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What's In Your Eye

Move your mouse over each word to learn more about that part of the eye or scroll down to read more.




Parts of the Eye

CONJUNCTIVA
the clear tissue that covers the white part of the eye.

Conjunctivitis a.k.a. "pink eye": when the conjunctiva becomes inflammed or infected from allergies, a virus, or bacteria. If you suspect pink eye, call Dr. Z right away!

CILIARY BODY
hundreds of tiny muscles help to change the shape of the lens inside the eye, which helps the eye to focus.

CORNEA
the clear part of the eye in front of the colored iris, it lets light into the eye.

IRIS
the colored part of the eye (blue, green, hazel, brown, etc). It expands in the dark and constricts in bright light.

EYELID
protective layers of skin and cartilage that cover the upper and lower portion of the eye.

PUPIL
it's actually not a part of the eye at all! It is simply the black, circular opening in the middle of the iris. It acts just like an f-stop on a camera, allowing different levels of light into the eye.

LENS
located just behind the iris, it focuses the way light comes into the eye. Just like the lens on a camera that lets light onto film, the lens in the eye lets light onto the retina.

far-sighted: (hyperopia) Your distance vision is good but your near vision can be strained

near-sighted: (myopia) Your near vision is good but things in the distance are blurry.

astigmatism: very common, not a disease. Your eyes can be strained because the eye focuses light differently.

presbyopia: very normal as we age. Your near vision becomes blurry and difficult to see at near.

VITREOUS
located behind the lens, it is a clear, jelly-like substance that fills up the inside of the eyeball. This is also the part of the eye where floaters are located. Floaters occur when the vitreous inside the eye starts to liquefy (a normal part of aging). When a more solid piece of the vitreous is surrounded by a more liquefied part, a floater occurs. Floaters can look like squiggly lines, spots, webs, strands, and the like.

If you ever see many, many floaters, it can be a sign of a sight-threatening condition called a retinal detachment. If you see many floaters, call Dr. Z right away!!

MACULA
the very center of the back of the eye. It is where all of the little, tiny
details are focused.macular degeneration:

OPTIC NERVE
located just off center at the back of the eye, this is where all of the nerves and blood vessels come together and leave through the optic stalk to send the messages about what you see to the brain for interpretation.glaucoma: this is a disease that causes the optic nerve to degenerate. It can lead to tunnel vision (no peripheral vision) or even blindness if left untreated. Treatment often includes medicated eye drops or surgery.

RETINA
the lining in the back of the eye. It works like film in a camera - it captures the light the comes into the eye and sends those images via the optic nerve to the brain for processing.

CHOROID
the layer between the retina and the sclera that contains blood vessels.

SCLERA
the tough outer shell of the eye. It's also what makes the "whites" on the front of your eyes.




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