At one point or another, all of us had taken a moment to pause and consider the possibility of “LASIK” (short for “laser in situ keratomileusis”). Before moving forward or dismissing the idea entirely, it’s important to understand both the benefits and downsides of this corrective surgery. Read more
As physically active beings, our bodies are prone to an occasional scratch, cut, or bruise every now and again. While some body parts are more resilient than others, when our eyes are exposed to damage it can set us back significantly. A scratch, puncture, or any other type of trauma to one’s cornea—the clear covering over the iris—creates a corneal abrasion.
Many different situations that can cause a corneal abrasion, the most common include getting poked in the eye, foreign objects like dust, dirt or sand lodging under the lid, rubbing eyes too hard, or a bacterial infection. For contact wearers, a corneal abrasion can occur by leaving contacts in for a long period of time or by using ill-fitting or unclean lenses. Thus, it is crucial for contact wearers to uphold sound contact maintenance, to avoid the chance of an abrasion occurring. If you find that your busy lifestyle does not afford you the time to nightly care for your lenses, consider daily contacts like the Acuvue 1-Day or other Dailies. More and more individuals are turning to this style of lenses in order to guarantee that they receive fresh, clean products every morning that, instead of worrying about storing and cleaning them at night, can simply toss.
It is rather difficult to ignore the discomfort leading up to an abrasion. Common symptoms may include feeling like there is sand in your eye, tearing, sensitivity to light, hazy vision, pain when opening and closing your eye, and blurred or loss of vision.
It is always important to refrain from rubbing your eyes if you feel that there is something stuck inside. This can cause the particle to further scrape and penetrate the cornea, causing an intense abrasion. Instead, try lifting your eyelid and blinking vigorously for a couple seconds in attempt to let it fall out. If that doesn’t work, make your way to the nearest faucet and place your eye under the running water to try and flush it out.
The type of treatment required for corneal abrasions depends on the amount of the damage, with most subsiding within 23-72 hours. Lesser injuries typically do not require any particular treatment, while larger abrasions may require application of a topical antibiotic for a few days. Deep scratches can cause scarring, which can impair vision and require a corneal transplant down the line.
Sometimes this condition may not be detected until hours after the first contact is made. It is important to pay close attention if you feel any type of discomfort occurring in your eyes. If you feel that your physical state is worsening, seek immediate medical care, as ignoring it can produce an unwanted infection. While corneal abrasions are not life threatening, and usually require a short recovery, it is still important to take action if you feel one initiating. Practicing eye safety and upholding proper maintenance will decrease the chance of a corneal abrasion, and increase the health and longevity of our eyes.
The importance of proper eye care hygiene for contact wearers cannot be stressed enough. On top of the grit and dust our eyes accumulate from the atmosphere throughout the day, there is also the added burden of interaction with fingers. If contact lenses are not properly cared for, it could result in hazy vision, sensitivity to light, and infection. Our eyes are extremely fragile organs; therefore, anything that that touches them should be completely sterile and nonthreatening. By following a few precautionary steps, your eyes can avoid contamination and continue in their mission of delivering optimal sight.
The first step before handling contacts is to make sure they have a sanitary finger to both transfer contacts onto and remove from eyes. Try to use a mild soap that won’t leave a film of oil or perfume on the lens, which could irritate the eye and impair vision. When drying your hands, use a clean, lint-free cloth towel or a fresh paper towel. It is crucial to make sure your hands are in the cleanest state possible, as they can be a breeding ground for germs and bacteria that could eventually end up on your eyes. For additional tips on how to put in your contact lenses, check out our instructional video.
Not all solutions are created equal in this product-saturated world. Since different types of lenses require certain solutions, it is important to consult with your doctor before choosing the best type of solution and brand. Additionally, it often it will say on the bottle which kinds of contacts it is compatible with. Also, be aware that not all eye drops are safe for contact wearers; therefore, try to only purchase products that are contact-friendly. Before storing your contacts in their cartridges overnight, place a dab of solution between your index finger and thumb and gently rub each lens to remove any lingering surface buildup. Of course, thoroughly cleaning your contacts is worthless if you just end up storing them in a dirty case. Be sure to clean your cases each time before usage and swap them out for new ones about every three months.
Contact wearers must be extremely conscientious when it comes to their eye health. Due to the added layer resting their eyes for long periods of time, making sure their lenses are continuously disinfected is crucial. Thoroughly cleaning each lens upon removal and before storing, while also making sure you are replacing them as dictated or else you are vulnerable to conditions corneal ulcers. To learn more about what happens if you wear contacts for too long, click here.
