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What Causes Blurred Vision to Begin Suddenly?

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Blurred vision can be a sign of many different eye problems, some of which can be serious and even lead to blindness — but it usually goes away with treatment. If you experience blurry vision that starts suddenly and does not go away, you should see an ophthalmologist as soon as possible.

Is it Cataracts?

Cataracts are cloudy areas in the eye’s lens that block light from reaching the retina. They usually develop gradually over time, but sometimes they can progress rapidly and cause sudden blurred vision. Cataracts are more common in older people, but they can also affect younger people who have diabetes, trauma, or certain medications. Cataract treatment can be performed with surgery, which involves removing the cloudy lens and replacing it with an artificial one. Laser cataract surgery is one of the most common and successful eye surgeries in the world, with a 97-99% success rate. Read more about the procedure in Cataract Surgery: Before, During, and After the Procedure.

Is it Glaucoma?

Glaucoma is a group of eye diseases that damage the optic nerve, which carries visual information from the eye to the brain. Glaucoma is often caused by high pressure inside the eye, which can damage the nerve over time. Glaucoma usually does not cause any symptoms until it is advanced, but sometimes it can cause sudden blurred vision, eye pain, headache, nausea, and vomiting. This is a medical emergency called acute angle-closure glaucoma, which requires immediate treatment to lower the eye pressure and prevent permanent vision loss. Glaucoma treatment can be eye drops, laser, or surgery, depending on the type and severity of the disease.

Is it Age-Related Macular Degeneration?

Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is a leading cause of vision loss in people over 50. It affects the macula, the central part of the retina responsible for sharp and detailed vision. AMD can cause blurred vision, distorted vision, dark spots, or loss of central vision.

There are two types of AMD: dry and wet. Dry AMD is more common and involves the gradual breakdown of the macula. Wet AMD is less common but more serious and consists of the growth of abnormal blood vessels under the macula, which can leak and bleed.

February is Age-Related Macular Degeneration Awareness Month

February is Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD) Awareness Month, the perfect time to get your eyes checked and raise awareness of the disease for yourself and others. The American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO) urges older adults to learn more about the disease and its effects. Getting educated on AMD is the first step to early detection because you can take preventive measures that may reduce severe vision impairment risk. Regular check-ups with an eye care professional can help spot the signs and start treatment as early as possible to prevent further damage.

Other Blurry Vision Causes

There are many other possible causes of sudden blurred vision, such as:

  • Eye infections or inflammation
  • Eye injuries or foreign bodies
  • Dry eye syndrome or allergies
  • Migraine headaches or stroke
  • Diabetes or high blood pressure
  • Medications or drugs
  • Refractive errors or presbyopia

How Can I Treat My Blurry Vision?

Although there is no cure for AMD, there are treatments that can slow down or stop its progression.

The best way to discover the cause of your blurred vision is to see an ophthalmologist, who can examine your eyes and perform a comprehensive eye exam and special tests like optical coherence tomography (OCT) or fluorescein angiography (FA). Some of these causes can be treated with simple measures, such as eye drops, glasses, or contacts. Others may require more advanced treatments, such as LASIK eye surgery, retina treatment, or glaucoma surgery.

Sudden blurred vision can indicate a serious eye problem that needs immediate attention. If you experience this symptom, do not ignore it or wait for it to disappear. See an ophthalmologist as soon as possible and get the proper diagnosis and treatment. Your vision is precious, and you should take good care of it. Book your appointment with a Center For Sight ophthalmologist.

The advice in this blog is for general informational purposes only and may not be suited for your exact insurance plan and retinal needs. Therefore, consulting a qualified healthcare professional for personalized advice and treatment is essential.

About Center For Sight
Center For Sight provides ophthalmology, optometry, dermatology and cosmetic surgery services to patients in Southwest Florida. The practice offers patients convenient access to nationally renowned surgeons, highly-trained, compassionate staff members and cutting-edge technology. Center For Sight’s mission is to “bring clear vision to life” through trusting relationships and the unending pursuit of excellence in eye care. For additional information and locations, visit

About Center For Sight Foundation
The Center For Sight Foundation is a donor-advised fund maintained and operated by the Gulf Coast Community Foundation, a section 501(c)(3) organization. The fund is composed of contributions made by individual donors. David W. Shoemaker, M.D., established the Center For Sight Foundation to support the annual Mission Cataract program, which restores vision at no cost for people living at the poverty level suffering vision loss due to cataracts. For more information, visit

Written by useye

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