Do your eyes become dry during the winter? Is this normal? What can you do to keep your eyes moisturized?Continue reading
Here’s What Really Happens When You Sleep In Your Contact Lenses
You are tired and don’t want to do anything. Here’s what really happens when you sleep in your contact lenses.Continue reading
Corneal Vaulting Devices
What are Corneal Vaulting Devices? When do you know you need them? How can these eye devices improve your vision?Continue reading
Common Eye Viruses
Many Common Eye Viruses, bacteria, parasites, and fungi that can invade the human body are also capable of attacking the surface or interior of the eye. Infectious eye diseases can be categorized in two ways.
Firstly, doctors normally talk about the part of the eye that’s infected or inflamed. Conjunctivitis, for example, is an inflammation of the conjunctiva, the membrane of the inner eyelid and the inner corner of the eye’s surface. Other possible locations of inflammation include the eyelid (blepharitis), the cornea (keratitis), the liquid inside the eye (vitritis), the retina and the blood vessels that feed it (chorioretinitis), or the optic nerve (neuroretinitis). These are just a few examples – the eye is a complex organ of many parts.
Secondly, eye infections are also classified according to what’s causing them. Ocular histoplasmosis syndrome (OHS), for example, is caused by a fungus (the condition is also called chorioretinitis). It generally attacks the blood supply of the retina, on the inner rear surface of the eye.
The most common eye infection is conjunctivitis caused by an adenovirus (a type of common cold virus). This type of infectious conjunctivitis is sometimes called pinkeye and is most common in children. Viral conjunctivitis is contagious because the virus can be spread from the eye to hands that then touch doorknobs and other surfaces that other people use.
There are other Common Eye Viruses of infectious conjunctivitides, such as bacteria like Staphylococcus aureus. Bacterial infections occur most commonly in children and tend to result in longer-lasting cases of pinkeye.
Keep Your Eyes Healthy
3 tips to achieve Healthy Eyes
1. Keep your eyes moist. Heat or air circulation from a fire or heater can cause dryness and irritation of the eye. It can be particularly painful and annoying for those who already suffer from dry eye, a chronic condition in which the body doesn’t properly produce tears. Try sitting farther away from heat sources and use artificial tears or a humidifier to alleviate dryness.
2. Wear sunglasses with UV protection. The sun can damage your eyes when it’s cold outside in more ways than when the weather is warm. Snowy conditions double the sun’s effect as ultraviolet (UV) rays can enter your eyes from above and are reflected off the snow into your eyes. Wear sunglasses that block 99 to 100 percent of UV light and throw on a hat or visor if conditions are particularly bright.
3. Wear goggles. It’s very easy for debris — dirt, bark, slush, ice — to get into your eye while you’re being active outdoors. It’s even more likely for things to get trapped in the eye if you’re skiing or hiking behind someone. Sunglasses help, but they don’t do enough; Wear goggles for maximum protection. Find a pair that has enough room for you to wear sunglasses underneath or find a pair with UV protection built in.
If you are experiencing particularly uncomfortable dry eye, contact your eye doctor to make an appointment. If you think your eyes may have been damaged by the sun or by debris, seek treatment immediately.
The Myths Of Eye Glasses
1. Your vision will get worse over time by wearing eye glasses: FALSE
Glasses are simply an aid to improve vision, and they will not cause your eyesight to grow worse. As we get older, it becomes harder and harder to see up-close. If you begin to need stronger reading powers as the years go on, don’t fret. The glasses themselves have not made your eyes worse!
2. If you wear glasses, not wearing them will cause your vision to deteriorate faster: FALSE
If you wear reading glasses, the side effects of not wearing them could include blurriness and distortion. Trying to focus without glasses will not make your vision deteriorate faster, though it could lead to squinting and eyestrain. The primary effects of not wearing your glasses are temporary and, at most can cause discomfort.
3. Over-the-counter readers can hurt your eyes: FALSE
First thing first–using over-the-counter (OTC) reading glasses from a pharmacy or online retailer (versus readers from your optometrist), will not hurt your eyes. OTC reading glasses contain magnifying lenses in different powers that work just as well.
Before buying reading glasses from a pharmacy or online retailer, you’ll want to know the reading power you need. Wearing non-prescription reading glasses that are either too weak or too strong for your eyes could be bothersome, but it will not cause long-term damage to your vision.
