As professional optometrists we have the skills and expertise to diagnose and treat a variety of conditions that affect eye health, including but not limited to:
A cataract is the lens in our eye that hardens and becomes cloudy. This can happen due to age, to systemic diseases or to medication. When the lens becomes cloudy, it blocks light from reaching the retina and interferes with vision. The effect is similar to looking through a dirty car windshield or through a fog. Cataracts can develop in one or both eyes and they can progress at a similar or different rate. They are easily detected and followed by your optometrist. You can be referred to an ophthalmologist in a timely manner when your vision becomes affected by a cataract.
Glaucoma is an eye disease that causes damage to the optic nerve. This nerve sends visual information to the brain that is processed as what you see. One of the well known risk factors of glaucoma is elevated pressure in the eye. This causes damage to your nerve and leads to a reduced field of vision. When left untreated, glaucoma can cause severe loss of vision. There are primarily two types of glaucoma. The first, which is called open-angle glaucoma is the most common and it generally causes no symptoms in the early stages. This means that most people do not know they have glaucoma until they lose some of their eyesight. The second, which is called closed-angle glaucoma causes pain and nausea and can lead to a very sudden deterioration in vision. Early detection and treatment of glaucoma can slow the progression of the disease.
Age related macular degeneration:
Age related macular degeneration is a condition that affects the macula, a small area at the centre of your retina responsible for detailed central vision. There are two types of AMD. Dry AMD is characterized by the appearance of small yellow deposits known as drusen at the back of the eye. These deposits build up over time and can damage the cells of your macula causing loss of central vision. This process can take many years to develop. Wet AMD involves the growth of new, abnormal blood vessels under the retina. They are very fragile and can leak into the surrounding tissues resulting in rapid reduction of central vision. There are several steps that can be taken to help in the prevention of AMD (dry and wet) and there are now efficient treatment options for wet AMD.
Diabetic retinopathy is a diabetes complication that affects eyes. It’s caused by damage to the blood vessels of the tissue at the back of the eye called the retina. Diabetics are encouraged to see their optometrist at least on a yearly basis since the changes to the blood vessels may cause no symptoms or only mild vision problems in the beginning. The longer you have diabetes and the less controlled your blood sugar is, the more likely you are to develop this eye condition. Your optometrist and your physician can work together to help you to manage your diabetes and maintain good ocular health.
Hypertensive retinopathy is damage to the retina from high blood pressure. The retina is the layer of tissue at the back part of the eye. It changes light and images that enter the eye into nerve signals that are sent to the brain. When your optometrist looks into your eyes at your retina, it is like peeking through a window. They are able to see your blood vessels and their appearance can tell a lot about your general health. Higher risks of complications are associated with conditions such as high cholesterol levels, smoking, and having diabetes. Through regular eye examinations, your optometrist can guide you and help to prevent damage to your vision.
Binocular vision issues:
Binocular vision is a term that is commonly used by optometrists to describe the way in which your eyes work together to help you see and learn. A few examples where your binocular vision is solicited would be: being able to see a movie in 3-D or being able to read with a steady flow. A comprehensive assessment of your binocular vision status can often help to elicit some issues that you did not know existed. Some binocular vision conditions can be corrected with a series of exercises to strengthen your eye muscles. It is especially important to assess the binocular vision status of school aged children early on in life.
Our optometrists also diagnose and treat:
Retinal tears and detachments (flashes and floaters)