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Visual Disorders

Myopia (Nearsightedness)

Nearsighted individuals typically have problems seeing well at a distance and are forced to wear glasses or contact lenses. The nearsighted eye is usually longer than a normal eye, and its cornea may also be steeper. Therefore, when light passes through the cornea and lens, it is focused in front of the retina. This will make distant images appear blurred.

There are several refractive surgery solutions available to correct nearly all levels of nearsightedness.


Hyperopia (Farsightedness)

Farsighted individuals typically develop problems reading up close before the age of 40. The farsighted eye is usually slightly shorter than a normal eye and may have a flatter cornea. Thus, the light of distant objects focuses behind the retina unless the natural lens can compensate fully. Near objects require even greater focusing power to be seen clearly and therefore, blur more easily.

LASIK, Refractive Lens Exchange and Contact lenses are a few of the options available to correct farsightedness.


Astigmatism

Asymmetric steepening of the cornea or natural lens causes light to be focused unevenly, which is the main optical problem in astigmatism. To individuals with uncorrected astigmatism, images may look blurry or shadowed. Astigmatism can accompany any form of refractive error and is very common.

Astigmatism can be corrected with glasses, contact lenses, corneal relaxing incisions, laser vision correction, and special implant lenses.


Presbyopia

Presbyopia is a condition that typically becomes noticeable for most people around age 45. In children and young adults, the lens inside the eye can easily focus on distant and near objects. With age, the lens loses its ability to focus adequately.

Although presbyopia is not completely understood, it is thought that the lens and its supporting structures lose the ability to make the lens longer during close vision effort. To compensate, affected individuals usually find that holding reading material further away makes the image clearer. Ultimately, aids such as reading glasses are typically needed by the mid-forties.

Besides glasses, presbyopia can be dealt with in a number of ways. Options include: monovision and multifocal contact lenses, monovision laser vision correction, and new presbyopia correcting implant lenses.

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Dry Eye

Dry eye is a condition that occurs when the eye does not produce enough tears to keep the eye moist. Symptoms of dry eye may include stinging, scratchiness, eye mucous and even excess tearing. The condition can be the result of natural aging, associated with certain medical conditions or it can be caused by certain medications. Individuals who have been diagnosed with dry eye have several options for treatment. There are many over the counter artificial tears or prescription medication that will keep the eye lubricated. In some cases a doctor can close the channel that tears drain through in the eye to keep the tears within the eye. If you feel you may have dry eye, consult your eye doctor for help.

Dry Eye

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Macular Degeneration

Macular Degeneration is a disease that affects the central part of your vision. The loss of vision may be gradual or it may come on suddenly. The disease occurs in the macular of the eye attacking the cells and destroying clear vision. Macular Degeneration can be detected during an eye exam. Treatment options include injections, laser surgery, drug and supplement therapy.

Macular Degeneration

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Diabetic Retinopathy

Individuals with diabetes are at risk of having Diabetic Retinopathy. Diabetic Retinopathy occurs when high blood sugar levels damage retinal vessels within the eye. The two types of Diabetic Retinopathy are Nonproliferative Diabetic Retinopathy and Proliferative Diabetic Retinopathy. An ophthalmologist can detect Diabetic Retinopathy at a dilated eye exam. Treatment options include shots, laser surgery, and Vitrectomy. If you have been diagnosed with Diabetes, it is very important to keep your blood sugars under control to avoid being diagnosed with Diabetic Retinopathy. Routine eye exams are essential in maintaining your good eye health. Read more about Diabetic Retinopathy in our Other Services section.

Diabetic Retinopathy

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Glaucoma

GlaucomaGlaucoma is a series of conditions that exist in the eye that cause pressure to build up against the optic nerve. This nerve carries visual information from the retina to the brain. Excess pressure against the nerve can affect the vision and cause permanent loss of vision. Glaucoma is considered the second most common cause of blindness in the US. Glaucoma can be detected at a dilated eye exam. Treatment options include eye drops, laser treatments, eye surgery and medications. If you have been diagnosed with glaucoma, it is important to have regular checkups to assess the pressure in the eye. Read more about Glaucoma in our Other Services section.

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Cornea Ulcer

Cornea UlcerA cornea ulcer is an open sore on the surface of the eye. It can be caused by bacterial, fungal or viral infections in the eye. It can also be the result of poor hygiene in contact lens use. Any cut or scratch in the eye may result in a cornea ulcer. People with conditions that result in dry eye may be more susceptible to a cornea ulcer. Symptoms may include pain, redness, sensitivity to bright light and blurry vision. An ophthalmologist can diagnose a cornea ulcer during an eye exam. Treatment options may include discontinuing contacts, applying cool compresses to the eye, eye drops, over the counter pain relievers, and even surgery.

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Conjunctivitis

Conjunctivitis is an inflammation or infection in the conjunctiva of the eye. Symptoms may include blurry vision, itchy eyes, discharge, pain and redness in the eye. Some of the causes of Conjunctivitis may include bacteria, a virus, allergies and certain diseases. An ophthalmologist can diagnose conjunctivitis in an eye exam. Treatment options will depend upon the cause and may include antibiotic creams, cool compresses, allergy medications, and warm compresses. It is important to wash your hands often, avoid touching your eyes, use clean face cloths and change your pillow case regularly to avoid passing the infection on to others or re-infecting yourself.

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To learn more about our laser vision correction procedures, please contact our office 413-584-6666 or 800-436-EYES (3937) to schedule a free LASIK consultation in Northampton, Springfield or Ware. LASIK eye surgery financing is here and available with approved credit at Balin Eye & Laser Center located in Northampton, MA. Our LASIK vision counselors are happy to discuss payment options that allow you to correct your vision now, while paying over time.

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