Recognizing the Causes of Nystagmus and How to Overcome It

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Recognizing the Causes of Nystagmus and How to Overcome It
Recognizing the Causes of Nystagmus and How to Overcome It

Nystagmus is a visual disorder characterized by uncontrollable and repetitive eye movements. This condition can be caused by various things, ranging from congenital disorders to certain diseases. The treatment also needs to be adjusted to the cause of the nystagmus

Nystagmus can occur in one eye or both. In addition to causing disturbances in eye movement, people with nystagmus can also experience several other symptoms, such as blurred or blurry vision, being too sensitive to light stimuli or easily feeling glare, and difficulty seeing in dark conditions.

Recognize the Causes of Nystagmus and How to Overcome It - Alodokter

People who experience nystagmus will also feel dizzy and feel the sensation as if the place where their feet are shaking or moving. The symptoms of nystagmus can also worsen when the sufferer experiences stress or fatigue.

Various Causes of Nystagmus

The following are some of the causes of nystagmus:

1. Birth defects

Nystagmus that occurs since birth is caused by impaired development of the eye nerve in controlling eye movement. This condition is called infantile nystagmus syndrome (INS).

In addition to eye nerve abnormalities from birth, nystagmus can also be caused by other congenital diseases, such as albinism, congenital cataracts, and crossed eyes.

Symptoms of nystagmus due to this condition can appear in newborns up to about 2 months of age. INS is usually mild and does not cause serious complications later in life. In fact, some people who suffer from nystagmus are sometimes not aware of their condition.

2. Disorders of the eye

There are several problems or he alth problems in the eye that can cause nystagmus, including cataracts and disorders of eye refraction, such as nearsightedness and cylinder eyes or astigmatism. The disease makes it difficult for the eyes to focus, causing nystagmus.

3. Nervous disorders

Nystagmus can also be caused by abnormalities in the optic nerve or brain. Some diseases or disorders of the nerves that can cause nystagmus are epilepsy, stroke, and multiple sclerosis.

4. Head injury

Head injuries, for example from an accident while driving or playing sports and a hard blow to the head, can cause disturbances in the part of the brain that controls eye movement.

5. Vertigo

Vertigo is a condition that causes the sufferer to experience severe dizziness and feel his surroundings spinning. Irregular eye movements or nystagmus usually occurs when vertigo symptoms recur.

Vertigo that causes nystagmus can occur due to a number of conditions or diseases, including ear infections, Meniere's disease, tumors of the nerves of the inner ear (acoustic neuroma), and benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV).

In addition to some of the causes above, nystagmus can also be caused by the side effects of certain drugs, such as antiepileptic or anti-seizure drugs, alcohol or drug consumption, and vitamin B12 deficiency.

If you experience symptoms of nystagmus, immediately visit an ophthalmologist for proper treatment. The ophthalmologist will usually first conduct an eye examination to confirm the condition and find out the cause.

The examination is carried out by tracing the symptoms that appear and the patient's medical history, the history of medication that has been or is being taken by the patient, as well as environmental conditions that may cause vision problems.

After that, the doctor will perform tests, such as refraction tests and scans, to determine the diagnosis and cause of the nystagmus.

Nystagmus Treatment Steps

Nystagmus caused by birth defects or genetic disorders cannot be cured, but the symptoms can be alleviated. Meanwhile, nystagmus caused by certain conditions can be cured as long as the disease or medical condition that caused the nystagmus has been treated.

Nystagmus needs to be treated according to the cause. Some treatments that can be given by doctors to treat nystagmus are:

1. Vision aids

In people with mild nystagmus from birth or due to hereditary factors, the doctor may recommend using glasses, contact lenses, or adjusting the lighting around the house. With this effort, it is hoped that the nystagmus will subside on its own without additional treatment.

2. Drugs

Doctors can prescribe drugs to treat certain diseases that cause nystagmus. For example, if the nystagmus is caused by an inner ear infection, your doctor may prescribe antibiotics.

To treat nystagmus caused by vertigo, doctors may prescribe antivertigo drugs, such as betahistine, antihistamines, and anti-nausea drugs, such as ondansetron.

On the other hand, to treat nystagmus caused by a side effect of certain medications, your doctor may suggest that you stop taking the drug for some time.

3. Botulinum toxin injection

Botulinum toxin or botox injections are commonly used in cosmetic procedures. However, this injection can also be used to treat nystagmus caused by disorders of the nerves and muscles of the eye. However, the effects of botulinum toxin injections are usually only temporary.

4. Eye surgery

For cases of severe nystagmus or caused by eye disorders, the doctor may perform a tenotomy or surgery on the eye muscles to correct the position of the muscles that control eye movement.

While it doesn't completely treat nystagmus, it can help improve vision.

5. Suggestions for a he althy lifestyle

So that the nystagmus does not recur, the doctor will also advise the patient to stop smoking and consuming alcohol, not to use drugs, and to have a he althy diet.

In conclusion, nystagmus is an eye or nerve disorder that can cause visual disturbances. In certain cases, people with nystagmus may need the help of others in carrying out their daily activities due to the visual disturbances they experience.

Because it can be caused by many things, the treatment of nystagmus can vary, depending on the cause. Therefore, you need to see a doctor if you experience symptoms of nystagmus. Once the cause of the nystagmus is known, the doctor will provide appropriate treatment.

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