Understanding Halos Around Lights

Seeing halos around lights can be unsettling. This phenomenon occurs when rings or circles appear around light sources. It’s essential to identify the cause to address any underlying issues.

Common Causes of Halos

Refractive Errors

Refractive errors like myopia, hyperopia, and astigmatism often cause halos. These conditions distort light entering the eye, leading to blurred vision and halos.


Cataracts, a clouding of the eye’s lens, are a prevalent cause of halos. They scatter light, making it difficult to see clearly, especially in bright or dim lighting.


Glaucoma can also cause halos. Increased pressure within the eye damages the optic nerve, affecting vision and creating halos around lights.

Dry Eyes

Dry eyes lack sufficient lubrication, causing irritation and visual disturbances. This condition can result in halos, especially in low-light situations.

Corneal Edema

Corneal edema occurs when the cornea swells, often due to injury or infection. The swelling distorts vision, leading to halos around lights.

Other Potential Causes


Certain medications, particularly those for mental health or high blood pressure, may cause halos as a side effect. Consult your doctor if you suspect medication is the culprit.

Contact Lenses

Improper use of contact lenses can lead to halos. Overwearing lenses or using the wrong type can irritate the cornea, causing visual distortions.

Lasik Surgery

Lasik surgery, while correcting vision, can sometimes result in halos during the healing process. These halos usually diminish over time.


Diabetes can lead to changes in vision, including halos. High blood sugar levels damage the retina, affecting how you perceive light.

When to Seek Medical Attention

If you experience persistent halos, it’s crucial to seek medical advice. An eye care professional can diagnose the underlying cause and recommend appropriate treatment.

Sudden Onset

A sudden onset of halos, especially with other symptoms like pain or vision loss, requires immediate medical attention. It could indicate a serious condition like acute glaucoma.

Persistent Symptoms

Persistent halos that don’t improve over time should be evaluated by an eye specialist. Early diagnosis and treatment can prevent further complications.

Preventive Measures and Treatment Options

Regular Eye Exams

Regular eye exams are vital. They help detect conditions like cataracts and glaucoma early, allowing for timely intervention.

Proper Eye Care

Maintain proper eye care by using lubricating drops for dry eyes and following contact lens guidelines. This helps prevent conditions that cause halos.

Medication Management

If medication is causing halos, discuss alternatives with your doctor. Adjusting the dosage or switching medications may alleviate the problem.

Surgical Options

For cataracts and severe glaucoma, surgery may be necessary. Procedures like cataract removal or glaucoma surgery can restore clear vision and eliminate halos.


Seeing halos around lights is often a sign of an underlying eye condition. Identifying the cause is crucial for effective treatment. Regular eye care and timely medical intervention can significantly improve your vision and quality of life. If you experience persistent or sudden halos, consult an eye care professional promptly.


Dr. Bryan Fuller

Dr. Bryan Fuller of Tatum Eye Care in Phoenix Arizona
Dr. Fuller grew up in Issaquah, Washington and graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering from Washington State University. He decided to ditch the calculator and trade it in for a phoropter and slit lamp. He headed east to The Ohio State University where he received his Optometry degree in 1998. Go Bucks! Not wanting to return to the gray of Washington, after graduation, he headed southwest to sunny Arizona. Shortly thereafter he met Dr. McPhelan and they partnered up at their original location, Optical Illusions. With the success of the first location, the two doctors opened up their north location, Optique at the Ridge. After many years of operating the two locations, it was time for an upgrade. In 2016 they merged the two locations into their larger and current location, Tatum Eyecare! When not at the office, Dr. Fuller enjoys spending his free time with his amazing wife and two boys. Dr. Fuller holds the following degrees:

Ohio State University - Doctorate of Optometry
Washington State University - B.S. Mechanical Engineering

Dr. James McPhelan

Dr. James McPhelan of Tatum Eye Care in Phoenix Arizona
Dr. McPhelan grew up in Southern California and enlisted in the Army at age 17. He graduated from Southern California College of Optometry in 1976, then started practicing optometry in Arizona in 1977. Over the next few years, he grew 20/20 Eye Care to 15 offices. In 1999, he and Dr. Fuller took over Optical Illusions, then opened Optique at the Ridge. In 2016, they created Tatum Eyecare. In his spare time, Dr. McPhelan is an avid golfer, often competing in multiple tournaments through the year. Dr. McPhelan holds the following degrees:

Southern California College of Optometry - Doctorate of Optometry

Dr. Houle

Dr. Houle
Dr. Houle is following in her father's footsteps as an optometrist. She is a North Dakota native who received her Bachelor's degree from the University of North Dakota before earning her Doctorate of Optometry from Midwestern University - Arizona College of Optometry. Dr. Houle began her career in eye care more than 10 years ago, and she worked as a receptionist, optician, and technician before becoming an optometrist. She has a particular interest in the management of ocular disease including dry eye and glaucoma. In her free time, Dr. Houle is an avid baseball fan (go Twins!) and spends as much time as possible with her friends and family in both Arizona and North Dakota.

Midwestern University – Arizona College of Optometry - Doctorate of Optometry
University of North Dakota - Bachelor of Science: Biology

Dr. Kenneth O'Daniel

Dr. Kenneth O'Daniel of Tatum Eye Care in Phoenix Arizona
Dr. O’Daniel was born in the beautiful mountains of Waynesville, North Carolina and grew up in Dayton, Ohio. He attended Wright State University and graduated with his BS in Biology in 1977; shortly thereafter, beginning his Masters in BioChemistry.

Dr. O’Daniel is also a 1983 graduate of the Illinois College Optometry. He met his wife Lori during this period. Lori, a Chicago native, became an integral part of his practice (and life!) shortly thereafter.
He moved to Scottsdale in 1986 to begin practicing inside LensCrafters. In 1990 Dr. O'Daniel opened the Scottsdale LensCrafters, and he also presided as its director of Optometric services.
Dr. O’Daniel became an Optometrist because of his love and passion for photography, physics, and desire provide patients with the ability to see the world more clearly. As a licensed optometrist, Dr. O’Daniel provides complete eye care services for the surrounding communities ages seven and up.
Dr. O’Daniel has had a working relationship with both Dr. Fuller and McPhellan for over two decades. He has served as past director for the Arizona Optometric Association, and past President of the Central Arizona Optometric Society. In January, 2018 Dr. O’Daniel decided to join Tatum Eye Care, the premier Eye Care Center in Phoenix and Scottsdale.
Dr. O’Daniel’s goal is simple: Provide Excellent Eye Care, treat patients as family, and treat everyone honestly and fairly!

Dr. Christina Wong

Dr. Christina Wong of Tatum Eye Care in Phoenix Arizona
A southern California native, Dr. Wong attended UCLA where she received her B.S. in Biology. She then completed her Doctorate of Optometry at the Southern California College of Optometry. Dr. Wong moved to Arizona to complete a residency in ocular disease at Hu Hu Kam Memorial Hospital on the Gila River Indian Reservation. Following residency, Dr. Wong earned the distinction of Fellow in the American Academy of Optometry.

Dr. Wong provides comprehensive eye care to patients of all ages, from pediatrics through seniors. She has a special interest in the management of medical eye conditions including glaucoma, eye infections, dry eye and diabetic retinopathy.
Outside of the office, Dr. Wong enjoys running, going to the beach, rooting for the Bruins, and spending time with her husband and three daughters.
University of California Los Angeles - B.S. in Biology
Southern California College of Optometry - Doctorate of Optometry

Dr. Ryan Felten

Dr. Felten of Tatum Eye Care in Phoenix Arizona
Dr. Felten is a native to Arizona, and was raised in North Phoenix where most of his family still resides. He earned his Bachelor of Science in Exercise Science from Brigham Young University; then returned home to Arizona to pursue his Doctor of Optometry at Midwestern University in Glendale. While at Midwestern University, he was a member of the Beta Sigma Kappa Honor Society and was the recipient of the Clinical Excellence Award in Pediatrics and Vision Therapy. Dr. Felten enjoys working with patients of all ages and also speaks fluent Spanish. Dr. Felten holds the following degrees:

Brigham Young University - Bachelor of Science in Exercise Science
Midwestern University - Doctorate of Optometry