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Rare Eye Diseases

Rare Eye Diseases

In our world of modern medicine early detection and treatment has vastly improved our eye health. Thanks to regular health screenings and check ups doctors are able to monitor changes, even minor ones, effectively. This has helped detect, treat and in some cases cure countless eye diseases that could otherwise have caused permanent damage. In today’s post we’re going to take a look at a few rare eye diseases – let’s begin!

Rare Eye Diseases

  • Aniridia – this rare eye condition is diagnosed at birth. And outlines a person that has either partial or a complete lack of an iris. With no, or a very partial iris the person affected will typically have impaired vision. As well as an extreme sensitivity to light.
  • Non-24-Hour Sleep-Wake Disorder (Non-24) – this condition occurs in people who are completely blind. Unable to perceive any amount of light their “internal clocks” are unable to sync to the typical 24 hour day-night cycle. Resulting in daytime sleepiness and a general disruption to the typical rhythms of life.
  • Leber Hereditary Optic Neuropathy – is a condition that is primarily found in men. It is classified as sudden vision loss typically during life as a young adult. This happens when a genetic code is mutated causing mitochondria. Because the eyes need a lot of energy when it fails to receive the needed energy the mitochondria experience failure which causes the retinal ganglion cells to die. This condition will often appear as blurred vision and can develop rapidly. The rate at which this disease develops varies from patient to patient.

Regular Visits

When it comes to your eye health there is nothing better than scheduling regular visits with your eye doctor. Often times, early detection makes the difference between negative and long term damage. And prevention and prolonged health or even curing a condition. If you are experiencing changes to your eye health or are experiencing unusual symptoms contact your doctor today and schedule a check up!

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Natural Eye Care Tips

Natural Eye Care Tips

Whether you are looking into preventive natural eye care tips for yourself.  Or your doctor recommended you add some care into your eye care routine we have some tips for you!  Our eyes and our eye health is an important part of our daily life. And when our vision is compromised it makes a profound impact on our lives.  That’s why we wanted to share with you some nature eye care tips. By adding eye care into your daily routine you can help keep your vision in its proper health.  Let’s begin by looking at our top natural eye care tips.

Natural Eye Care Tips

  1. Proper Eye Protection

We cannot stress this tip enough!  When you are outdoors, cloud or shine, be sure you wear sunglasses that provide you with UVA/UVB protection!  Also, when you are doing any kind of project that could result in particles or debris getting into your eyes be sure to wear proper eye protection such as safety glasses.

  1. Eye Health Friendly Diet

One simple and natural thing you can do for your eye health is eat an eye health friendly diet.  By incorporating natural food sources of vitamins and nutrients your eyes need to stay healthy!

  1. Rest Your Eyes

When you are trying to improve your eye health one thing you can do is give your eyes a rest!  This means stepping away from screens including your t.v., phone or computer. Giving your eyes a break not only reduces strain but helps prevent your eyes from developing serious problems later on.

As you can see taking care of your eyes doesn’t have to include extensive work or fancy gadgets.  In fact as long as you make a point to do something positive for your eye health daily you’re off to a great start!  Of course, we cannot recommend the importance of visiting your doctor regularly to have your vision checked.

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Diabetes and Your Eye Health

Diabetes and Your Eye Health

As we age there are a number of things that factor into your eye health.  For example, expectant mothers and menopausal women can experience changes in their vision.  Quitting smoking and maintaining a healthy diet are also factors that can impact your vision.  It should not come as a surprise that diabetes can also impact your eye health. That’s why in today’s post we’re going to take a closer look at diabetes and your eye health.  In order to help you better understand conditions that may arise in regards to your eyes. Let’s begin!

Diabetes and Your Eye Health

People who suffer from diabetes are at risk for developing the following conditions:  Diabetic Retinopathy or Diabetic Macular Edema. All of these conditions come with the risk of developing sight loss and blindness in one or both eyes.

