What You Should Know About Night Blindness

Woman Behind The Wheel

Imagine walking in the dark and finding it hard to see anything in front of you. The street lights are not as bright as they used to be, and headlights of passing cars seem blinding. This is what people with night blindness struggle with. Also known as Nyctalopia, night blindness occurs when one has difficulty seeing in low light conditions or even darkness. If you’re experiencing this problem, then this blog is for you. Spindel Eye Associates in Derry, Raymond, Windham, NH 603-421-6536, has put together crucial information about night blindness. Keep reading to learn more.

What Happens to the Eye in Low or No Light?

Low or no light conditions can make it difficult to see as the human eye relies on the presence of light to function properly. In such situations, the eyes undergo some physiological changes to adjust to the environment. The eye has two kinds of cells responsible for detecting light, called rods and cones. Rods, which are highly sensitive and are located in the peripheral retina, are mainly responsible for making it possible for us to see in dim light. On the other hand, cones are responsible for color vision and are highly concentrated in the fovea of the retina. When there is not enough light, the cones stop working, and the rods take over, causing a temporary loss of color vision, but increasing sensitivity to light. This is why certain animals that are accustomed to low-light environments have more rods than cones in their eyes. The human eye, like other organisms, has a remarkable ability to adapt to different light conditions, ensuring that we can see as well as we can in different environments.

What is Night Blindness and What Causes It?

Night blindness is a condition where one experiences vision loss or difficulty seeing in low light conditions, making it difficult to navigate through the night. A few factors cause night blindness. The most common one is genetic. Others include malnutrition, eye diseases such as cataracts, and chronic diseases such as diabetes and retinitis pigmentosa.

What Are Signs and Symptoms of Night Blindness?

The most common sign of night blindness is difficulty seeing when it’s dark or in low light conditions. This leads to difficulty in driving at night or even walking around as one cannot see obstacles in their way. Other symptoms that might affect someone with night blindness include glare sensitivity, halos around lights, and delayed adaptation to different light conditions.

How is Night Blindness Diagnosed and Treated?

A visit to an optometrist or ophthalmologist can help diagnose night blindness. During the exam, the eye specialist will check for any structural or functional damage to the eye. Additionally, they will ask questions about any family history of eye problems, medications the patient may be taking, and any chronic diseases. Treatment for night blindness depends on the underlying cause. If it’s due to poor nutrition, dietary changes are necessary to improve the eyes’ health. In severe cases, surgery may be necessary to correct underlying eye problems, such as cataracts.

How Can I Prevent Night Blindness?

There are several things one can do to prevent or reduce night blindness:

  • Eating a balanced diet rich in Vitamin A and Zinc, which are essential for good eye health.
  • Avoiding smoking and excessive alcohol intake.
  • Getting adequate rest.
  • Wearing protective eyewear when working or playing sports.

Schedule an Eye Exam in Derry, Londonderry, Raymond, and Windham, NH Today!

If you’re experiencing difficulty seeing at night, you may be suffering from night blindness. A visit to our eye specialist can help diagnose the condition and recommend treatment options. Schedule an eye exam today at Spindel Eye Associates in Derry, Raymond, Windham, NH, by contacting us at 603-421-6536! Take action to maintain your excellent eye health.