Volodymyr Melnyk, ophthalmologist of the highest category, ophthalmic surgeon, candidate of medical sciences, medical director of the VISIOBUD clinic, told what functions lateral vision performs, during the development of which diseases it deteriorates and when to consult a doctor.

Functions of Side Vision

All people normally have central vision. For example, you focus on the computer screen in front of you, and you can clearly see words if you're working or reading, or people and objects when you're listening to a lecture or watching a movie. At the same time, you can't clearly see what's on either side of you without specifically focusing on objects or objects: a wall, a pet, a flowerpot on the windowsill, a stack of books, etc. This is lateral vision, or peripheral vision.

It performs several functions that we need. Namely, it helps:

When we have normal side vision (120 degrees) from birth, we don't even think about how important it is. This will help you clearly understand how much information we "capture" with our side vision every second. In medicine, this condition is called tunnel vision.

Improved side vision

There are exercises that you can do to improve your side vision. But, provided that the deterioration of lateral vision is not associated with the development of ophthalmic diseases.

So, the first exercise is called "Finger Tracking": sit comfortably, raise the thumb of one hand and fix it at a comfortable distance for you from your face, but so that you can see it clearly. Slowly move your finger left and right, following it with your eyes. Repeat the exercise for 2-3 minutes.

The second exercise is "At a distance": place two objects, for example, books or glasses, on the table at a distance of 40-50 cm from each other. Sit in front of a table and focus on one object for 2-3 minutes. Then quickly shift your gaze to the second object without moving your head. Repeat the exercise 2-3 times, changing the subject to focus.

The third exercise is "Outside the window": sit by the window and watch the movement of cars, people, birds for 10-15 minutes, using only side vision.

Causes of impaired side vision

Side vision can deteriorate after a stroke, in case of cerebrovascular accident, against the background of chronic stress.

But from an ophthalmological point of view, this is facilitated by:

In the case of the development of the diseases described above, impaired lateral vision is a constant and important symptom that cannot be ignored.

I advise you to urgently consult an ophthalmologist if:

1. you have to turn your head to see what is on the right or left side;

2. your vision is much worse after dark (twilight vision deteriorates);

3. Dark spots of different sizes appear in front of the eyes from time to time;

4. You can't read normally, your eyes get tired during visual work;

5. Vision in one eye has suddenly disappeared or gradually become blurry, you feel pain, eye pressure, see gray spots within the field of vision (ocular stroke).

Treatment of Side Vision Impairment

Treatment of side vision impairment begins with comprehensive diagnostics: perimetry, tonometry, ophthalmoscopy, visual acuity test. Once the doctor has made an accurate diagnosis, treatment will begin. It does not always involve surgery or laser vision correction. In some cases, for example, in the case of impaired side vision due to chronic stress or insufficient blood circulation to the optic nerve, drops, medications and a course of hardware treatment are enough. But, when it comes to glaucoma or retinal detachment, surgery and laser treatment are indispensable. However, in any case, the treatment will be quick and effective when the patient does not delay the visit to the doctor.

And, of course, I remind you that you need to check your eyesight not only when something bothers you, but every year.

Medical Director of the VISIOBUD clinic Volodymyr Melnyk

Take care of yourself and your eyesight!