A few simple steps and precautionary procedures will ensure that your eyes are avoiding infections and functioning to the best of their ability. However, if you’re someone who has trouble adhering to the above suggestions, there are alternatives. Contacts like the Focus Dailies are meant to be worn for one day and then tossed at night in favor of a new pair the following morning; though it is absolutely crucial that your hands are clean when you pop them in, this kind of lens removes the need for nightly cleaning, solution or cases.
Just like all other bodily organs, our eyes are vulnerable to occasional malfunctions. When our eyes fall ill, it is crucial to take the necessary steps in order to quickly and effectively nurse them back to health. Indications of an eye infection can range from slight discomfort to severe pain, and can be anywhere from barely visible to an extreme reaction. Common symptoms of an infection can include itching, swelling, increased sensitivity to light, hazy or decreased vision, secretion of watery discharge, or visible redness on white area of the eye.
There are several ways in which an eye can catch an infection, but if you are proactive about maintaining its health, you can avoid an onset and ensure that your eyes live a long, healthy life. Below are some common causes of an eye infection and tips on how to avoid them.
Three of the most common infections are blepharitis, keratitis, and conjunctivitis. Blepharitis is an eye disorder that is usually linked to bacteria infections or skin disorders. When the bacterium reaches the eye, it inflames the oil glands along the outer edges of the eyelids, sometimes forming dandruff-like scales. Blepharitis, neither contagious nor permanently damaging to one’s eyesight, can usually be treated with hot compressing and a gentle eyelid cleansing.
Keratitis is a bacterial infection associated with the inflammation of the cornea and can cause pain, redness surrounding the pupil, hazy vision, tearing, or sensitivity to light. This condition is often caused by dry eyes, a chemical or physical injury, or an underlying medical issue. Keratitis can also crop up by wearing contacts for an extended length of time, and can be avoided.
Conjunctivitis, or more commonly known as pink eye, is a rather familiar ailment that most people have experienced at one point. Though most commonly bacteria-triggered, pink eye can also be contracted from viruses or allergies. It can be contracted simply by touching your eye with infected surface or object, resulting in an inflammation of the conjunctiva, or the outermost layer of the eyeball. It is important to know that while allergic pink eye is not contagious, bacterial and viral pink eye is and can be spread very easily. If you do contract this condition, it’s a good idea to switch out your contact lenses for a fresh pair in once the symptoms have passed in order to not aggravate the infection once again.
Sometimes it only takes is a tiny spec entering the eye for it to form a full-blown infection. Each day we are forced to face a dusty, gritty atmosphere, where it is extremely easy for tiny antagonists to invade and irritate our precious eyes. Ironically enough, eyelashes—designed to protect our eyes from foreign objects—can also be a cause of infection if entered into the eye and left over time. It is vital to immediately remove a foreign object once it is detected, as it could eventually pierce the outer layer, or cornea, and create an even larger problem. Treatment for this type of infection is dependent on the type of object, and the degree of contact made. Simply washing the eye with an eye wash solution or tap water can treat small particles, such as dust and grit. For larger foreign objects, or if you feel something may have penetrated the eye, seek professional attention.
Being conscientious of the eyes’ susceptibilities will help ward off unwanted infections. Never let anything that is prone to bacteria—which is just about everything—come in contact with your eyes. Contact wearers should be especially conscientious of proper eye hygiene, seeing as they are more in direct contact with their eyes than non-contact wearers. It is important to be sure sure that lenses are removed with clean fingers, and stored in sanitary solution over night. For the most hygienic option available, consider one-day contact options by Acuvue. Treating your eyes with the care and attention they require will decrease the likelihood of an infection, keep your eyes happy and healthy for years to come.
As two of our most precious biological commodities, our eyes require constant upkeep to ensure long-lasting, optimal performance. While a nutritious diet and proper maintenance will certainly help warrant a strong condition, there are additional precautionary measures to also keep in mind. One in particular is allowing them to breathe! Making sure our eyes receive a consistent flow of oxygen is crucial to their overall health. As you can imagine, wearing contact lenses everyday makes the process of absorbing oxygen somewhat difficult. However, understanding why oxygen is important to eye health should motivate contact wearers to lift the blanket of lenses regularly and allow air to flow through.
