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Other Eye Problems

Color Blindness

Color blindness means you have trouble seeing red, green, or blue or a mix of these colors. It’s rare that a person sees no color at all. Color blindness is also called a color vision problem.

A color vision problem can change your life. It makes it harder to learn and read, and you may not be able to have certain careers. But children and adults with color vision problems can learn to make up for their problems seeing color.

Most color vision problems are inherited (genetic) and are present at birth.

People usually have three types of cone cells in the eye. Each type senses either red, green, or blue light. You see color when your cone cells sense different amounts of these three basic colors. Most cone cells are found in the macula, which is the central part of the retina.

See a picture of the eye that shows the retina and the macula.

Inherited color blindness happens when you don’t have one of these types of cone cells or they don’t work right. You may not see one of these three basic colors, or you may see a different shade of that color or a different color. This type of color vision problem doesn’t change over time.

Conjunctivitis (Pinkeye)

Conjunctivitis, also known as pinkeye, is an inflammation of the conjunctiva, the thin, clear tissue that lies over the white part of the eye and lines the inside of the eyelid.

Glaucoma

Glaucoma is an eye condition that develops when too much fluid pressure builds up inside of the eye. It tends to be inherited and may not show up until later in life.

The increased pressure, called intraocular pressure, can damage the optic nerve, which transmits images to the brain. If damage to the optic nerve from high eye pressure continues, glaucoma will cause loss of vision. Without treatment, glaucoma can cause total permanent blindness within a few years.

Because most people with glaucoma have no early symptoms or pain from this increased pressure, it is important to see your ophthalmologist regularly so that glaucoma can be diagnosed and treated before long-term visual loss occurs.

If you are over the age of 40 and if you have a family history of glaucoma, you should have a complete eye exam with an ophthalmologist every one to two years. If you have health problems such as diabetes or a family history of glaucoma or are at risk for other eye diseases, you may need to visit your eye doctor more frequently.