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Glendale eye doctor

What You Should Know About Night Blindness

Our Optometrist in Glendale, explains About The Causes of Night Blindness

Our eye doctor can help diagnose, manage and treat your night blindness so that you can enjoy being out at night again.

Here are 4 things you should know about night blindness:

The inability to see well at night can be the result of a condition such as:

  • Vitamin A Deficiency Vitamin A helps keep your cornea, the layer at the front of your eye, clear; it’s also an important component of rhodopsin, a protein that enables you to see in low light conditions. Although uncommon in North America, deficiency of this vitamin can induce night blindness.
  • Cataracts
    A buildup of protein clouds the eye’s lens, leading to impaired vision, especially at night and in poor lighting conditions.
  • Diabetic retinopathy
    Damage to the eyes’ blood vessels and nerves can result in vision loss, including difficulty seeing at night.
  • Glaucoma
    This group of eye diseases is associated with pressure build-up in the eye that damages the optic nerve. Both Glaucoma and the medications used to treat it can cause night blindness.
  • Myopia
    Also called nearsightedness, Myopia makes distant objects appear blurry, and patients with it describe a starburst effect around lights at night.
  • Keratoconus
    An irregularly shaped cornea causes blurred vision and may involve sensitivity to light and glare which tend to be worse at night.
  • Retinitis Pigmentosa (RP)
    A progressive genetic eye disease which can be associated with other diseases, RP leads to night blindness and peripheral vision loss.
  • Usher Syndrome
    This genetic condition causes both hearing loss and vision loss, including night blindness and RP, mentioned above.

Symptoms of Nyctalopia

Since night blindness is a symptom of some serious vision problems, it’s important to get your eyes checked regularly to ensure that everything is in good working order. Contact your eye doctor as soon as possible if you notice that you don’t see as well in dim light as you used to, such as when driving at night or when adjusting from being outdoors in the sunshine to being indoors.

Symptoms of Night Blindness Include:

  • Reduced contrast sensitivity
  • Difficulty seeing people outdoors at night
  • Difficulty seeing in places with dim lighting, like a movie theater
  • Trouble adapting to the dark while driving
  • Excessive squinting at night
  • Trouble adjusting from bright areas to darker ones

Treatments for Night Blindness

Your eye doctor will want to diagnose the cause of your night blindness in order to treat it. For example, in the rare case of vitamin A deficiency, it can be treated with vitamin supplements and vitamin-A rich foods; Myopia can be corrected with eyeglasses or contact lenses. Other conditions may require medications or surgery.

If night blindness is caused by a birth defect, Usher syndrome, or retinitis pigmentosa, low vision aids and devices can help you make the most of your remaining vision.

Prevention

While there is no proven way to prevent night blindness resulting from genetic conditions or birth defects, consuming healthy, nourishing foods and taking certain vitamin supplements may prevent or slow the onset of some eye conditions that cause night blindness.

If you experience poor vision at night or in dim lighting, we can help. Contact Jan M. McVey, OD, PC in Glendale to schedule your appointment today.

Book an eye exam at an eye clinic near you to learn more about your candidacy for contact lenses and which type is right for you.

Jan M. McVey, OD, PC, your Glendale eye doctor for eye exams and eye care

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Frequently asked questions answered by our Eye Doctor in Glendale, Arizona:

  • What are the reasons for Cataract Removal?

    Cataracts can interfere with your ability to live normally. They may make it impossible to drive, read, use a computer, watch TV, climb staircases, or identify faces. Cataracts can also get in the way of medical treatment for other eye diseases, such as macular degeneration or diabetic retinopathy because they prevent your eye doctor from inspecting the back tissues of your eye thoroughly. These are all reasons why your eye doctor may recommend cataract surgery.

  • Why Diabetic Eye Exams are Essential?

    At present, one in 10 Americans has diabetes – and the trend is continuing upwards. While routine comprehensive eye exams are important for diagnosing the early signs of diabetes, that doesn’t mean eye exams become insignificant after diagnosis!

  • What is glaucoma?

    Glaucoma describes a type of ocular disease that causes damage to your optic nerve and destroys your quality of vision. With no early symptoms, glaucoma can only be detected by a complete eye examination. When left untreated, glaucoma can result in detrimental vision loss. When treated early by one of our professional, knowledgeable eye doctors, we can help preserve your healthy eyesight.

  • What is Myopia?

    Cataracts can interfere with your ability to live normally. They may make it impossible to drive, read, use a computer, watch TV, climb staircases, or identify faces. Cataracts can also get in the way of medical treatment for other eye diseases, such as macular degeneration or diabetic retinopathy because they prevent your eye doctor from inspecting the back tissues of your eye thoroughly. These are all reasons why your eye doctor may recommend cataract surgery.

 

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Dr. Jan M. McVey: Your Neighborhood Glendale Eye Doctor

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Our optical team will be happy to help you find the best fit for your specific eyewear needs and explain how different lenses and frames will impact your vision. We carry a large selection of designer frames and sunglasses for children and adults. Feel free to drop by with our prescription or make an appointment with Dr. Jan M. McVey, OD, PC!

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Our eye doctor specializes in contact lens fittings. If you are new to contact lenses or have been wearing them for years, Dr. McVey will fit you with the perfect lenses for your eyes. If you have been told that you can't wear contacts due to astigmatism or dry eye, make an appointment with Dr. McVey, who specializes in hard-to-fit patients.

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Learn more about eye exams and vision testing from our eye care expert! Our Glendale optometrist would gladly explain what’s involved in a comprehensive exam we offer at our eye care clinic. If you're looking for a pediatric eye exam or professional contact lenses fitting, don't hesitate to consult Dr. McVey today!

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Our family of eye care professionals sincerely cares about your family and friends. We strive to treat each patient like they were our own mother, father, child or a good friend. We want to maintain our relationship with you for a lifetime, not just for one hour. Please partner with us to ensure your visual health as well as provide you with a stylish first impression.

Jan M. McVey, OD, takes the time to explain the results of your eye exam, describe your options and listen to your eye care and payment needs. Because maintaining good eye health is an ongoing partnership, we encourage you to ask questions and share your health information, which could be vital to monitoring, diagnosing and treating potential vision problems.

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Q&A with Dr. McVey | Dry Eyes

How do I know if I have Dry Eye?

Dry eye can cause quite a few symptoms, anything from the eyes actually feeling dry to the eyes watering often, or having a burning, itchy, or irritated feeling. One of the most common symptoms is the eyes feeling gritty or like something is in your eye. Most people will often experience blurred vision since the tears, which comprise the outermost surface of the eye, are unstable.

Is there anything I can do to prevent DES?

Dry eye is multi-factorial, and each person’s dry eye is unique to them. To help prevent dry eye, make sure to consume 8 to 10 glasses of water per day to avoid dehydration. Some nutritional supplements, such as fish oil and flax seed oil, can contribute to a more stable tear layer.

Remember to blink regularly and take breaks often when on a computer, cell phone or when watching television. During times of the year when there is less humidity, a humidifier might be helpful to provide more moisture in the air.

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About Dr. McVey

Dr. McVey decided to be an optometrist when she was 16 years old in Kingman, Arizona. She has been working as an optometrist in Glendale for over twenty years.

Dr. McVey really loves what she does because of the close personal relationships that develop over the years of seeing patients and their families. One of the best days of her career was when she realized that the child she was examining was the great-grandchild of another one of her patients.

Dr. McVey is especially excited about the new office that she was able to design herself. She feels it is comfortable, inviting and incorporates her love of the outdoors.

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