4. Wearing reading glasses makes your eyes stronger: FALSE
Wearing reading glasses makes your vision clearer, but it does not have an impact on your prescription. Don’t be confused if you hear reading glasses magnifications referred to as “strengths”–this does not mean it’ll make your eyes stronger over time. Bottom line: You won’t cure bad vision by wearing glasses every day.
5. Sitting too close to the TV is bad for your eyes: FALSE
This rumor hasn’t been true since before the ’60s when television sets emitted mild levels of radiation. Nowadays, TVs have proper shielding so radiation is no longer an issue. Sitting in front of the TV for too long could cause you to experience discomfort, like eyestrain, irritation, or watery or dry eyes. If you find yourself in front of digital devices for extended periods of time, consider a pair of computer glasses.
6. Eating carrots is one way to improve eyesight: FALSE
Eating carrots won’t help someone with already poor eyesight regain clear vision. But, carrots are jam-packed with nutrients known to help protect your eyes, such as vitamin A. Vitamin A is known to play a roll in reducing the impact of cataracts and age-related macular degeneration.
7. If you see fine, you do not need regular eye exams: FALSE
If you’ve been cruising through life with 20/20 vision, that’s great! However, many eye and vision problems do not have symptoms, so it’s important to get your eyes checked regularly by an optometrist to make sure they stay healthy as you age.
When you visit the eye doctor, your optometrist is scanning for much more than just vision problems. Through many comprehensive eye exams, health conditions such as tumors and diabetes can be detected before physical symptoms are present.
8. Reading in dim light will worsen your eyesight: FALSE
You won’t go blind from reading in the dark, but it will make it harder to see what you’re reading. In low light, your eyes are doing two things: relaxing to collect as much light as possible and contracting to focus on what you’re reading. Your eyes can become strained and tired, resulting in sore, dry, or watery eyes, as well as headaches. While reading in the dark might be bothersome, these symptoms are temporary and will not cause long-term damage to your eyesight.
What Is Eye Strain
Eye Strain Symptoms Include:
- Sore, tired, burning or itching eyes
- Watery eyes
- Dry eyes
- Blurred or double vision
- Increased sensitivity to light
- Difficulty focusing
If you can’t tolerate these symptoms at home–like by making the adjustments below–then you should head to the doctor, especially in the case of prolonged eye discomfort, changes in your vision, or double vision.
What Can You Do About It
The Vision Council report claims that the solution to eye strain is easy to enact: All you have to do is limit the time you spend in front of screens. But if your job tethers you to a desk–even a standing desk–you still are going to be dealing with screens all day. The key, then, is a mindfulness about the way you interact with the screens in your life: Just like mindlessly having your email open all day can slowly fill your body with tension, never looking away fills your eyes with tension.
PAY ATTENTION TO YOUR BODY:
Sudden eye, neck, or shoulder pain is a warning that eye strain may be coming on.
Turn down your monitor brightness. Less work for your eyes.
CLEAN THE SCREEN:
DIM YOUR LIGHTING
The more competing light in the room, the harder your eyes have to work.
ATTEND TO YOUR ERGONOMICS:
Having the right distance between your eyes and your screen makes things less awful.
ADJUST YOUR SCREEN:
Optimal case is directly in front of your face, just below eye level.
GROW YOUR FONTS:
Bigger the text size, lesser the eyeball labor.
REMEMBER TO BLINK:
Sometimes people’s eyes dry out because they forget to blink. Really.
USE THE 20-20-20 RULE:
Every 20 minutes, take 20 seconds to look at something 20 feet away.
What is Keratoconus
Keratoconus | The Anatomy of Your Eye
The cornea is the clear tissue in front of the pupil and iris. It is living tissue but has no blood vessels.
You see through the cornea, just as you would look through a window. Behind the pupil is the lens, which along with the cornea, focuses the light entering the eye. The retina in the back of the eye is composed of specialized nerve cells that transmit the light impulses coming through the front of the eye to the optic nerve and then to the brain. In a healthy, normal eye, light passes through the cornea and lens and is focused on the retina. Sharp vision requires all structures of the eye to be in good working order. Like a foggy window, loss of transparency of the cornea will contribute to reducing vision.
