According to research, Americans check their phone on average once every 12 minutes!!! Holy blue-light exposure, Batman! Since high energy blue-light cause so many issues in the eyes and computers/cellphones have the highest concentration of blue-light, this stat is enough to make an eye doctor break out into hives!
Blue light has high energy waves and penetrates the eye all the way to the retina. Studies are still underway to determine the affects of this light to the delicate structures of the eye but it is believed to cause macular degeneration!
What we do know is blue light causes digital eye strain! Some symptoms are trouble focusing, dry eyes, and eye fatigue. Blue light can also cause sleeping issues because it tricks your body into believing it’s daytime.
Lucky for you, there are some solutions:
1. Never skip the anti-glare coating on your glasses
2. Consider lenses that block blue light and help with eye fatigue
3. Step away from the computer! Give it a rest when you can and literally stop, go out and smell the roses
Sunglasses are all the rage right now! This is great news for eye doctors who treat patients for eye diseases caused by sun exposure! However sunglasses are now available everywhere: at the grocery store, in gas stations and even at street vendors. Inevitably, many people will pick up these cheap but stylish frames on a particularly sunny day while vacation at the beach and believe they are the real deal!
So the question is ‘are all sunglasses created equal?’ Answer: Absolutely not! In fact, Australia’s largest health insurer, Bupa, is warning consumers that OTC sunnies should come with a warning label.
Sunglasses that do not protect you from UVA and UVB can actually do more harm than good according to a spokesperson for the American Academy of Ophthalmology. These pairs will cause the pupils to dilate behind them, the same effect that you get in a dark room. However, if there is no UV blocking technology, the result is that the pupils are now 3 times larger, allowing 3x more harmful UV rays to reach the inside of the eye. When compared to the much smaller pupil when you are not wearing sunglasses, wearing those cheap sunglasses does more harm than if you were not wearing sunglasses at all!
Sunglass lenses without UV protection are only filtering out bright light, which may make you feel more comfortable, but do nothing to protect the eye tissues. The most important benefit of a good pair of sunglasses is they also filter out the UV rays that cause, skin/eye cancer, macular degeneration, growths on the eyeball (pinguecula), cataracts, and a host of other eye related diseases. Unfortunately, less reputable sources may even have stickers that falsely claim to protect from UV damage.
To be sure that you are getting a pair of sunglasses that meets FDA standards, make sure you shop at reputable sources! Steer clear of places that cannot guarantee their products are safe. These include street vendors, gas stations, and yes that super cute pair at your favorite clothing store. Optical stores in the United States are required to carry lenses that filter out UV and even have polarized lenses to greatly reduce the glare so you know that everything they offer is safe. When in a trustworthy shop you can also look for stickers that state that they are protecting you from both UVA and UVB, and when in doubt, ASK!
At Visionelle Eyecare, every pair of sunnies we carry protects from UVA and UVB, so no matter what, you are 100% covered!
If you’re looking for the fastest path to vision loss this summer, you’ve found it! Swimming in your contacts can cause infections, painful ulcers and blindness.
There’s a scary little parasite called acanthamoeba that lives in water and loves warm wet places (read: your cornea). It can attach to your contact lenses and then discover that your cornea makes a hearty snack. Acanthamoeba is difficult to diagnose and extremely hard to treat so prevention is key.
The FDA recommends your contact lenses or cases are never exposed to any kind of water, including tap water, sterile water and H20 in swimming pools, oceans, lakes, hot tubs and showers.
If you are a descendent of Magoo, I’d recommend investing in swim googles. They’ll protect your eyes, help you see underwater and you’ll look like a pro!
However, if you must insist on wearing contacts during your water adventures, let’s have a conversation about daily wear contacts lenses. Removing and disposing of your lenses immediately after water exposure will decrease your chances of losing your vision.
Have a safe and happy summer!
80% of learning happens through vision. Let that sink in. It is more common than you think to mistake vision problems for learning problems (Psst… It’s 40%). In the chaos of the weeks before back-to-school, it’s a good idea to make sure your kids will get the most out of the coming school year. Let’s bust some of the most common excuses why parents wait too long to get their kids eyes checked.
1. But my kid passed the school vision screening: School vision screenings usually done every 4-5 years and only check for clear distance vision not that JR’s eyes are working well as a team or that his eyes are healthy. An optometrist checks the overall health of the eye annually as well as treat and manage issues that pop up.
2. But my child can see (insert far away object, e.g. the board at school or a plane in the sky): Seeing well far away isn’t the same as having good vision. Many children are farsighted (see well at distance) in their formative years. However, that doesn’t mean that they can focus on the words in a book which can cause headaches if they are working too hard to focus. Or that their eyes are working well as a team.
3. But my child doesn’t complain: A kid that has never seen clear images her entire life is very unlikely to know that they have blurry vision. In addition, with the increased use of electronic devises at school and at home, it is becoming less likely that anyone can focus for hours on a screen without fatigue or headaches.
4. But vision issues don’t happen in my family until later in life: Sure grandma didn’t get macular degeneration or cataracts until she was in her 60s and your diabetic eye disease happened in your 40s but the bottom line is these things run in the family. Because of your child’s crystal clear natural lenses, sunglasses are more important now than ever.
82% of UV damage will happen before your little is 20 years old. UV rays can cause cancer on the delicate skin of the lid, cataracts and retinal damage. It is imperative to the future health of your kids to begin preventing these things as early as possible.
5. But my kid is only 6 years old: Ideally by age 6, your child should have already had 4 eye exams. The first at 6 months old to check the overall development and health of their eyes. Another at 3, at 5 before the first day of school, and then every year after that. Even though babies are too young to read letters or shapes, we still have the ability to get all the info we need. I call it Opto-Magic!
It is more important than ever that their eyes be checked annually to make sure they have healthy eyes for life! We went to school for a long time so that we can take care of your family. Trust the experts and let us do just that!
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