Many people experience changes in their vision as they get older, and often wearing corrective lenses is all that's needed to see clearly throughout the day. However, there are some other symptoms of serious vision problems or problems with the area around the eyes that you should be aware of, so you know when to see a doctor and when you may be facing surgery or may need medication. While only a doctor can examine your eyes and note the real cause of your symptoms, consider a few here so you can discuss these with an eye doctor as needed.
1. Clouding of vision
If you see "floaters" in front of your eyes, this can be natural as it may simply be tiny specks of dust on your eyelids or something similar. If you notice flashes of light or dark shadows across the outside of your eyes along with these floaters, this might mean the retina behind the eye is becoming detached. This should be addressed by your doctor at once.
Very cloudy vision can mean cataracts, which is a clouding of the lens of the eye. Cataract surgery involves removing this lens and having it replaced with an artificial lens. This may sound serious but it's somewhat routine and can clear up this cloudiness so you can see more clearly. In some cases, cataracts are very small and don't affect a person's vision to where they would need surgery, but if you struggle to see around this cloudiness, talk to your eye doctor about having them removed.
2. Swelling or irritation of the eyelid
If you have swelling of the eyelid or any type of irritation, this may be caused by an injury, infection, or allergy. Depending on its cause, it may simply run its course and the eyes return to normal.
However, if you feel something scratching against the eye, this might be a sty on the inside of the lid and this may require medication to reduce its size so that it doesn't injure the eye itself. An infection can also travel in the body, so you may want to take medication if the eyelid is infected for any reason. If your eyelid gets swollen to the point of being uncomfortable or you feel any type of pain or experience vision loss at the same time, it's good to have a doctor evaluate the extent of the injury or infection so you protect the eyes themselves as the lid heals.