Keratoconus is a non-inflammatory eye condition in which the normally round dome-shaped cornea progressively thins causing a cone-like bulge to develop. This can result in significant visual impairment due to the scattering of light before it hits the retina. It is estimated to occur in 1 out of every 2,000 people and is generally first diagnosed in young people at puberty or in their late teens. In its earliest stages, keratoconus causes slight blurring and distortion of vision and increased sensitivity to light. Keratoconus typically progresses for 10-20 years before it stabilizes. There is no known cure for the condition.
Over the past few years, treatments have been developed to help stabilize it in its early stages so that no further surgical treatments will typically be necessary. Prior to this treatment availability, patients needed to wear rigid contact lenses up until a time if/when there is significant corneal scarring or enough distortion of the vision that a cornea transplant was the only option. Contact lenses are still commonly used to help improve the vision and there have been significant improvements in the designs and materials of these lenses as well. We will work with your referring doctor to achieve the best treatment option(s) for your eyes.
How to tell when it’s time for eye exams
Noticing the signs of when it is time to get an eye exam is important to keep your eyes as healthy as possible. Creating a schedule or speaking with your eye doctor is a good way to be consistent with getting an eye exam. You should get an eye exam at least once a year, just to stay on top of your health. If you can’t remember the last time you got an eye exam, it’s more than likely time to get one. Here are some many ways to noticing when it is time to get an eye exam.
One of the most simple ways of realizing it is time for an exam is when you notice blurry vision or any change in your vision, especially if it following head trauma. This might be noticeable when reading, having to position the type closer or farther away for better focus. Another sign is if the eyes become irritated such as with itchiness, flashes, spots, floaters, dryness, or becoming red. If you are experiencing eye strain from extensive technology use, this could also be a sign that it is time to get an eye exam.
Difficulty driving or seeing signs at night is also a something to look for and be cautious about. Driving at night is as hard as it is but with blurred or irritated vision it’s increasingly dangerous. A more noticeable sign is if you get motion sick, dizzy, or have trouble following a moving target.
Lastly, a more serious way to recognize when it’s time to get an eye exam if for those who have diabetes or another health condition that affects your eyes. If you know that you have a family history of diabetes or an eye affecting health condition, then getting more than one eye exam per year is probably suitable.
At the first site of any of these issues don’t hesitate to contact your eye doctor and set up an eye appointment right away. As mentioned before, getting an eye exam is essential to maintaining healthy eyes. Do not wait for multiple signs to show before consulting a doctor, be prepared for any symptom that may come your way.
Does your insurance cover eyecare?
Vision insurance is a great investment to consider when you or a loved one have eye issues. But what exactly is eye care insurance, does your insurance cover eye care, and why does that matter?
Vision insurance used described as a health and wellness plan designed to reduce your costs for routine preventive eye care (eye exams) and prescription eyewear (eyeglasses and contact lenses). Most vision insurance plans are discount plans or wellness benefit plans that provide specific benefits and discounts for an annual premium, but the discounts can be well worth the price on the insurance. When purchasing vision insurance, be sure to fully understand the costs and benefits associated with the plans in consideration. Also, if you have vision care coverage through a plan at work, be aware that vision insurance plans usually operate differently than other health insurance plans or major medical insurance.
So, does your insurance cover eye care and does that matter? There are some things to consider when making the decision to get vision insurance. First off, vision insurance doesn’t cover everything, it will cover eyeglasses, contacts, and eye exams. However, if these three things impact your life greatly then the cost is worth it as the monthly premium paid will help reduce the total cost of eye care essentials. This should be explored more thoroughly with your provider for better assurance of the plan given. Another thing to consider is how to use the insurance once you have it, otherwise, it will be a waste of money. Be sure to use it as much as possible, for example, after getting an exam ask to know which brands of glasses are covered by the current plan you are on, then after trying on glasses purchase your favorite pair.
Having vision insurance can be very helpful to the patient especially if eye problems are going to be a long-term issue. Vision insurance will save lots of money if intended to help with eyeglasses, contacts, and eye exams. Once again it does not cover other expenses that are most likely covered by other health insurances. If looking to getting vision insurance be sure to go over the benefits that it will allow with your insurer.