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5 REASONS TO HAVE AN EYE EXAM

Call 1-866-865-2020.

Eye exams save sight.

1) Even if You Don’t Wear Eyeglasses, You Still Need an Eye Exam.

Some sight-threatening eye diseases do not have early warning signs, and many can only be detected during a dilated eye exam. Some cataracts affect vision in such a gradual way that you do not notice the decreased vision. Half of all people with glaucoma are unaware that they even have the disease. Also, diabetics with diabetic retinopathy often do not experience symptoms when the disease is at its most treatable stage. Remember, the key to keeping good vision for a lifetime starts with early detection during an eye exam and early treatment.

2) Eye Exams Detect Other Health Problems Too

Most people don’t know that many general health problems are often first detected during a routine comprehensive eye exam. The reason is that the eye is the only place where blood vessels can be viewed in their natural state without a surgical procedure. Changes in the blood vessels of the eye or fluctuations in vision sometimes lead to the first diagnosis of common diseases such as diabetes, high blood pressure, arthrosclerosis (hardening of the arteries) and high cholesterol. Graves’ disease is often first noticed as protruding eyes and double vision. Neurologic diseases such as MS may be first suspected when an eye doctor finds changes in the eye and the optic nerve. Even cancer and brain tumors, although rare, are sometimes detected during an eye exam. Our board certified physicians are always looking out for your overall health and well-being; not just your vision.

3) Good Vision Increases Safety

Poor vision can have an adverse effect on many life issues, such as depression, increased car accidents, and drug-related errors, but none of these are more concerning to life than a fall. Falls are among the leading cause of death of people age 65+, and people with low vision are at even greater risk. Reduced contrast sensitivity, decreased depth perception, and a reduction in the field of vision can inhibit balance and one’s ability to detect environmental hazards. Increased safety is one of the most compelling reasons to have an annual eye exam.

4) Vision Affects a Child’s Success in Life

Did you know that 80% of all learning is through the visual system, and decreased vision can significantly affect educational success, athletic ability and even social interaction? Countless children are receiving poor grades simply because they cannot see the blackboard; causing them to lose a desire to learn, and even stunting their social skills. While most parents recognize the value of routine dental care, they often underestimate the importance of testing a child’s vision.

5) Changing Eyecare Technology

We are living in a time when sight-saving technology is changing at an astonishing rate. Conditions once considered untreatable are now able to be corrected with cutting-edge technology. Just a few years ago, someone with wet macular degeneration would have lost most, if not all of their vision, but now we can help them with sight-saving medications. A cataract surgery patient who has worn glasses their entire life now has a choice of a high tech lens implant so they never have to wear glasses again. These are just a couple of examples of what we are able to offer patients today. So even if you’ve been told in the past that your condition was untreatable, technology may have changed all that. Only with a comprehensive eye exam can you know for sure.

You Only Have 2 Eyes! Sight does more than let you see what is in front of you. It allows you to safely live your life to the fullest with the ones you love. Schedule your yearly eye exam today!

Call 1-866-865-2020 for an appointment today!

Dry Eyes in the media

In the health section of last week’s newspaper there were two reports, one from the popular Dr Disease. The other reviewed the simple task of blinking. Japanese researchers have found that our brain actually takes a brief break during a blink.

In previous blogs, I have discussed the need to blink to keep your eyes healthy and comfortable. And I mean real, close your eyes tight, type blinking. Not only will your eyes benefit, but your brain also gets a short break. Though brief, this seems to be a much needed rest during which we reflect over past and future issues.

I will also repeat the 20/20 rule for those of you who use a computer for long periods of time. After 20 minutes of use, take a 20 second break. Your eyes, and your brain, will thank you.

– By Richard Hector, MD

Comfort For Your Dry Eyes

7 Things You Might Not Know About Dry Eyes

1. Do you need another reason to quit smoking? Add Dry Eye Disease to the list. Recent studies have shown even second hand smoke is very harsh to the surface of the eye. There are so many toxic chemicals in cigarette smoke that can break down your protective tear film and the surface corneal tissue. If you are around a lot of cigarette smoke, you probably have noticed the need to increase the use of artificial tears. Also, smoking is known to be a strong contributor to the development of macular degeneration. Outside of family history, smoking is most common denominator in macular degeneration patients.

2. I know I’m spoiling your fun but alcohol is also not dry-eye-friendly. It causes dehydrate which is never good for Dry Eyes. And forget that drink on the plane because studies have shown that the atmosphere on a commercial aircraft is drier than any desert. Drink plenty of water on your trip instead.

3. Make-up and dry eyes: Make-up, such as waterproof eye make-up, mascara, shadow, etc., has a much higher discomfort rate and sometimes causes a toxic reaction to the sensitive skin of dry eye sufferers. Always keep your make-up fresh by disposing old bottles after 2-3 months. And thoroughly clean off your make-up every night before going to bed.

4. Contact lenses are not just an aggravating factor for dry eye sufferers, but they can even cause dry eye damage to the cornea. Daily disposable lenses are the safest contact lens for dry eye patients. And never, never wear your contacts if your eyes are red and uncomfortable.

5. We used to recommend that you avoid too much caffeine because it is a mild diuretic. But some recent studies have shown a reduced risk of dry eye in coffee drinkers, and that caffeine might actually stimulate tear production.

6. Did you know that children can also suffer from dry eyes, secondary to congenital endocrine, autoimmune and inflammatory disorders. If your child has persistent complaints of painful, irritated eyes, don’t ignore it… Bring it to the attention of your pediatrician or better yet, make a visit to an eyecare professional for an evaluation.

7. Those simple carbs that are bad for the waistline are also bad for your eyes. They compete with the complex carbs needed by ocular tissue and aggravate your dry eye symptoms.

If you are a Bradenton patient who’s concerned about the chronic discomfort of dry eyes or wish to seek dry eye treatment, then visit our eye surgery facility and meet with our expert ophthalmologists to discuss treatment options.

By Richard Hector, MD