Loss of Peripheral Vision
April 28, 2022
Peripheral vision is something that we often take for granted but is also something we constantly use throughout our everyday lives. A big problem, especially as we age, is the appearance of holes in our peripheral vision. Because we often do not consciously pay attention to what is in our peripheral vision, oftentimes these holes can go unnoticed until they have grown into a serious problem.
What is Peripheral Vision?
Your “peripheral vision”, or side vision, is everything that you can see outside of what is in the middle of your line of sight. This is opposed to “central vision”, which is what you can see that is directly in front of you. A good way to visualize this is to imagine looking straight ahead while driving down the road: the car in front of you is in your central vision, and the car trying to merge into your lane is in your peripheral vision.
What Are the Dangers?
As you can see from the example given above, peripheral vision is very important. Any holes in your peripheral vision can have a serious impact on your everyday life, from driving to seeing in dim light to being able to safely walk home. If the loss of your peripheral vision becomes severe enough it can feel like you are looking at the world through a small tube.
Why Does Peripheral Vision Get Worse?
There are many reasons for worsening peripheral vision. One of the major reasons is damage to the nerve that goes from the eye to the brain. This nerve passes along all the information that the eye takes in, so if a portion of the nerve thins or becomes damaged the part of the eye that corresponds to that portion of the nerve can no longer send its signals to the brain. There are many medical conditions that can cause damage to the nerve, such as glaucoma or a stroke.
What Options are There for Treatment?
Unfortunately, at this time there is no way to reverse any damage once it has been done. The good news is that early detection of worsening peripheral vision can prevent it from getting worse. Treatment options include prescription eye drops, vision therapy, lasers, or special eyewear.
Make an Appointment
If you feel like your peripheral vision has been getting worse, or would simply like to have it checked, schedule an appointment at Anh Nguyen Ophthalmology by calling (703) 534-4393 or requesting your appointment online.
Haddrill, M., & Heiting, G. (2021, March 30). Peripheral vision loss (tunnel vision): Causes and treatments. All About Vision. https://www.allaboutvision.com/conditions/peripheral-vision.htm.