night blindnessNight blindness is also termed as nyctanopia or keratomalacia. It is one of the highly noticed eye disorder. People affected by night blindness become unable to see at night or in any form of poor light. The retina of the eye is constituted of cone cells as well as rod cells. The external part of retina comprises huge rod cells than cone cells. No doubt, you can see in poor light with aid of rod cells found in the outside of the retina. Since, the rod cells functions substantially in the poor light. The rods are around 100 times more responsive to a sole photon of light than cones. Distract of the rod cells contribute to night blindness.

Night blindness mostly takes place when the rod cell in the retina becomes incapable to react to the light. In advanced nyctalopia, the rod cells miss their ability to reacting to the light slowly. If the dysfunction of the rod cells is a congenital issue, then it is typically inherited. In such instances, the possibilities are high that the rod cells may function a bit or may not function in the least. The condition which persists all through the life without relapsing, is called as ‘X linked congenital stationary night blindness’.

Night blindness is called as ‘retinitis pigmentosa’ (RP) when it is induced by genetic eye conditions and when it contributes to progressive loss of vision. The optic nerve turns light white (optic atrophy). In such instances, the daytime vision also badly affected and it may contribute to fatal blindness. The individual suffers through ‘defective dark adaptation’ in earlier phases. He may notice drop of the peripheral visual field (decreased visual defect) and may mislay central vision in the progressive phase of the disease. Identifying the causes of night blindness may assists stop the progression of the disease.

Inadequacy of retinol (vitamin A) is one of the leading reasons behind retinal disorder. Sufficient amount of vitamin A ascertains the supply of the pigment required by the rod cells. Dearth of vitamin A can make the eyes extremely dry and can result in night blindness. People of undeveloped countries are highly vulnerable to vitamin A shortage and hence, majorly susceptible to vision issues like nyctanopia. Symptoms of vitamin A inadequacy like corneal inflammation, poor vision, etc., require instant medical aid.
Regardless of a balanced diet, one may go through from vitamin A inadequacy, if the body fails to assimilate vitamin A from the food. This condition can takes place after a surgery of the liver or pancreas. Severe liver and intestinal disorder can ultimately result in night blindness.
Zink is indispensable for increasing the function of vitamin A. Hence, insufficiency of zinc in diet can induce eye issues. Balanced diet plays a crucial role in preventing electrolyte inequality.
Severe diseases like diabetes can affect the vision badly. As a result, controlling diabetes with help of diet, exercise and medication is mandatory.

Eyes need lots of time to adjust when you come from an intensely lit area to a faintly lit area. Dazzling car headlights can temporarily affect the vision of the person.
The person find difficult to watch television or read a book for longer duration. The eyes become pale after working on computers for few hours.
Person becomes incapable to notice the pedestrians walking alongside when the street is dimly lit. It is one of the prominent sign of night blindness.
Trouble while seeing at night, less bright light or in darkness during day-time, is the most common signs of night blindness.
Lessened contrast sensitivity occasionally arises due to laser vision surgery method and in turn, it may contribute to chronic vision issues.
People affected by nyctalopia may observe dry eyes.
They may notice issue of blur vision and may experience problem seeing when the place is well lighted.
The person fails to observe stars in a clear sky at night.
An individual affected with vision may have trouble while driving at night.
A person experiencing night blindness may need more light to read.
People with night blindness find difficulty to identify images in dim light
The person may observe difficulty walking through a dark theater.
Frequently stammering on the stairs or pavement can be a potential sign of night blindness.

Treatment of night blindness completely relies on the cause and the rigorousness of night blindness symptoms. Once the cause is identified, an eye specialist can decide the method of treatment, which mostly involves:
Elimination of cataracts
Quitting the intake of glaucoma medication or altering the medications
Getting eyes tested for short sightedness from a renowned ophthalmologist and altering the glasses.
Incorporating foods laden with vitamin A (like dairy products, fish oil and liver) to a daily diet and if needed, consuming vitamin A supplements.

An eye specialist can study the eyes systematically and take the essential steps obligatory for the improvement of the vision to a great extent. The age and overall health of affected individual decide the efficiency of the treatment. Treatment of this eye disorder is probable in many cases, except the inherited disorders. The chance of definite cure is high with early detection of the condition. A whole eye test is mandatory to decide the precise cause of the condition. The testing method determines visual sharpness, pupil light reflex, the capability for color vision and comprises refraction testing. Even a slit lamp test is also carried on. An electroretinogram and visual field examination might also be carried on. Do not forget to take consent from a skilled ophthalmologist for an exact diagnosis.

Anton Lawrence
Latest posts by Anton Lawrence (see all)