Imagine this; the year is 1888. As you walk around town you suddenly realize that you cannot read a single sign in the windows and have difficulty seeing farther than 40 feet away…you shudder when you think of the weight and discomfort glasses. However, luckily for you, there’s a new product available: contact lenses!
Indeed, the contact lens actually has quite a long and thoroughly developed history. In fact, the idea of the contact lens can be attributed to Leonardo da Vinci in his 1508 writing The Codex of the Eye, Manual D where he mentions altering corneal power by “wearing a water-filled glass hemisphere over the eye.” Another similar, but impractical idea was proposed by Rene Descartes in 1636 and in 1801 Thomas Young produced a prototype based on Descartes’ idea but it failed to fully correct vision and still required glasses. It wasn’t until 1845 that John Herschel presented an idea for contact lenses that would become the foundation of the modern contact lens, starting a chain of events that would revolutionize the way we see the world.
1887: F.E. Muller creates the first glass-blown contact lens that can be seen worn, seen through, and tolerated. However, there is no indication this lens provided any vision correction.
1888: A German ophthalmologist named Adolf Fick made and fitted true contact lenses out of heavy blown glass that were about 18mm thick. However, because these lenses were so large and uncomfortable they could only be worn for a few hours at a time. Also, the glass did not allow ANY oxygen to the eye.
1936: With the development of Plexiglass; William Feinbloom was able to create scleral contact lenses out of a combination or plastic and glass for a model that was lighter and exponentially more convenient than its predecessors.
1947-1949: Though the exact date is not nailed down, it is generally agreed that during this time period the first corneal contact lenses were developed. They sat on the cornea as opposed to the entire eye and were made entirely of plastic so they are infinitely more comfortable, enabling them to be utilized for up to 16 hours at a time. However, unlike many of today’s adaptations, oxygen was unable to permeate the eye.
1960’s-1970: This decade saw the advent of the rigid-gas permeable lens which maintained the rigidness of the full plastic lenses while allowing oxygen to reach the eye. These RGP lenses are still useful today in certain applications. (Development in comfort and usability continues today for RGP lenses).
1971: The first hydrogel material was approved by the FDA in the USA for use in contact lenses. Lenses made of “Soflens” were the first soft contacts in the USA —these lenses quickly exceeded RGP lenses in popularity due to their comfort and ease of use.
1972: The concept of disposable soft contact lenses was suggested for the first time.
1998: The soft contact lens was revolutionized with the development of silicone hydrogel. These newer lenses combined the performance of soft contact lenses with the incredible oxygen permeability of silicone.
2014: Almost all soft lenses available today are made of silicone hydrogel. Contact manufacturers continue to develop ways of adding molecules to the silicone hydrogel to improve comfort, like the internal wetting molecules featured by such prominent brands as Acuvue.
Not many people realize that contact lenses have as long a history of steady advancement as they do; and all this development certainly benefits the consumer. Recent developments have enabled those with astigmatism to wear contacts, as well as cosmetic possibilities that temporarily change the color of the iris. Browse our selection of contact lenses to celebrate the latest advances in sight enhancement today.
Blepharitis is an eye condition affecting the eyelids that is characterized by inflamed, swollen and irritated skin with dandruff-like crust on the eyelashes. The effects can include abnormal itching near the eyes, excessive tearing, dryness and redness. While the severity can be varied, harsher cases can lead to briefly blurred vision! Though such symptoms are frustrating and, perhaps, scary, it’s important to note though that it is extremely unlikely that there will be any lasting damage to eyesight. To learn how to avert and treat this commonplace condition, keep reading!
What causes Blepharitis?
Bacteria is the main culprit behind this condition, but it isn’t the only factor that can spur on Blepharitis. Allergic reactions to medications and makeup can lead to oil glands in the eyelids operating improperly, as can the buildup of dandruff. It isn’t uncommon for Blepharitis to be accompanied by other eye conditions that are also stimulated on by the excessive presence of germs, like sties and chalazion.
How can I prevent Blepharitis?
- The most critical step to preventing flare-ups is to keep the eyelids clear of bacteria. The primary approach is to wash the area at least once each day with a cleanser specifically designed for the face. Your doctor may have a recommendation based on your particular history or circumstance.
- Using dandruff shampoo on your scalp can help to avert flakes from forming and later falling into your eyes.
- ALWAYS wash makeup from your face at night. For additional tips on how to safely and cleanly use cosmetics, click here.
