James M. Maisel, M.D.  |  6 Comments  | 

Warning Signs That Point to Senior Eye Disease

It is normal for the eyes to change as we age. Naturally-aging eyes experience reduced contrast sensitivity, which may make it difficult to differentiate similar colors and patterns. It is normal for them to experience some difficulty in adapting to changes in light and dark environments as well as glare. Floaters usually occur when the vitreous gel in the eye liquefies in patients in their 50s and 60s resulting in tiny specks in the vision. Depth perception and reduced ability to see colors are also common along with decreased tear production and dryness of the eyes. These mild symptoms usually are not indicative of severe eye problems.

Serious Warning Signs

An ophthalmologist should immediately be contacted if there are severe and persistent symptoms that include:

  • Loss of vision
  • Sudden blurred or hazy vision
  • Double vision
  • Pain in or around the eye
  • Seeing flashes of light in one or both eyes
  • Halos around lights at night
  • Painful or intense sensitivity to light
  • Discharge or foreign body in the eye
  • Changes in the color of the iris or clarity of the cornea or watch crystal
  • New onset or sudden change in floaters or flashing lights
  • Distortion or waviness of vision
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