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General Practice 2023

Sight tired: symptoms, causes and treatment

Table of contents:

Sight tired: symptoms, causes and treatment
Sight tired: symptoms, causes and treatment
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Strain is the difficulty in focusing on close objects, being more common after the age of 40, leading to the appearance of symptoms such as stretching the arms away from the face, in order to be able to read or observe in detail a object, eye pain or headache, for example

Strained eyesight, which is scientifically called presbyopia, or popularly as "short arm syndrome", can arise due to a weakening of the ciliary muscle or a loss of elasticity of the lens of the eye, interfering with the ability to to focus on objects that are close.

In the presence of signs and symptoms indicative of tired eyes, it is important that the ophthalmologist is consulted so that it is possible to confirm the diagnosis and initiate the most appropriate treatment to prevent the progression of the condition, and the use of glasses may be recommended, contact lenses or even surgery.

Symptoms of Tired Eyes

The main sign of tired eyes is difficulty seeing objects up close, as well as reading, which can also cause headaches when eyes are strained, being more common from the age of 40 and be progressive. Other symptoms of tired eyes are:

  • Difficulty seeing or focusing on objects up close;
  • Blurry or blurry view;
  • Difficulty seeing something away from the eyes at normal distance;
  • Eye pain after trying to read or see an object from near or far;
  • Headache when eyes are strained, such as after reading;
  • Difficulty seeing very small letters;
  • Need more light to be able to read something up close;
  • Pull out what you are reading to make the letters clearer;
  • Squinting to try to focus on objects or read;
  • Eye tiredness;
  • Burning eyes when trying to read;
  • Heavy eyelid feeling;
  • Redness or watery eyes.

Furthermore, due to reading difficulties, there may be a drop in productivity at work, for example.

Symptoms of tired eyes are more common to appear after the age of 40 and to be progressive. Therefore, in the presence of these symptoms, it is important to consult the ophthalmologist so that an eye exam can be carried out and the most appropriate treatment can be initiated.

How to confirm the diagnosis

The diagnosis of tired eyes is made by the ophthalmologist through the evaluation of symptoms and the refraction exam, which serves to assess how much the person sees, having to observe letters on a scale or numbers, through a device, called an autorefractor, placed in front of the face.

This exam is indicated whenever the person has vision changes for near, far or difficulty focusing, and it is especially recommended that it be done every 2 to 4 years after age 40. See other types of eye exams that can be done by the ophthalmologist.

Possible causes

Strained eyesight is mainly caused by the natural aging of the body, as from the age of 40 onwards there is a decrease in the ability to focus on objects up close, called "accommodation". In addition, from the age of 40 onwards, there is a decrease in the elasticity of the lens, which is the lens responsible for focusing, becoming more rigid and resulting in greater difficulty in seeing objects up close.

However, eye strain can also appear before age 40, and is usually caused by other conditions, such as:

  • Anemia;
  • Diabetes or hyperglycemia;
  • Multiple Sclerosis;
  • Myasthenia gravis;
  • Trauma or eye disease;
  • Vascular insufficiency;
  • Cardiovascular disease;
  • Use of diuretic, antihistamine or antidepressant medication.

In addition, tired eyes can occur as a result of other situations, such as myopia, cataracts, astigmatism or hyperopia, for example, and it is common in these situations to have other symptoms such as swelling in the eyes, in some cases, red eye and double vision, for example.

How the treatment is done

Strain eyes should be treated according to the ophthalmologist's recommendation, which aims to reduce eye fatigue, improve visual capacity, prevent the onset of symptoms and the progression of the situation.

Therefore, the treatment indicated by the doctor may include:

1. Use of eyeglasses

Using eyeglasses with prescription lenses is the simplest and most practical treatment for tired eyes, and aims to help the eye focus better at close range.

These glasses can be with simple, bifocal, trifocal or progressive lenses, which will depend on the ophthalmologist's recommendation.

2. Wearing contact lenses

Contact lenses can also be indicated by the ophthalmologist to help improve focus and thus relieve the symptoms of tired eyes.

Contact lenses that can be indicated by the ophthalmologist can be monofocal or multifocal.

3. Refractive surgery

Refractive surgery is a treatment that promotes a change in the shape of the cornea, and can be indicated by the ophthalmologist to improve near vision. However, even after surgery, eyeglasses may be required.

The main refractive surgeries that may be indicated by the ophthalmologist are LASIK surgery, conductive keratoplasty or photorefractive keratectomy (PRK). See other types of refractive surgery that may be indicated by the ophthalmologist.

4. Intraocular lens implantation

The implant of intraocular lenses (IOLs) is a surgery in which the ophthalmologist removes the lens of the eye, and replaces it with a lens placed internally inside the eye, which helps to restore vision, in a definitive way, a since intraocular lenses remain for life.

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