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Professional Eye Examination
What are the benefits of a Professional Eye Exam
Comprehensive eye exams evaluate all aspects of your vision and eye health.
Internal Exam – This is an evaluation of the retina and optic nerve while your eyes are dilated.
Visual Function and Eye Health – This includes testing depth perception, color vision, peripheral vision and response of the pupils to light, as well as an evaluation of eye focusing, eye teaming and eye movement abilities.
Glaucoma Testing – This is a test of fluid pressure within your eyes to check for the possibility of glaucoma.
Visual Acuity – Your doctor will test your vision with different lenses to determine if glasses or contact lenses can improve your vision.
Comprehensive eye exams look at your total health history.
Even though you visit a separate office for your eye health, that doesn’t mean your eyes shouldn’t be treated holistically. Your eye doctor will discuss your overall health and that of your immediate family, any medications you’re taking and whether you have high blood pressure or diabetes. They’ll also want to know if you smoke and how much sun exposure you get. All these factors help the eye doctor properly assess your eye health.
Comprehensive eye exams are performed by eye professionals.
Eye doctors are highly trained. Optometrists examine the eyes for visual defects, diagnose problems or impairments, and prescribe corrective lenses. After a bachelor's degree, optometrists complete a four-year program to obtain their Doctor of Optometry degree.
If you’ve never worn contact lenses, it can feel a bit intimidating. You’re inserting something into your eye, after all! Let’s ease your mind about the first step – your contact lens exam. This blog will walk you through what’s involved in a contact lens exam and what you can expect every step of the way.
It begins with a comprehensive eye exam.
Your eye doctor will first determine your overall eye health and vision. This includes a discussion of your health history and then a series of standard eye tests. These tests will evaluate eye focusing, eye teaming, depth perception, color vision, peripheral vision, and the response of pupils to light. The doctor will also measure your eye’s fluid pressure to check for glaucoma, evaluate your retina and optic nerve, and test your vision with different lenses to assess whether contact lenses can improve your vision.
Then, a discussion about your contact lens preferences.
If contact lenses are appropriate for you, it’s time to talk about your contact lens preferences. For example, do you want to enhance or change your eye color? Would you prefer daily disposable lenses or overnight contacts? Ask about the benefits or drawbacks of each, so you make the best decision. If you’re over 40, your doctor will likely discuss age-related vision changes and how contact lenses can address these issues.
Next, the eye doctor will conduct eye surface measurements.
Contact lenses require precise measurements of your eyes to fit properly. Using an instrument called a keratometer, your doctor will measure the curvature of your eye's clear front surface. This is your cornea. Next, the size of your eye's pupil is measured using a card or ruler showing different pupil sizes. This is held next to your eye to determine the best match.
You may also need a tear film evaluation.
If you have dry eyes, your eye doctor will perform a tear film evaluation to measure the amount of tear film on the surface of your eye. If your tear film is insufficient or you have chronic dry eyes, contact lenses may not be a good option for you. However, some newer contact lenses deliver moisture to the surface of the eye, making them a better choice for individuals with dry eye issues.
It's time for the contact lens fitting.
The final step is to fit you with a trial pair of contact lenses. Once inserted, your eye doctor will
examine the lenses in your eyes to ensure a good fit. He/she will check the alignment and
movement of the lenses on the surface of your eye. If the fit looks good, the last step is to
ensure the prescription is correct with several tests.
Now it’s your turn to test it out.
Your contact lens exam is over, but you’ll need to come back. Your doctor will usually have you wear the trial lenses for a week. Then you’ll have a short follow-up exam to confirm that the lenses are working well for you. You can then order a supply of contact lenses.
If this is your first contact lens exam, don’t worry. Choose a qualified optometrist and they’ll answer all your questions as you go. Just be sure to let them know you’re interested in contact lenses. That way, they can allow extra time in your appointment for specialized tests and consultation.
Millions of patients are diagnosed with diseases and conditions of the eye every year. Some of which may not display symptoms until there is irreversible damage to the patient’s vision. The outcome of eye disease can range from temporary discomfort to total loss of vision, which is why all eye problems and diseases should be taken seriously and regular eye check-ups are absolutely essential.
What Are The Causes Of Eye Disease?
The main causes of eye problems can be divided into five groups:
Inflammation of the eye and surrounding structures caused by a bacterial, viral, parasitic or fungal infection.
Injuries to the eye and surrounding structures, either as a result of trauma or an object in the eye.
Genetically inherited eye diseases, many of which may only manifest later in life and affect the structures and the functioning of the eye which therefore can impair visual abilities. In some cases, however, children are born with these conditions.
