Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a progressive disease that significantly impacts your body. As the nerve tissue of the central nervous system is destroyed, a number of symptoms surface, some of which affect vision. Eye doctor Virginia Ramsey Lind OD of Fairbanks, AK, advises that it’s important to understand how MS affects eyesight and wants to share several side effects. Recognizing these will ensure you seek timely treatment and take all the right steps to preserve your vision.
3 Ways MS Affects Vision
1. Double Vision
As MS affects the brainstem, it interferes with eye movement coordination. This can result in diplopia—double vision. Because your eyes have trouble focusing on a single stimulus or signal, they’ll begin transmitting two images to your brain, resulting in double vision. It may be infrequent, but it’s important to speak with your eye doctor, as it can become chronic over time.
In the most serious and later stages of MS, blindness is a possible side effect. As nerves of the central nervous system continue to deteriorate, it can damage your optic nerve. This can lead to permanent and varying degrees of blindness that are irreversible.
3. Optic Neuritis
Optic neuritis is the most common vision-related side effect of MS. As the coating around the optic nerve wears down, you’ll begin to experience blurriness in one eye. It can also be accompanied by regular pain. The Multiple Sclerosis Trust estimates that 70% of people living with MS will deal with optic neuritis, which is why it’s important to begin working with an eye doctor early on.
Whether you’re dealing with MS or just need basic optometry services, turn to Virginia Ramsey Lind OD. This eye doctor has nearly 30 years of professional eye care experience and is committed to helping her patients maintain their eyesight. Whether it’s treating glaucoma or prescribing corrective lenses, she and her team will work with you to find the best solution. Call (907) 456-8028 today to schedule an eye exam and visit her website and Facebook page to learn more.