Common types of eye condition

Flashers and floaters

Tiny spots, lines, flashes or shapes in your vision are known as flashes and floaters. Lots of people experience them and they usually aren't cause for alarm. However, in some cases, they can be a sign of something more serious. If you suddenly notice a shower of new floaters, or floaters along with flashes or a dark shadow or a ‘curtain’ in your vision, you should take urgent action. Click here to find out more about what causes flashes and floaters and changes to look out for.

Cataracts

A cataract is the clouding of the lens in your eye. Developing cataracts will cause your sight to become cloudy and misty. This resource provides an overview of what cataracts are, how your eye works, the symptoms of cataracts and information about treatment and recovery.

Age-related macular degeneration

Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) affects a tiny part of the retina at the back of your eye, called the macula. AMD causes changes to the macula, which leads to problems with your central vision. This leaflet provides an overview of AMD and the different types, a list of symptoms and information on diagnosis and treatment.

Glaucoma

Glaucoma is an eye condition where your optic nerve is damaged by the pressure of the fluid inside your eye. There are different types of glaucoma. Click here to find out more about the different types of glaucoma along with their respective symptoms, the risk factors for glaucoma and information on the treatments available.

Diabetic Eye Disease or Retinopathy

Diabetic retinopathy is a complication of diabetes, caused by high blood sugar levels damaging the back of the eye (retina). The NHS website provides information on how diabetes can affect the eyes, symptoms of diabetic retinopathy and ways to reduce your risk and manage your diabetes.

Dry eyes

Dry eye is an eye condition caused by a problem with tears. Dry eye can make your eye feel uncomfortable, red, scratchy and irritatedDry eye can usually be managed at home or advice can be sought from a pharmacist. You should see an optician or GP if you still have dry eyes after trying home treatments or if there is any change in the shape of your eyelid.  This resource provides an overview of dry eye, a list of symptoms and how to self-manage the condition at home.

Red eye

Red eyes may look alarming but they’re most likely to be caused by a minor eye condition. If a red eye is accompanied with reduced vision/ light sensitivity/ severe headaches and/or nausea it could be something more serious and could threaten your sight if not managed appropriately. Contact your optician or GP immediately if you experience any of these symptoms alongside a red eye. Click here to learn more about red eye.

Conjunctivitis

Conjunctivitis can make your eyes look red, feel gritty and be watery or sticky. It’s sometimes called pink eye. The NHS website provides information about the types of conjunctivitis, the symptoms, how to manage it at home and when you should see a doctor.

Corneal abrasion

A corneal abrasion is a scratch or a graze on the clear front surface of the eye (or the cornea). It is usually caused by a fingernail or another object catching the eye. This website provides information on what to do if you have a corneal abrasion.

Chalazion

A chalazion is a small lump, or cyst, that develops slowly in the eyelid. It can sometimes look alarming, but it’s usually painless and rarely requires treatment.  This link provides information on how to self manage a chalazion and symptoms to look out for that may require you to see a doctor.