Diseases or conditions, such as migraine or diabetes, which can affect other organs of the body, such as the eyes.
External causes, such as allergies or eye strain due to over-use, or as a side effect of medication.
What Are The Symptoms Of Eye Disease?
The three symptoms indicative of eye disease are changes in vision, changes in the appearance of the eye, or an abnormal sensation or pain in the eye.
Changes in vision can include the following symptoms :
Nearsightedness is caused by an elongation of the eyeball over time, making it difficult to clearly see objects far away.
Farsightedness is caused by the shortening of the eyeball, making it difficult to see objects that are close-by clearly.
Blurry or hazy vision, or loss of specific areas of vision, which can affect one or both eyes and is the most common vision symptom. Any sudden changes in vision should be a cause of concern.
Double vision means a single clear image appears to repeat itself. This could be accompanied by other symptoms like headaches, nausea, a droopy eyelid, and misalignment of the eyes.
Floaters are specks or strands that seem to float across the field of vision. These are shadows cast by cells inside the clear fluid that fills the eye. These are usually harmless, but should be checked out as they could point to something serious such as retinal detachment.
Loss of vision after being able to see before.
Night blindness is the inability to see clearly in the dark or adapting to the dark, especially after coming out of a brightly lit environment.
Impaired depth perception means a person has difficulty distinguishing which of two objects is closer to him/her.
Changes in the appearance of the eye include, but are not restricted to, the following:
Redness or swelling of the eyes, which have a bloodshot appearance.
Watery and itchy eyes, depending on the cause, discharge from the eyes is also possible.
Redness and swelling of the eyelid.
Cloudy appearance of the eye, which occurs due to a build-up of proteins making the lens of the eye appear cloudy. These can be symptomatic of cataracts.
Eyelid twitch. This happens when eyelid muscles spasm involuntarily over a period of time.
Bulging eyes could be a symptom of hyperthyroidism or an autoimmune disorder called Grave’s disease.
Drooping eyelids can be a sign of exhaustion, aging, migraines or a more serious medical problem.
Pain In And Around The Eye:
Pain within the eye is called ocular pain, while pain on the surface of the eye is called orbital pain.
Ocular pain can be caused by a scratch or a slight injury to the cornea of the eye or the presence of a foreign object in the eye and often causes redness of the eye. Orbital pain can be sharp or throbbing and may go beyond the surface. This should be a cause for concern if it’s accompanied by vision loss, vomiting, fever, muscle aches, eye-bulging and difficulty in moving the eye in certain directions. Trauma to the eye or the surrounding facial areas can also be the cause of pain.
How Can Eye Diseases Be Treated?
The treatment of eye diseases are divided into four main categories:
Prescription glasses or contact lenses
Treatment of systemic conditions affecting the eye
In the case of experiencing any discomfort, pain, changes in vision or appearance of the eye, this should prompt an urgent visit to the ophthalmologist.
When you were a kid, did you experience your eyes get all reddish and all of a sudden, someone close to you also got to suffer from it? Your eyes, as well as those who contacted it, got itchy and swollen right? Then it must have been that you suffered from pink eyes.
Pink eye is well known as conjunctivitis and it is the infection or inflammation of the conjunctiva or the transparent membrane that serves as a covering for the white part of the eye called the sclera and lines the eyelid. More so, there is usually a tear in the eyes that emits a sticky discharge which develops into a crust while sleeping making it difficult for the patient to open the eyes in the morning.
One thing about the pink eye is that it is highly contagious and it could affect both eyes or just one eye at a time. While it is more common in children, adults are also victims of this eye condition. There are 3 major causes of pink eyes namely:
Streptococci and staphylococci are bacteria types that are most responsible for pink eyes. However, chlamydia and gonococci can also cause pink eye. It is accompanied by serious eye pain, itching, swelling, redness, discharge of colorful substances. The spread of bacterial pink eye is usually as a result of using personal items of infected parties, use of makeup materials that have been infected with bacteria, putting dirty hands in the eyes. If not treated, it can last for more than 10 days but if treated, in less than 3 days, it would be resolved.
Pink eyes caused by allergies are followed by serious itching and tearing of the eyes. Pain is minimal here, although, it comes with a lot of discomforts. Most times, pink eyes happen with the company of sneezing, coughing, etc. Allergens that trigger pink eyes include grass, dust, pollen, mold, ragweed, etc. Allergy based pink eyes are usually not contagious.
