types of corneal refractive surgery can be used for people with a low degree of hyperopia.
- Another option for patients with a higher degree of defect is phakic lenses between the cornea and the lens.
- For patients over 40-45 years old, the solution may be pseudophakic lenses that replace the natural lens.
Why Are My Eyes Slow to Focus When I Look into the Distance?
In farsightedness cases, patients have a hard time focusing on what is near but can clearly see images in the distance. Even though such a form of the disease as hyperopia is a widespread problem, myopia also requires attention since human safety depends on it.
Nearsightedness is also known as myopia. It is a pathology during which refraction in the eyes begins. During such events, the picture of any object begins to focus not on the retina but in front of it. That is why a person perfectly sees what is in front of him, but has difficulties focusing on objects a few meters away.
Besides the fact that the patients’ eyes can’t focus, doctors note other myopia symptoms, such as:
- Eye soreness
- Pain in the temples
- Poor vision in the dark
- A rapid decrease in vision acuity
Myopia treatment can include corrective transparent or colored lenses, glasses, or laser correction.
Astigmatism often goes hand in hand with myopia (myopic astigmatism) or hyperopia (hyperopic astigmatism). Astigmatism in translation from Latin means the absence of a focal point. Astigmatism occurs due to the irregular (not spherical) shape of the cornea.
In a normal state, the cornea and lens of a healthy eye have a smooth spherical surface. With astigmatism, their sphericity is broken. It has different curvatures in different directions. With astigmatism in different meridians of the cornea surface, there is a different refractive power that distorts the image of an object when light rays pass through such a cornea.
Today, there are three methods for correcting astigmatism:
- Contact lenses for astigmatism
- Excimer laser correction
What Are the Causes of Double Vision in Elderly People?
In ophthalmology, double vision is called diplopia. Diplopia is a condition when a person sees a double outline of the same object. It can be monocular or binocular.
Determining the type of diplopia is relatively simple: the patient has to close one eye – monocular diplopia persists when the unaffected eye is closed. With binocular diplopia, closing either of the eyes leads to the disappearance of complaints.
Monocular diplopia is typically a result of intraocular problems that lead to improper light scattering or “splitting” of the image. Monocular double vision can occur due to:
- Incorrect centering of the eyes
- Differences in refraction between the eyes
- An additional opening in the iris
- Dry eye syndrome
- Lesions of the central nervous system
Binocular double vision is more dangerous and even life-threatening. It is usually a consequence of the following:
- Inconsistency in the movements of the eyeballs
- Limitation of eyeballs mobility due to the pathology of the oculomotor muscles
- Violation of eyeballs’ innervation
- Damage to the central nervous system
Diplopia may lead the patient to have a cloudy, misaligned intraocular lens, astigmatism, keratoconus, corneal opacity, retinal detachment, or pathology in the central zone.
Prevention of Eye Diseases
Eye health highly depends on the person’s overall wellbeing. A healthy lifestyle will help maintain good eyesight. Here are some ways to maintain a healthy state of the vision:
- Protect your eyes with sunglasses
- Monitor your blood sugar
- Control blood pressure and cholesterol levels
- Eat foods rich in antioxidants
- Give up smoking and alcohol
- Take breaks from working at a computer, reading, etc.
Computers are deeply embedded in modern life, so many people spend most of their day in front of a monitor. To prevent the development of myopia and other eye diseases, you should limit the time spent in front of the monitor and take regular breaks. If you feel that your vision can’t focus through out the workday, try the following exercises:
- Turn away from the monitor and blink intensely 10 times as quickly as possible.
- With your eyes closed, move the eyeballs following a number eight pattern, first horizontally, then vertically, five times each.
- Massage your temples at the edge of your eyes in a circular motion with your fingertips (1-2 minutes).
- Fix your gaze on the most distant object within sight (it is better to look out the window as far as possible), then slowly move your gaze to the tip of the nose. Repeat this exercise 10-15 times three times a day while having breaks from the computer.
How to Take Care of a Patient with Vision Problems
A person of any age can get stressed if starting to notice that the eyes will not focus like they used to. For older adults, it can be even more frustrating. Unfortunately, severe problems with vision among seniors are rather common nowadays.
At All American Home Care, we provide caretaking services for people who need physical and psychological support in daily life. Our qualified professionals have been successfully assisting patients for years and surrounding them with genuine care.
If your loved ones have encountered a health problem and require assistance, do not hesitate to contact us now to receive free information on our services!