  • Diabetic Retinopathy

This is the most common eye condition that occurs with diabetes.  When this occurs there are changes to the retinal blood vessels. When the light sensitive tissues is affected it can cause blindness or vision loss.

  • Diabetic Macular Edema

This typically occurs along with diabetic retinopathy.  And is classified as swelling in the macula, the area in the back of your eye.  Typically because there is a backup of excess fluid in your eye.

Cataracts and glaucoma are other conditions that can arise in people suffering from diabetes.

Talk with Your Doctor

When living with diabetes it is critical that you follow your doctor’s advice for the care and management of your condition.  If you suffer from diabetes be sure to undergo an eye examination annually to assure that your eyes are maintaining their health.  Because diabetic retinopathy and diabetic macular edema often go unnoticed until vision loss occurs proactive action is important. If you have been diagnosed with diabetes and have noticed loss of vision contact your eye doctor today.

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Your Eyes and Your Health

Your Eyes and Your Health

You’ve probably heard it said that the eyes are the window to the soul.  While that may or may not be true researchers have made an interesting discovery.  That your eyes may actually help evaluate your overall health. As well as indicate whether or not you may be prone to or have underlying diseases or illnesses.

Your Eyes and Your Health

So if your eyes can help tip doctors off to potential health risks how exactly does it work?  What are doctors looking for when examining your eyes? Research tells us the signs that they are looking for are very small and in most cases tiny.  By observing small changes within the blood vessels within your eye they are able to make out indicators. These indicators can help shed some light on the overall health of your body.  Alerting doctors to underlying health issues or diseases such as,

  • Diabetes
  • STD’s
  • Hypertension
  • High Cholesterol
  • Many More

Your eyes can also help indicate if there are any changes occurring within your mental health.  Conditions such as Alzheimer’s in some cases can be detected through careful and thorough eye examinations. The key to properly treating these health issues and diseases is early diagnosis.  Through regular examinations and communication with your doctor you can take steps to improve your health.

Visit Your Eye Doctor

We cannot stress enough the importance of visiting your eye doctor regularly.  With regular exams your doctor will be able to track and be made aware of any changes taking place in your eyes.  This can also help them notice if there could be any underlying health conditions that are affecting your overall health.  Remember that if you have any health concerns or questions we recommend visiting your doctor to further discuss and properly diagnose you.  If you have any health concerns contact your doctor today.

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Eye Floaters: What Are They?

Eye Floater

Perhaps you’ve seen them.  A tiny shadow or shape in the corner of your eye or something that seems to cross your vision.  You try to focus to have a closer look only to find that the shadow has disappeared. What was that?  Are you seeing ghosts? Chances are you didn’t see anything supernatural or even unnatural for that matter.  In today’s post we’re going to share some information and answer a common question regarding eye floaters: what are they?  And show you that they really aren’t anything to be worried about. Let’s begin by looking closer at what an eye floater is exactly.

Eye Floaters: What Are They?

Typically eye floaters consist of microscopic fibers or a jelly like substance that clumps together in your eye.  It is believed that these occur naturally as we age. So why do we see shadows or specks in our vision? This happens when the clump of fibers happen to be in just the right spot to cast a shadow on your retina.  Typically this only lasts a few seconds but sometimes it’s possible for a floater to be seen for a few moments. A floater is lodged in just the right spot that you can see it when you look in certain directions and when the light is just right.

What Can You Do About Eye Floaters?

Commonly an eye floater is nothing to be concerned about.  Over time they will begin to sink to the bottom of your eye where you cannot see them anymore.  In rare occasions if one is disrupting your vision doctors can surgically remove them. However, that is typically not the case and is unnecessary.  If an eye floater is causing discomfort we highly recommend seeing your eye doctor. Along with receiving annual eye check ups to ensure that your eyes stay in optumhealth!  Only your doctor can accurately diagnose and treat eye conditions and symptoms.