General Symptoms of Pink Eyes
Scratching of the eyes
Redness of the sclera
Hazy or blurry vision
Oversensitivity to light
The best way to prevent pink eyes is by practicing good hygiene. Some of them include:
Avoid putting dirty hands in your eyes
Make it a habit to wash your hands often
Avoid sharing towels and other personal items
Do not be fond of using dirty items
Changing your pillow cover regularly is important
Do not leave makeup item open for too long
Avoid sharing makeup items like eyeliners, etc.
Treatment of Pink Eye
The treatment of pink eyes is dependant on its underlying cause.
If it is caused by a virus, you just might have to wait for the virus to run its course which could last for about four to seven days. The virus caused pink eyes could be easily contacted so it is imperative you try to curb its spread. Anything virus cannot be cured by antibiotics but some antiviral drugs could be of help
Antibiotics are more effective against pink eyes caused by bacteria as they reduce the lifespan of these bacteria. These antibiotics could be in the form of eye drops or pills. Based on the doctor’s prescription, eye drop could be administered about four to six times daily. It is important you finish using your drugs even after the disappearance of symptoms
To deal with pink eyes caused by allergies, the allergy should be treated. Once treated, pink eyes would disappear. More so, it is worthy to avoid allergens so as not to have pink eyes at all.
Whenever the symptoms of pink eye emerge, the best preventive measure is to ensure you do not go to school or your workplace. Stay at home until the watery discharge ceases. This is to avoid the spread of it. You should also visit your doctor immediately to begin treatment. While mild pink eyes get to go on its own, some of its serious forms can cause a scar on the cornea
While dry eye isn’t a serious condition, it can have a major impact on your quality of life. You may find your eyes get tired faster or you have difficulty reading. Not to mention the discomfort of a burning sensation or blurry vision. Let’s take a look at dry eye treatments – from simple self-care to innovative prescriptions and therapies – to help you see clearly and comfortably.
What Is Dry Eye?
The understanding of dry eye will help you determine the best treatment option. Dry eye occurs when a person doesn't have enough quality tears to lubricate and nourish the eye. Tears reduce eye infections, wash away foreign matter, and keep the eye’s surface smooth and clear. People with dry eyes either do not produce enough tears or their tears are of poor quality. It’s a common and often chronic problem, especially in older adults.
Before we delve into more serious dry eye treatment options, here are a few simple self-care options that can manage minor cases of dry eye.
Blink regularly when reading or staring at a computer screen for a long time.
Make sure there’s adequate humidity in the air at work and at home.
Wear sunglasses outside to reduce sun and wind exposure. Wraparound glasses are the best.
Take supplements with essential fatty acids; these may decrease dry eye symptoms.
Drink 8 to 10 glasses of water each day to avoid dehydration.
Find out if any of your prescriptions have dry eye as a side effect. See if you can take an alternative.
For mild cases of dry eyes, the best option is over-the-counter eye drops. Here are a few tips for selecting the right one:
Low viscosity – These artificial tears are watery. They often provide quick relief with little or no blurring of your vision. But their effect can be brief, and sometimes you must use these drops frequently to get adequate relief.
High viscosity – These are more gel-like and provide longer-lasting lubrication. However, these drops can cause significant blurring of your vision for several minutes. For this reason, high-viscosity artificial tears are recommended at bedtime.
Prescription Dry Eye Treatments
There are several prescriptions that treat dry eye differently. Your eye doctor can advise the best option for your situation.
Contact Lenses – There are specialty contact lenses that deliver moisture to the surface of the eye. They’re called scleral lenses or bandage lenses.
Antibiotics– If your eyelids are inflamed, this can prevent oil glands from secreting oil into your tears. Your doctor may recommend antibiotics to reduce inflammation.
Anti-inflammatory drugs – These are eye drops to control inflammation on the surface of your eyes (cornea) using the immune-suppressing medication cyclosporine (Restasis) or corticosteroids.
Eye Inserts – If artificial tears don't help, another option may be a tiny eye insert. Once a day, you place the hydroxypropyl cellulose (Lacrisert) insert between your lower eyelid and your eyeball. It dissolves slowly, releasing a substance to lubricate your eye.
Tear-stimulating drugs – Available as pills, gel or eyedrops, cholinergic (pilocarpine, cevimeline) help increase tear production.
Autologous blood serum drops – For the serious dry eye that’s not responding to other treatment, these eyedrops are made with a sample of your blood. It’s processed to remove the red blood cells and then mixed with a salt solution.
Dry Eye Procedures
Punctal Plugs – Tear ducts can be plugged with tiny silicone plugs to reduce tear loss. By partially or completely closing your tear ducts, it can keep your tears from leaving your eye too quickly.
