Eye Care

Common Eye Conditions And Its Treatments

Whether you’re experiencing mild or serious symptoms, it’s always best to see an eye doctor to ensure proper treatment. Here are some of the most common eye conditions and their treatments from Eye Doctor Ellicott City MD:

eye care


The clear membrane that lines your eyelids and covers the white part of your eyes is called the conjunctiva. When this becomes swollen or inflamed, it causes the eyes to turn red and produce discharge. This can be due to infection, an irritant, or dry eyes. Most kinds of conjunctivitis are not serious, but you should see a doctor to confirm the diagnosis and determine what is causing it.

Pinkeye (conjunctivitis) is common in young children and spreads quickly through schools and daycare centers. It’s also highly contagious, so it may run rampant in a classroom or school playground. But it’s usually not serious, and most people who get it recover without any lasting problems.

Your doctor can usually diagnose conjunctivitis with a careful history and physical examination. He or she will ask you about your symptoms, including whether your eyes are itchy and what type of discharge you have. Your doctor will also check for other signs of health problems like a common cold, asthma, or hay fever.

Treatment for conjunctivitis varies depending on what’s causing it. Rinsing your eyes with saline solution is helpful for some kinds of chemical pink eye, and topical steroids are available to treat other types. For bacterial pink eye, your doctor may prescribe antibiotics in the form of drops or ointment, used three to four times per day for five to seven days.

Refractive Errors

Refractive error occurs when the shape of your eye prevents light from focusing properly on the retina (the light-sensitive layer at the back of the eye). This can lead to blurred vision. The most common refractive errors are myopia (nearsightedness), hyperopia (farsightedness), and astigmatism (distorted vision at different distances). These can be corrected by eyeglasses, contact lenses, or surgery. Refractive errors affect more than 150 million citizens.

Some of the symptoms of refractive error include blurred vision for distant or near objects, double vision, squinting, and headache. Symptoms can become more noticeable with age, especially after 40 when you start to lose your ability to focus close-up.

An organization is funding research into refractive errors to understand how they occur. This is important because it helps us develop prevention techniques and better treatments. We recommend everyone gets their eyes tested every two years, even if you think your vision is fine. Screening children for visual acuity and refraction (determining the refractive error) is particularly important because many eye problems start in childhood. This can be done using either subjective or objective tests, such as a chart at a distance and with letters, numbers, or pictures. A handheld device called an autorefractor or a retinoscope with trial lenses can also be used to obtain an objective measurement of the eye’s refractive error. The more accurate this measurement is, the more accurate your prescription will be.


Nicknamed the ‘sneak thief of sight’, this is a slowly progressive condition that causes damage to the delicate optic nerve located at the back of your eye. It gradually destroys your peripheral vision until there is severe and irreversible loss of it. It’s an important reason to have a regular dilated eye exam with your ophthalmologist. It’s the leading cause of irreversible blindness in the world, so it’s important to catch glaucoma early.

Glaucoma is caused by a build-up of pressure in the eye due to fluids not draining properly. Over time this leads to a rise in eye pressure, which damages the optic nerve and causes loss of vision. There are 2 main types of glaucoma, primary open-angle glaucoma and acute angle-closure glaucoma. The most common form of the disease, POAG, usually develops slowly without any symptoms until vision is lost. Acute angle-closure glaucoma is more sudden and can be very painful with nausea and vomiting, headache, watery eyes, blurred vision, and halos around lights.

It is not clear what causes this type of glaucoma, although some people are at high risk of developing it because of certain medical conditions, medications, or eye injuries. Other factors that can increase your risk of developing glaucoma include being older, having a family history of the disease, and having diabetes or high blood pressure.

Macular Degeneration

Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is the leading cause of serious vision loss for people over 60. It slowly destroys your sharp, central vision which makes it difficult to read, drive, or do other tasks that require fine central vision. It also causes your straight lines to look wavy and blurry. But it never causes complete blindness because your peripheral (side) vision remains normal.

The disease occurs when the light-sensitive tissue at the back of your eye (the retina) gets thinner and loses its ability to send signals to your brain. Over time, you may notice that straight lines appear wavy or blurry. You may also experience difficulty recognizing faces, driving, or noticing colors. The most common form of ARMD is called dry macular degeneration or non-neovascular AMD. The less common wet or neovascular form of AMD can lead to faster vision loss as abnormal blood vessels grow and leak fluid underneath your retina.

If you have wet macular degeneration, you can slow or even halt further damage to your vision by getting regular injections of the “anti-VEGF” medicines Beovu(r), Eylea(r), Lucentis(r), and Avastin(r) into your eye every month or two. You will have to visit your ophthalmologist regularly for these injections. Other treatments include laser treatment which seals and destroys the leaking blood vessels. There are also dietary supplements available including fish and walnuts which can help reduce the risk of macular degeneration.


Nystagmus is an eye condition that causes a rhythmic, side-to-side movement of the eyes. The movements affect vision, depth perception, and balance. They can drift in a circle (rotary or torsional nystagmus), jerk in one direction and then drift in the opposite direction (jerk nystagmus), or move back and forth in a pendulum-like motion (pendular nystagmus).

Nystagmus can be caused by an illness, injury, or certain drugs. It can also be hereditary. Congenital nystagmus, which is present at birth or in early childhood, may be a result of a disease in the brain or inner ears or it may occur for unknown reasons. Acquired nystagmus, which develops later in life, can be caused by an illness or injury to the head or eyes, by a metabolic disorder, or by alcohol and drug abuse.

Usually, the nystagmus lessens over time in children with congenital nystagmus without treatment. In some cases, doctors can perform a surgery called a tenotomy to alter the position of the muscles that control eye movements. This can reduce the amplitude of nystagmus and help people see better. Glasses can also be used to improve sight in people with nystagmus but they won’t cure it. People with nystagmus can learn to find the direction of their null zone, which is the point in their gaze where the movement is slowest and most stable. They can then use this information to focus their attention on objects and improve their vision.

Color Blindness

There are many different types of color blindness, but the basic definition is that some part of your eye’s color-sensing system isn’t working correctly. Typically, the problem occurs in the retina (the light-sensitive layer of tissue that lines the back and sides of your eyeball). Your retina contains two kinds of cells: rods, which are responsible for night vision; and cones, which are used for daytime vision, including color perception. Normally, your eyes have three types of cones: one that absorbs wavelengths of blue violet, another that absorbs green wavelengths, and a third that absorbs red wavelengths. When all three types work properly, the result is normal color vision, which is called trichromacy or trichromatism.

If one or more of these cone types don’t function correctly, the result is hereditary color blindness, which can occur in men and women equally. There are also forms of color blindness that can affect only one type of cone or none at all. Dichromacy means that you only have functional parts of the two types of cones; monochromacy means you don’t have any functional cones at all.

The most common form of color blindness is red-green deficiency, which makes it difficult for you to distinguish certain shades of red and green. Another common form of color blindness is deuteranopia, in which you are missing the functional cones that detect green wavelengths. Finally, there is tritanopia, in which you are missing the blue wavelength-detecting cones; this can make it hard to tell pink from purple and yellow from red.