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What Women Need to Know About Their Eye Health

Womens Eye Health

April is women’s eye health and safety month and in honor of women everywhere we are focusing in on women’s eye health.  We’re going to do that by addressing some specific tips and advice we have regarding what women need to know about their eye health.  As well as looking at the causes that may affect your eyesight.

What Women Need to Know About Their Eye Health

  • Pregnancy.  This is one thing that can dramatically affect women’s eyesight.  Because women experience steady changes or extreme fluctuations in their hormones this is one factor that can result in changes in their eyesight.  To learn more about the specific vision changes that can occur during pregnancy check out this list compiled by BabyCenter.
  • Higher Risk.  According to the National Eye Institute being a woman puts you at higher risk for eye disease.  They have reported that ⅔ of blindness and visual impairment is made up of women. And that they have greater instances of eye diseases, such as age-related macular degeneration, glaucoma, and cataract.

Because of their higher risk and the impact pregnancy and changing hormones.  This can have on a woman’s vision we recommend the following action.

Talk to Your Doctor Regularly.  We cannot stress the importance of routine doctor visits and talking with your doctor regularly.  Especially if you notice any changes in vision. As always we recommend seeing your eye doctor annually in order to keep track of any changes that may occur during the year.

Eat Healthy.  We cannot stress enough the importance of a balanced diet or the importance of taking vitamins to help supplement your eye health.  In fact having a balanced diet and taking vitamins preventively can have a significant impact on your vision.

This April as we focus on women’s eye health and safety remember to reach out to the women in your life.  And remind them to take the time to take care of their eye health. Schedule an appointment with your eye doctor and begin taking steps to preserve your vision.

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Contact Lense Basics: What You Need to Know

Contact Lense Basics

Because there are over 30 million contact lense wearers in the U.S. alone we decided it would be valuable to share contact lense basics: what you need to know.  In order to help educate contact lense wearers and their family on the use and basics care of lenses.  Especially if you are a parent of a child that wears contact lenses here are a few tips to keep in mind.  To ensure your, or your loved ones, lenses are being used appropriately.

Contact Lense Basics: What You Need to Know

Whether you or a loved one wears contact lenses here are a few tips to help ensure you get the best use out of them.  Be sure to follow your doctors instructions especially when it comes to wear time.  For example do not wear lenses for longer than the prescribed time.   Because some will be specifically made for all day/all night wear and others are for day wear only be sure you check with your doctor about your lenses.  A common mistake made by lense wearers is that they will take naps, even short naps while wearing their lenses.  This can result in keratitis, which is inflammation of the cornea and can result in infection as well as altering the shape of your eye/cornea.

Another important tip we recommend is making sure that your hands are always clean when handling your contact lenses.  Like many prescriptions contact lenses have an expiration or a “life span”.  Talk to your doctor to learn how long your lenses should last and when you should replace them.  Using old and worn out lenses can inadvertently cause eye damage.

Talk to Your Doctor

As always we encourage you to talk with your doctor concerning your contact lense and eye care needs.  It’s important to keep in mind that over time your eyes can change so regular visits to your doctor can ensure that your eyes stay in optumhealth.

 

 

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Color Blindness: Know the Basics

Color Blindness: Know the Basics

Color blindness impacts a considerably large range of people both male and female.  In fact color blindness affects nearly 8% of the male population and .5% of the female population.  Whether you or a loved one has been recently diagnosed with color blindness or if you’re trying to access whether or not you are affected.  In today’s post we’re going to take a closer to at color blindness: know the basics in order to help inform you of this common condition.  We’re going to address a common misconception and explain what really causes the condition.  Let’s begin by addressing a common misconception followed by the reality of this condition.