LipiFlow Thermal Pulsation – This treatment helps to unblock oil glands. Placed over your eye, the device delivers a gentle, warm massage to the lower eyelid over about 15 minutes.
Intense-Pulsed Therapy – This utilizes pulses of light to liquefy and release hardened oils that have clogged glands in the eyelids.
You don’t have to suffer from the symptoms of dry eye. Talk to your optometrist about dry eye treatment options designed to address the underlying cause of your condition.
If you’ve been diagnosed with cataracts, you may wonder if cataract surgery is right around the corner. Not to worry. There are many preventive steps you can take to slow the progression of cataracts and preserve your vision. That doesn’t mean you won’t eventually need surgery, but you can at least delay the need for quite a while.
Protect Your Eyes From The Sun
The National Eye Institute recommends protecting your eyes from the sun's harmful ultraviolet (UV) and high-energy visible (HEV) rays by always wearing good quality sunglasses while outdoors. Look for sunglasses that block 100 percent of UV rays and absorb most HEV rays with large lenses or a close-fitting wraparound style. Remember that the peak hours for sun exposure are between 10 am and 3 pm or 11 am and 4 pm during daylight savings time and that the sun’s rays are strong enough to pass through clouds, so you need your sunglasses every day.
Avoid Steroid Eye DropsSteroid eye drops are routinely prescribed to treat dry eyes or an arthritic flare-up in the eyes. Unfortunately, they can also speed up the progression of cataracts. Talk to your Optometrist or Ophthalmologist about how you can manage both conditions without inadvertently making your cataracts worse – and hastening the need for surgery.
Check Your Medications
There are over 300 commonly prescribed medications with side effects that may impact cataract progression. Since your primary care physician may not have access to your eye doctor’s medical records, be sure to ask your doctor if your current medications will affect your cataracts. If you must stay on the medication, it’s even more important to avoid sunlight during peak hours and to wear sunglasses.
If you haven’t quit already, here’s another good reason to do it: over time, the damage from smoking can double or triple an individual's risk of developing cataracts. If you’ve been a smoker, your habit was probably a big contributor to the diagnosis. The good news is – by quitting smoking now, you can slow the progression of cataracts.
Follow Eye Health Diet Guidelines
Studies have shown that certain vitamins and nutrients may reduce age-related decline in eye health, particularly antioxidants. If you’ve already been diagnosed with cataracts, adding foods rich in antioxidants to your diet will help slow the progression. This list isn’t exhaustive, but here are some examples to get you started: dark chocolate, blueberries, strawberries, pecans, carrots, sweet potatoes, artichokes, kale, red cabbage, beans, beets, spinach, apples, and plums.
Doctors also recommend eating more fish high in omega-3 fatty acids. This has been linked to a potentially reduced risk of cataracts or their progression. You may also consider taking a multivitamin that contains Vitamin C and E. Talk to your doctor or nutritionist about how you might adopt a healthy eating plan that’s designed to prevent cataracts.
Fortunately, making these healthy modifications to your diet can prevent many other lifestyle diseases such as diabetes. Studies have shown that a diet rich in processed carbohydrates can increase your risk of both developing cataracts and speeding up its progression. It’s important to develop a plan that works for you and supports your holistic health.
Take control of your cataract diagnosis by getting regular eye exams, communicating with your doctor, and putting these tips into practice. You’ll have better vision and prevent the need for cataract surgery in the near future.
LASIK Evaluation And Consultation
LASIK is a common laser eye surgery used to treat refractive errors, such as myopia, hyperopia, and astigmatism. Most patients benefit from LASIK as a lasting replacement for eyeglasses or contact lenses. Before undergoing LASIK surgery, patients will need to attend a consultation to determine if they are a candidate for LASIK. During this consultation, we will look at the patient’s eye health to determine the best vision correction option for their needs and how much corneal tissue will need to be removed and reshaped. Patients who do not qualify for LASIK might qualify for another laser eye surgery, like PRK or LASEK.
Our eyes are one of our most defining facial features, yet many of us are unhappy with them for one major reason – our lashes. Lashes are not only a practical feature but a cosmetic one. Unfortunately, we have not all been blessed with long, curly, dark and luscious lashes that frame our face. In fact, many of us feel that our lashes are a little lackluster, missing fullness and definition. Thankfully, there is now a solution – Latisse.
Latisse is a prescription treatment for hypotrichosis (shorter, thinner or otherwise inadequate eyelashes) that can help your lashes to grow longer, darker, and fuller than before and is the only product of its kind to be FDA-approved.
How Does Latisse Work?
