Blurry Vision: Causes, Health Risks, and Treatments

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  • Blurry vision is a common condition affecting up to 3.2 million Americans yearly.
  • Refractive errors, eye infections, diabetes, high blood pressure, and certain medications can cause it.
  • Ignoring it can lead to multiple eye diseases and even vision loss, such as cataracts, glaucoma, macular degeneration, and diabetic retinopathy.
  • Treatments for blurry vision may include corrective lenses, medications, laser therapy, or surgery.

Blurry vision refers to the inability to see things. It can happen to anyone at any age and be a symptom of an underlying medical condition. Blurry eyesight can affect one or both eyes and be temporary or chronic.

The number of people affected by blurry vision is increasing. In fact, according to the American Academy of Ophthalmology, it is estimated that nearly 3.2 million Americans experience this condition each year. What’s sad is that many of them do not realize they are affected. This article will discuss the causes of blurry vision, its health risks, and the available treatments.

Causes of Blurry Vision

Several factors, such as refractive errors, eye infections, diabetes, high blood pressure, and certain medications, can cause blurry vision. Refractive errors such as myopia, hyperopia, and astigmatism can cause blurry vision, which can be corrected with eyeglasses, contact lenses, or surgery.

Eye infections, such as conjunctivitis, can cause blurry vision and are usually treated with antibiotics or antiviral medications. Diabetes and high blood pressure can damage the blood vessels in the retina, leading to vision problems. Some medications, such as antihistamines, antidepressants, and blood pressure medications, can also cause blurry vision as a side effect.

Health Risks of Blurry Vision

woman working feeling eye strain

You have always been advised to care for your eyes, yet people often ignore warning signs such as blurry vision. Sadly, ignoring it can lead to multiple eye diseases and even vision loss. Blurry vision, for instance, might indicate different eye diseases such as cataracts, glaucoma, macular degeneration, and diabetic retinopathy.


Firstly, cataracts are one of the most common eye diseases among aging people. They are the clouding of the eye’s natural lens that obstructs vision. Although cataracts develop over several years, they may lead to permanent blindness if left untreated.

Therefore, It’s crucial to recognize symptoms such as hazy vision, light sensitivity, and difficulty seeing at night. If you’re experiencing these symptoms, schedule an eye exam with your doctor.


Glaucoma occurs when the optic nerve that transmits information from your eye to the brain is damaged. The most common form of glaucoma has no symptoms in the early stages, and if untreated, it leads to vision loss. However, a variant of this disease known as acute angle-closure glaucoma is a medical emergency.

The sudden onset of severe eye pain, headache, nausea, and vision loss calls for immediate medical attention. Glaucoma can be dealt with by controlling the intraocular pressure with medication, laser surgery, or traditional surgery.

Macular Degeneration

Macular degeneration is a condition where the central part of the retina gets damaged, leading to blindness. It affects people 50 or over, and the early symptoms may include distorted images, difficulty seeing fine details and colors, and more.

Regular eye exams can help diagnose the condition early and prevent further damage. Avoiding some habits, such as smoking and practicing a healthy diet, can reduce the risk of macular degeneration.

Diabetic Retinopathy

When the blood vessels in the retina experience damage due to high blood sugar levels, it results in diabetic retinopathy. This damage leads to swelling or leakage in the retina. Diabetic retinopathy symptoms include blurred vision, floaters, and difficulty seeing in low light.

If left untreated, it can lead to retinal detachment and blindness. To reduce the risk, monitoring your glucose levels, visiting your eye doctor regularly, and practicing a healthy lifestyle are essential.

Treatments for Blurry Vision

doctor using a device to check eyes

Of course, the first course of action is to consult a trusted ophthalmologist. An eye doctor can diagnose the underlying cause of your blurry vision and recommend the appropriate treatment. Treatments may include corrective lenses, medications, laser therapy, or surgery, depending on the diagnosis.

Corrective lenses or surgery may be recommended if refractive errors cause it. If it is caused by an eye infection, antibiotics or antiviral medications may be prescribed. If it is caused by medical conditions such as diabetes or high blood pressure, these conditions must be managed to prevent further damage to the eyes. Some natural remedies such as eye exercises, a healthy diet, and supplements like vitamin A and omega-3 fatty acids may also help improve vision.

Final Thoughts

Blurry vision can be a symptom of a variety of medical conditions and can lead to serious health risks if left untreated. If you experience any changes in your vision, seek medical attention immediately. By caring for your eyes, you can maintain good vision and avoid the health risks of blurry vision.

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