Photophobia can make life challenging. While some cases of light sensitivity are temporary, others are associated with chronic health conditions that could cause you eye pain for many years. If you’ve ever had a dilated eye exam, then you may already know how sensitivity to light can make it hard to go outside or walk into a bright room without wearing sun-blocking shades. While there isn’t always a cure for long-term photophobia, there are treatments that can provide effective pain relief.
Start With Comprehensive Exams and Testing
The majority of the treatments and home care tips for photophobia are based upon addressing the underlying cause. For most people, an eye exam along with a general physical can help to identify potential reasons for the light sensitivity. For instance, around 90% of people with migraines experience photophobia during an episode. In this instance, using medications to prevent severe migraines could also help to improve light sensitivity.
Use Tinted Glasses
When bright light causes eye pain, you may instinctively turn down the lights in your house and wear sunglasses and hats to shield your eyes. But, people with severe and chronic photophobia may need stronger light-blocking lenses. The top retina specialists NY residents see for photophobia can help you to get special glasses that use a rose-colored tint that is shown to reduce eye pain in bright light. Or, they may offer you special filters that you can wear over your glasses to achieve the same type of relief.
Try Hydrating Eye Drops
Some cases of light sensitivity are related to having dry eyes. If this is the case, then you can try rewetting drops that are available over-the-counter. Keep in mind that you may need special prescription drops from your Brooklyn retina doctor if you have a diagnosed eye condition that is related to dryness, such as blepharitis.
Treat Nerve Disorders
Migraines, blepharospasms and other conditions that impact the nerves around your eye can contribute to pain when you are exposed to light. Certain types of injections can help to calm these nerves and block their pain signals. Botox is one common type of injection that some people have used to get relief from nerve-related photophobia.
Use Injectable Medications to Relieve Eye Inflammation
Inflammation and infections within the deeper layers of your eye can often cause photosensitivity. If you experience sudden or severe light sensitivity without an already-established cause, then you’ll need to have your eyes examined by a professional ophthalmologist. For cases of inflammation, they may recommend using intravitreal injections to deliver medication directly to the inner layers of the eye. Depending upon the cause of the inflammation, you may only need a single treatment. Or, you might need regular treatments to address chronic conditions.
Dealing with light sensitivity can make even stepping outside to enjoy some fresh air painful. Fortunately, you have many options to address the reasons for your light sensitivity that you can use both in your eye doctor’s office and at home. Figuring out the cause is your first step towards finding relief from your pain. Once you begin your treatment, make sure to monitor the results, and let your eye doctor know if you need any adjustments to your care play.