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Eye Health Center

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Common Eye Problems

You're more likely to have some of these eye problems as you get older, but they can affect anyone at any age.


This is when you lose the ability to clearly see close objects and small print. It's a normal process that happens slowly over a lifetime, although you may not notice any change until after age 40.

Presbyopia is often corrected with reading glasses.


These are tiny spots or specks that float across your field of vision. Most people notice them in well-lit rooms or outdoors on a bright day.

Often floaters are normal, but sometimes they're a sign of a more serious eye problem, such as retinal detachment, especially if you also see light flashes.

When you notice a sudden change in the type or number of spots or flashes you see, go to your eye doctor as soon as possible.

Dry Eyes

This happens when tear glands can't make enough tears or they make poor quality tears. Dry eyes can be uncomfortable, causing itching and burning. Rarely, they can lead to some loss of vision.

Your eye doctor may suggest using a humidifier in your home or special eye drops that are similar to real tears. He may put plugs in your tear ducts to lessen tear drainage. A procedure called Lipiflow uses heat and pressure to treat dry eyes.


Too many tears can come from being sensitive to light, wind, or temperature changes. Try to protect your eyes by shielding them or wearing sunglasses.

Tearing may also mean that you have a more serious problem, such as an eye infection or a blocked tear duct. Your eye doctor can treat or correct both of these conditions.


Cataracts are cloudy areas that develop within the eye lens.

A healthy lens is clear like a camera's, and light has no problem passing through it to the retina at the back where images are processed. When you have a cataract, the light can't get through as easily and, as a result, you can't see as well.

Cataracts often form slowly, and they don't cause symptoms like pain, redness, or tearing in the eye. Some stay small and don't affect your eyesight. If they become large or thick, cataracts can usually be removed by surgery.

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