Night blindness (also called nyctalopia) is a more of a symptom than a condition. It’s where someone has a hard time seeing objects in low light, like at dawn, at dusk or in a dimly lit room.

What many people don’t know is that night blindness may be a sign of another issue.


There is really only one symptom of night blindness: difficulty seeing in darker places. This often happens when you leave a bright room and enter a darker room, such a movie venue hallway into the theater.

Other people describe having difficulty adjusting their vision while driving at night due to the constant change from car headlights to dark roads.

What Causes Night Blindness?

Our eyes are designed to see in the presence of light, so no being able to see outside at 2 am isn’t unusual. But if you have trouble seeing objects, places and people when others normally can, for example just after sunset or in a candle-lit room, you may have another condition:

  • Undiagnosed nearsightedness. This condition can cause people to experience difficulties seeing at night.
  • Glaucoma and medication for it. Some medications to treat this condition cause the pupil to restrict, which can result in night blindness.
  • Cataracts. The clouding over someone’s natural lens can cause them to experience night blindness or see halos around objects.
  • Diabetes. People with this condition often develop vision problems, and night blindness is one of them.
  • Keratoconus. This is an optical condition where the shape of the cornea is affected. It often results in night blindness and poor vision.

Treating Night Blindness

Depending on the cause of someone’s night blindness, treatment may be something as simple as prescribing eyeglasses. However, if someone is experiencing night blindness because of glaucoma, cataracts or another serious issue, their condition may be a little more complex to treat.

Most people who have night blindness can speak with their eye doctor and resolve it one way or another. While it’s a burden to deal with now, people who take the right actions can often be rid of their issues in no time.

Originally posted 2017-02-06 02:29:12.