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Eye Pain: Is It a Symptom of Serious Vision Issue?

Drastic changes in visions should always be brought to your eye doctor’s attention. Your optometrist will perform an exam to diagnose any serious underlying issues and work with you to find treatment.

But aside from drastic changes, what warning signs should you be on the lookout for? Sustained eye pain is a symptom that could be pointing towards a more significant vision issue.

1. Pain When Blinking

If you’ve been experiencing eye pain while blinking, there could be a few factors at play. Here are some possible reasons for this symptom:

  • Pink Eye: Pink eye (or conjunctivitis) occurs when the inner part of your eyelid and the sclera (white section of your eye) swells up. In addition to pain while blinking, a common symptom of pink eye is a pinkish hue in the sclera.

  • Dry Eye: When you blink, tears travel over the cornea to hydrate your eyes. Some people have less tear flow than others, meaning the eyes cannot receive the moisture they need. Other people have too many tears, which can cause some to flow out of the eye onto the cheeks. Both these instances can be a result of dry eye often causing discomfort while blinking.

  • Foreign Object in the Eye: If there’s a foreign object in your eye (dirt or sand, for example), you’ll have immediate symptoms of discomfort - such as pain while blinking, pressure, or light sensitivity. While these objects can’t get lost behind the eyeball, they can scratch the cornea, damage your vision, or cause infection.

If you’re experiencing pain while blinking, it’s essential to contact your eye doctor immediately. Getting early treatment can prevent more severe issues like infection or permanently damaged vision.

2. Pain in the Eye Socket

Pain in the eye socket could be a warning sign of these more serious vision issues:

  • Glaucoma: This occurs when the eye loses the ability to drain fluid properly, causing a buildup of pressure that could potentially damage the optic nerve and lead to permanent vision loss.

  • Anterior Uveitis: An inflammation of the middle layer of the eye (the uvea). Other symptoms include blurred vision, light sensitivity, and dark spots in your vision.

  • Optic Neuritis: Often a symptom of multiple sclerosis, optic neuritis occurs when swelling of the optic nerve causes temporary vision loss in one eye.

  • Dry Eye Disease: Dry eyes, when you don't have enough quality tears to lubricate and nourish the eye, can also cause pain in the eye socket.

While pain in the eye socket isn’t always a warning sign of a more serious vision issue, it can be. It’s important to contact your optometrist immediately before your symptoms worsen.

Contact Eden Prairie Eye Care Today!

If you are experiencing sustained eye pain, contact the team at Eden Prairie Eye Care today. Dr. Oker will diagnose your symptoms so that you can see pain free!

Schedule your eye appointment with Eden Prairie Eye Care today using our online platform or by calling (952) 944-2792.


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