- Keeping your contact lenses sterile is also very important in regards to Blepharitis, as unclean lenses can allow bacteria to grow and be transferred to the eye. The easiest way to ensure fresh contacts is to use daily disposable contact lenses that require zero upkeep, like the Acuvue 1 Day. Alternatively, make sure you properly clean lenses and use the right contact solution as recommended by your doctor.
What do I do if I suspect I have Blepharitis?
If you suspect that you have Blepharitis, it is important to visit an optometrist. A medical professional can do a comprehensive eye exam to properly diagnose the symptoms. Ruling out the possibility of Pink Eye is essential, as this much more serious ailment is extremely contagious.
How can Blepharitis be treated?
Steady cleaning can usually diminish the symptoms of Blepharitis. In addition to the preventative steps listed above, nightly rest a wet, warm towel over the eyelids to loosen the crust on the lashes. Following this, gently wipe the surface with a diluted solution of baby shampoo. If symptoms persist, a medical professional may prescribe antibiotics.
While incidents may be one-time incidences, it often is a reoccurring condition. However, with proper hygiene, flare-ups can be minimized as to not interfere with your everyday life.
A balanced diet is critical for overall health, but did you know that there are certain nutrients that can help strengthen your sight and optical health? The likelihood of developing age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and cataracts can be limited by strategically incorporating certain foods into your meals. Sound simple enough? Keep reading!
You can be proactive about your eye’s health. There is evidence showing that risk of cataracts and macular degeneration (damage to the retina) can be reduced with an increase in consumption of the carotenoids lutein and zeaxanthin. According to some studies, the consumption of omega-3 fatty acids may slow the progression of early onset AMD. It is also possible that eating increased amounts of vitamins C and E may reduce the risk of cataracts or AMD, though take note that this assertion has been debated by experts and researchers.
It is important to discuss any intent to dramatically increase consumption of vitamins and minerals with your general practitioner. These trained medical professionals can direct you to vitamins that may help, as well as look out for potential side-effects. For example, there is an increased risk of heart failure in at-risk persons aggressively upping their consumption of Vitamin E. Your doctors will be able to recommend particular doses to you to make sure that you stay fit and healthy.
Fortunately, consuming additional nutrients such as lutein and zeaxanthin does not have to be inconvenient or bothersome…in fact, it can be quite tasty! Many delicious foods contain these nutrients and increasing the amount of those foods you eat can help you be proactive in preserving your eyesight. Consider adding the following foods to your diet:
• Leafy greens. Kale, collard greens, spinach, romaine lettuce, turnip greens, peas, broccoli, green beans, etc.
• Citrus fruits and juices such as oranges, grapefruits, mandarins and more.
• Vegetables high in Vitamin C like Brussels sprouts, bell peppers, leafy greens, and carrots.
• Red meat, liver, shellfish, milk, beans. These foods contain high amounts of zinc, a helpful aid to the body when it comes to night vision.
• Eggs and other non-meat proteins like nuts and sunflower seeds.
• Fish. Fatty acids like Omega-3 are very good for overall health and can help improve retina function and vision development. If you do not like seafood options like salmon and tuna, you can take supplements can help as well.
• Carrots are loaded with beta-carotene—a nutrient that seriously strengthens night vision.
Consuming a balanced diet with some of these foods included in that diet can help prevent cataracts and age-related macular degeneration. The key word here is balanced…it is important not to consume one of these foods in excess—you may miss the benefits of other foods and depending on your personal situation; eating too much of one nutrient may have unexpected consequences. Be sure to discuss any dietary change with your doctor.
For additional insights into maintaining clear and healthy vision, visit the eye health section of our blog today!
Contrary to popular belief, winter air is usually drier than the other seasons. Surprised? This lack of humidity can make eyes feel a bit more red and scratchy. Unfortunately, there is little comfort to be found going indoors to reduce exposure to the winter air, as heaters dry out the air inside buildings and can contribute to the arid feeling your eyes. So how in the world can a person make it through winter without suffering from the miserable itching and burning that accompanies dry eyes? Consider the following prevention and treatment tips. Read more →
Dry eyes and itching, sneezing and sniffing; no one is going to argue that allergies are anything but miserable. What’s more, contact lenses can further aggravate the symptoms, by potentially trapping allergens under the lens. The result is redness and irritation that can make going about your day infinitely more unpleasant. How can we battle the allergies that can strike at any time during the year? By taking a three-pronged approach. The first step is to limit the body’s exposure to the germs, the second is to treat existing symptoms and the third is to minimize the affect contact lenses has on the allergies.