Blurred Vision: Causes, Symptoms, & Treatment

When you have a clear vision, you can do everything, from driving on the road to reading traffic signs. However, blurred vision can make your daily routine more difficult and can quickly become overwhelming.

Blurred vision forces you to live a life where there is no clear focus for anything, you may feel like someone has put a filter over your eyes.

Blurred vision, Blurry Vision, or Cloudy Vision

Blurry vision makes objects out of focus and hazy. The most common causes of blurred vision are refractive errors such as near-sightedness (myopia), farsightedness (hyperopia), or astigmatism.

Blurry vision can also be caused by presbyopia (age-related blurry vision for near after 40). Blurry vision can also be a sign of more severe health problems.

This includes problems such as sight-threatening eye disease or neurological disorder. Blurred vision can affect both eyes, but some people may only experience blurry vision in one eye.

Cloudy vision can affect the way an object appears. It is similar to blurry vision but might be hard to distinguish. Cloudy vision is usually a symptom of conditions like cataracts.

It’s possible to have blurred vision across your entire line of sight or in just parts of it. This includes the peripheral vision you might have to the right or left side. In some cases, you can also experience blurred vision in just one eye

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What Causes Blurred Vision?

There are many different things that can cause blurry vision, such as refractive errors and other minor issues.

It’s possible to experience blurry vision regardless of if you need corrective eyewear or not. While this doesn’t always warrant panicking, some causes can be more serious than others.

To identify the cause of blurry vision, it’s best to consult an eye care specialist for a full eye exam.

Common Potential Causes of Blurred Vision

Although the article doesn’t cover all of the causative factors responsible for blurred vision in your eyes, the most common of them are explained below.

Refractive Errors

Refractive errors such as nearsightedness, farsightedness, astigmatism, and presbyopia account for more than three-fourths of the cases of blurry vision.

Myopia

Most often, people with myopia or nearsightedness experience common symptoms like squinting, eye strain, and headaches. They might also experience blurry vision in one or both eyes. Myopia can cause objects in the distance to appear blurred and distorted, and it is the most common refractive error.

People often get eyeglasses or contact lenses to correct nearsightedness, but other types of correction include refractive surgery and corneal reshaping treatment or orthokeratology (ortho-k). LASIK and PRK are the most widely known refractive surgeries for correcting myopia (and other errors of refraction of the eye).

Hyperopia

Hyperopia is a common eye condition that you may have heard about. It’s when you’re able to see objects clearly at a distance but can’t focus on close-up objects. It’s an eye condition that some people are born with and others develop later in life.

Eye fatigue and blurred vision even for far are symptoms of uncorrected hypermetropia in some cases.

Eyeglasses, contact lenses, or refractive surgeries are common forms of treatment of farsightedness.

Astigmatism

As a symptom of astigmatism, blurred vision can often be experienced at distances and near. It is caused by an irregularly shaped cornea that is a result of genetic or physical abnormalities.

It’s not a condition that’s unique to your eyes, but with astigmatism, light rays won’t focus at a single spot of your retina. This means that despite how far away an object is from you, it will be blurry.

As you can see, there are multiple options for correcting astigmatisms, such as eyeglasses, contacts, or refractive surgeries. It often depends on what you feel is best for your eyes and comfort.

Presbyopia

You may be starting to notice that your vision isn’t quite the same as it used to be, and you may blame aging for bad eyesight for near. You might have difficulty reading small print now, but it’s likely only because of your eyesight changing over time. The most common issue is presbyopia which is a natural vision problem that can occur when you get older.

People who lose their vision later in life often experience blurry near-vision and eye strain when reading due to the weakening of their eye’s lens. However, presbyopia is a natural aging process that typically occurs at about age forty for most people. With this, you may notice that you begin to have difficulty focusing on things closer to an arm’s reach from your face.

There are many different eye conditions that people develop as they get older and one is presbyopia. The most common treatments for presbyopia include progressive lenses, bifocals, and reading glasses. There are also surgical options for presbyopia, like corneal inlays, monovision LASIK, and conductive keratoplasty.

Presbyopic glasses are becoming an increasingly popular option with many anti-reflective coatings and photochromic lenses. This enhances your vision and includes many convenience functions, such as correcting your refractive errors and maintaining comfort. Talk to your eye doctor for more information.

Dry Eye Syndrome

Blurry vision is an unfortunate symptom of dry eye syndrome. This often happens when the eyes get less than adequate hydration from the tear layer.

Even though dry eye syndrome affects many people, there are treatments that can help. Lubricating eye drops commonly prescribed for those with the condition will help. But if your case is too severe, you may need prescription medication.

You may benefit from punctal plugs if your eye doctor recommends them. They can be a great way to improve comfort and vision, which are the two most important things for healthy eyes.

Cataracts

It’s important to know if blurred vision, cloudy vision, or halos around objects are indicative of cataracts. These may be signs that you might be developing a cataract in your eyes and should contact your doctor.

Cataract surgery is a proven way to restore vision and increase the quality of life for people who came to suffer from this common eye condition. There are many different kinds of cataract procedures, but one that is especially successful is artificial lens replacement surgery.

Glaucoma

Many people have glaucoma, but many do not know that this condition can lead to blurry vision and blindness. Glaucoma is a chronic disease that damages the optic nerve and can cause irreversible damage if it is not treated on time.

Glaucoma affects people of all ages, but it is most common in adults over the age of 60. Some people are born with glaucoma while others develop this disease later.

There are many treatment options available to reduce the risk of vision loss, such as eye drops and surgery.

Age-Related Macular Degeneration (ARMD)

AMD is a leading cause of blurred vision and blindness among older people. It affects the central part of the retina, which is responsible for sharp, detailed vision.