Color Blindness: Know the Basics

Just hearing the name, “Color Blindness” will often cause people to imagine living in a world void of color.  People usually imagine black and white episodes of Leave It To Beaver on old colorless screen television sets.  Or that their vision is similar to your canine companion – dogs don’t see color, right?  The truth is neither of these are true.  In fact most people affected by color blindness will have difficulty seeing pairs of colors while the rest are visible with no problem.

Common Color Combinations and Causes

The most common combinations of colors that color blind people have difficulty seeing are: red and green, being the most common, followed by blue and yellow.  However, there can be variations depending on the individual.

Now, you may be wondering what causes color blindness?  The answer is simpler than you may think, in fact, most color blindness is caused by genetics.  Inherited color blindness is the most popular form.  However, it is possible to for color blindness to appear when the eye experienced chemical or physical damage.

As always whether you or a loved one is exhibiting signs of color blindness we strongly recommend visiting your eye doctor.  Only a professional can diagnose and properly treat eye conditions.

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Visual Stress: Know the Signs

Visual Stress: Know the Signs

 

We know that the day to day stress on our eyes from electronic screens to school work, homework and reading can be taxing.  Leaving our eyes feeling tired and dry.  What if there was more to your eye fatigue?  In some cases you may be experiencing a more severe case of visual stress.  In today’s post we’re going to take a closer look at visual stress and a possible solution for people suffering from this condition.

What is Visual Stress?

Visual stress describes a condition where the person affected notices symptoms within 10 to 15 minutes – if not immediately – when they begin reading.  This can leave their eyes feeling strained and uncomfortable.  In some cases eye stress can leave you with headaches or migraines!  Not only is it uncomfortable it can cause the person affected to miss information resulting in frequent mistakes.  Could you or someone you love be suffering from visual stress?  Below we’ve compiled a list of common, but not inclusive, signs you may be experiencing visual stress.

Signs of Visual Stress

Rapid eye fatigue, skipping lines or words while reading, text moves/floats/shifts/waves while reading.  Difficulty copying text, headaches or migraines occur while reading, difficulty tracking words on pages/screens.

These are just a few common symptoms of visual stress.  We encourage you to visit your doctor if you have symptoms like these and have your eyes evaluated.  It can be incredibly difficult to endure these symptoms on a daily basis.  If someone you love or if you are dealing with these on a daily basis we recommend seeing your doctor.  They can then help you determine a course of action to begin reducing eye strain.  One interesting, although controversial, solution is tinted lenses.  While the effects are disputed it is an interesting idea on reducing visual stress.

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Simple Tips to Help Prevent Dry Eyes

Simple Tips to Help Prevent Dry Eyes

As the weather is changing and ushering in cold, dry winter weather it’s no wonder more people experience dry eyes.  Not only do we have the climate contributing to dry eyes but there are a number of other factors as well.  In today’s post we’re going to look at the common contributors to winter dry eyes as well as simple tips to help prevent dry eyes!

Contributors to Winter Dry Eyes

Not only do we have the winter climate to deal with but we have these unavoidable factors as well.  As the temperatures drop most of us turn up the heat.  In our homes we fire up our furnaces, in our office spaces we have space heaters, and in our cars we turn up our heaters.  Unfortunately while these things help keep our spaces comfortable they do a number on our eyes!

Simple Tips to Help Prevent Dry Eyes

Because it’s impossible to avoid these winter time necessities here are some tips to help prevent excessive dryness.

1. On the Go

To help prevent dry eyes while driving follow this simple tip – keep your air vents pointed away from your face.

2. At Home

A simple way you can improve the air in your home my come as a surprise.  To help prevent dry eyes at home invest in a humidifier.

3. Talk to Your Doctor

If you suffer through wintry dry eyes we recommend talking with your doctor.  While occasional dry eyes can be remedied by over the counter eye drops severe or extra dry eyes may require professional care.

Now you can see how a few simple changes can make a difference.  We hope this post has been insightful and these tips will help you enjoy the winter season free from dry eyes!  To learn more about the leading causes of dry eyes visit our prior post.