Latisse works by increasing the length of the anagen phase of your eyelash hair cycle, which is the growth phase. This means that your eyelashes grow for longer periods of time, giving them the chance to thicken and lengthen.
Why Do I Need A Prescription For Latisse?
Latisse is only available by prescription to ensure that it is only used by people who suffer from hypotrichosis and so that your doctor can monitor your treatment.
How Do I Use Latisse?
Latisse is a home-application treatment. After removing any makeup and contact lenses you may be wearing, you apply one drop of the solution to the base of your upper eyelashes every evening using the single-use applicator brush. It should not be used on the lower lashes as this can lead to excessive hair growth outside of the treatment area.
For the best results, Latisse should be applied once a day for 16 weeks. Using Latisse any more frequently than that will not yield any faster or better results.
Are There Any Side Effects?
The most common side effect reported as a result of Latisse use is itching or redness of the eyes. However, this was only reported in around 4% of the patients in Latisse’s clinical study.
Other side effects that sometimes occur include redness of the eyelids, darkening of the skin, dryness of the eyes and irritation on the skin close to where Latisse has been applied. If you experience a change in your vision after using Latisse, you should immediately seek the advice of your optometrist.
How Quickly Can I Expect To See Results?
Luscious lashes don’t happen overnight, even with Latisse. Growth is gradual and individual results may vary. However, most people who have used Latisse have noticed longer lashes around 4 to 5 weeks after starting treatment, with optimum results visible around the 4-month mark.
Once you stop using Latisse, however, your eyelashes will eventually start to regress to their original state, but your optometrist will be able to speak to you about a maintenance plan.
How Much Does Latisse Cost?
One Latisse kit costs approximately $120 which includes one bottle and 30 single-use applicators. This price can vary depending on your supplier.
Keratoconus is a terrifying diagnosis for those that have experienced it. To compound issues, many patients complain that they had poor initial treatment due to a lack of understanding about the disease. If proper treatment is not achieved, individuals may experience a rapid deterioration in their ability to see. This leads to a reduced quality of life. You can reduce the stress related to a keratoconus diagnosis and increase the benefits of treatment by understanding your treatment options.
Keratoconus is an eye disease that causes the cornea to thin and bulge. This bulge generally takes on the appearance of a cone. As light enters the eye, it becomes distorted by the cone causing vision abnormalities.
Modern research is connecting keratoconus with an enzyme imbalance in the cornea. This imbalance leaves the eye susceptible to oxidative free radicals. Keratoconus has also been linked to UV damage, excessive eye rubbing, poorly fitting contacts, and chronic eye irritation.
While your eye professional will have the best understanding of what treatment option is right for you, we have compiled ten of the most common treatments here.
Corneal Cross-linking (CXL) – There are two different types of this procedure, but they both introduce riboflavin to the cornea in order to strengthen the corneal tissue and stop the bulging from progressing.
Custom Soft Contact Lenses – Soft contacts are generally more comfortable to wear than gas permeable lenses. Recently, some contact companies have been able to create a contact specifically to correct the issues related to mild and moderate cases of keratoconus.
Gas Permeable Contact Lenses – Gas permeable lenses are a hard contact lens that physically forces the eye to adhere to the lens shape. This allows for the correction of keratoconus. The fit is often time-consuming and may take several different lenses to achieve the proper fit.
Piggybacking Contact Lenses – This method is used for individuals who require a gas permeable lens but cannot tolerate wearing rigid contacts. Piggybacking utilizes a soft lens placed on the eye first, and then a gas permeable lens is placed over the top. This offers the comfort of soft contacts with the rigidity and clarity of the gas permeable lenses.
Prosthetic Lenses – This lens is used specifically for patients that have very advanced keratoconus and have ruled out other options. The advanced scleral lens also doubles as a protective prosthetic shell. There are special requirements to qualify for this lens though, so check with your eye care professional if this is an option for you.
Intacs – These implants are surgically placed in the eye. They are a small plastic insert that is inserted into the eye, just under the surface. This option is also designed for patients who could not use other contact lens types.
Topography-Guided Conductive Keratoplasty – This treatment option is still being researched, but it uses the energy from radio waves and small probes to map the surface of the eye. This detailed mapping allows for an appropriate treatment plan for the patient.
Corneal Transplant – Patients with advanced keratoconus may no longer be able to tolerate a contact lens, or the different lens types may not be correcting the issues. This surgery removes the damaged cornea and replaces it with a healthy cornea.
There is hope for individuals with keratoconus. Even though the disease is degenerative, many patients report restored vision and improved quality of life when the appropriate treatment plan is in place. If you have been diagnosed with keratoconus or are having problems with your vision, see your eye care professional today.