People with AMD experience blurry vision and visual distortions causing straight lines to appear wavy or broken. This condition can be due to aging but it could also be caused by another eye disease.

There are many treatment options available for this condition and they include medications, laser surgery, and injections. The best option depends on individual needs and risk factors in each case.

Diabetic Retinopathy

There are many causes of blurred vision, but if you have diabetes, unexplained blurry vision may be due to the onset of diabetic retinopathy.

Diabetic retinopathy is a complication of diabetes that causes damage to the retinal blood vessels and can result in blindness. The most common complication is neovascularization of the retina, where new blood vessels grow on the surface of the retina.

Treatment for diabetic retinopathy includes laser surgery to remove blood vessels from the surface of the eye and medications for controlling blood sugar levels.

There are various treatments for diabetic retinopathy, but it is important to consult with your doctor before deciding which treatment option would be best for you.

Keratoconus

Keratoconus is a disease of the cornea, which is the clear front part of the eye. It affects both eyes and can lead to permanent vision loss. Keratoconus can be caused by genetic factors, environmental factors, or trauma.

In a large number of cases of keratoconus, one or both eyes can become blurry due to a bulging of the cornea. Normally, this disease would occur in adolescence, but there are many ways to prevent it and reduce symptoms if it does happen later on.

Corneal cross-linking slows or stops the progression of vision distortion and most often requires specialized rigid contact lenses, but vision rehabilitation is more complicated with the use of different types of lenses.

Blurred Vision after Refractive Surgeries

LASIK or any other type of refractive surgery can help improve the vision of those with refractive errors. However, the clarity of your vision may be blurry or hazy immediately after LASIK or any other type of refractive surgery. The degree to which your vision improves is dependent on many factors, and it takes time to stabilize vision completely.

Damage to the Cornea

Blurry vision is a common symptom of trauma to the cornea. It can be caused by trauma to the eye, such as a car accident, sports injury, or serious illness.

Trauma to the cornea causes blurry vision and has many causes. Blurry vision can also happen without trauma to the eye if there is damage to the cornea from other sources such as disease or chemical exposure.

Ocular Migraine

When it comes to ocular migraines, many people experience temporary symptoms such as blurred vision, flickering light, and halos.

If a person experiences these symptoms for the first time, it’s important to understand what causes migraines and what can be done to help them recover from them quickly.

Contact Lens Overuse and Lack of Cleanliness

Many people keep their contact lenses in for longer than they are supposed to as they mistakenly believe that they will not cause any long-term problems. However, protein and debris accumulation on the lens could cause damage to your cornea leading to serious eye infections, blurry vision, and other eye symptoms.

Pregnancy and Blurred Vision

Women are advised to avoid certain activities and substances such as alcohol and medications during pregnancy, but what about the vision? Many people struggle with blurry vision during pregnancy. This is due to the many changes happening in a woman’s body and her vision should not be taken lightly.

With hormonal changes in pregnancy, many mother-to-be experience blurry vision and double vision. Blurred vision can also be caused by the cornea changing shape and thickness over the course of the pregnancy, or by dry eye syndrome.

How is Blurry Vision Treated?

Your doctor can diagnose the cause of your blurred vision through a range of tests including an eye examination and physical checkup. If your eye doctors have any suspicions that there might be an underlying medical issue, you might also need a blood test.

When your vision becomes blurry due to low sugar levels, there are several ways to combat this. Fast-acting foods, such as juice or candy can quickly increase blood sugar. Glucose tablets can also be used which will increase blood sugar at a quicker rate.

Different treatment plans for blurry vision depend on the underlying condition that’s causing your signs and symptoms of blurred vision. Eye drops and oral medicines can be recommended for some cases, while laser surgery or eye surgery may be needed for other cases.

When Should You See the Doctor?

If you suffer from mild blurred vision, this could be an indication of tiredness, eye strain, or being overexposed to sunlight that might be impacting your vision.

It could mean you need a new eyeglass prescription, or it could mean you’ve developed a refractive error and needs to wear corrective lenses

If your blurry vision persists and does not go away even after you take a break from the screen and go into the shade, it’s time to see an eye doctor

In case you start noticing sudden changes such as blurriness, double vision, tunnel vision, blind spots, or dimness of sight in your vision it can be a sign of different serious eye diseases or other medical conditions.

Whenever you experience sudden changes to your vision, such as blurred vision, it is important to see an eye doctor near you right away.

If you’re experiencing sudden blurred vision, dizziness, one-sided weakness or numbness, drooping face or loss of balance, or slurred speech then it is advised that you seek medical help as soon as possible.

How can You Prevent Blurred Vision?

While we can’t always prevent all causes of blurry vision, taking simple steps to care for your eyes and protect them from potential damage can help you avoid lifestyle-related causes.

As important as it is to take care of your eyes, regular eye checks are needed. It’s recommended to go every year with a professional registered practitioner, such as an optometrist or ophthalmologist.

Protect your eyes from the harmful UV light by wearing sunglasses and a hat. Protect them from injury by using safety glasses. Especially if you do hazardous work, make sure they are always on hand.

Quitting smoking and having a healthy lifestyle will not only keep your body in shape but also safeguard your eyes.

A healthy diet that includes eye-healthy nutrients such as lutein and omega-3 fatty acids can help maintain healthy vision. Food rich in these includes spinach, kale, and carrots.

It is especially important if you have diabetes to look after your eyes. You should aim to control your blood glucose levels, keep cholesterol and blood pressure at healthy levels, and visit the eye doctor for regular check-ups. If you are noticing any vision problems, see your doctor right away to prevent them from getting worse.