I see fine. Why do I need to see an Eye Doctor?
Regular eye exams are the only way to catch “silent” diseases such as diabetes, glaucoma and other conditions in their early stages, when they’re more easily managed or treated. Many conditions can be discovered in a carefully planned eye exam. Those who consider mass-produced, over the counter reading glasses are truly doing themselves a disservice, both financially and medically. One-size-fits-all reading glasses not only do not work well for most people who have a different prescription in each eye, and/or astigmatism, or whose lens and frame parameters are not measured correctly, they bypass the opportunity to have their eyes checked for early detection of many manageable diseases or conditions. For those insisting on selecting glasses not measured specifically for their eyes, headache and eye fatigue are common symptoms.
How can I stop glare at night or at a computer?
There can be many causes for this condition. However, many times this problem can be alleviated, or even dismissed, with the use of non-glare lenses. First and foremost, however, annual or semi annual eye exams are the ONLY avenue to your eye health, and the ONLY resource to ascertain the correct reason or cause for any ailment! That being said, and once any medical or physical condition is removed as a possibility of cause, then the perfect solution for glare on computer screens, or glare from night driving would be CRIZAL® Advanced with Scotchguard. CRIZAL® has made astronomical advances with new non-glare technology. Most non-glare lenses have an non-glare coating applied to a finished lens. CRIZAL® has discovered how to manage a lens with new non-glare technology, so the lens is not non-glare coated, but the non-glare actually becomes a component of the lens. This is accomplished during the manufacturing of the lens, thereby giving superior resiliency, scratch protection, and durability.
Do I need an optometrist or an ophthalmologist?
Both are eye doctors that diagnose and treat many of the same eye conditions. The American Optometric Association defines Doctors of Optometry as: primary health care professionals who examine, diagnose, treat and manage diseases and disorders of the visual system, the eye and associated structures as well as diagnose related systemic conditions. They prescribe glasses, contact lenses, low vision rehabilitation, vision therapy and medications as well as perform certain surgical procedures.
The main difference between the two, is that ophthalmologists perform surgery, where an optometrist would not, preferring to specialize in eye examinations, as well as eyeglass and contact lens related services.
Optometrists would be involved in all of the pre-and post-operative care of these surgical patients; collecting accurate data, educating the patient, and insuring proper healing after the procedure. An ophthalmologist is more of a medical related specialist, who would need only to be involved if some kind of surgery were being considered. An optometrist can treat most any eye condition, including the use of topical or oral medications if needed. This might include the treatment of glaucoma, eye infections, allergic eye conditions, dry eyes and others, to name just a few.
A third “O” that often is overlooked is the optician. An optician is not a doctor, and they cannot examine your eye under their own license. However, a highly trained optician plays an indispensable role in the most successful eye doctor’s offices. An optician most often handles the optical, contact lens, and glasses side of things. Based on their vast knowledge of lenses, lens technology and frames, they manufacture eyeglasses, as well as assist in the selection of eyewear based on the requirements of each individual patient.
Can I use no-line bifocals with fashionably smaller frames?
Yes. Varilux® progressive lenses will allow you to use smaller frames while maintaining terrific vision at all distances. The visual channel that progresses from distance vision to near vision is wider and more accurate for that intermediate vision necessary for clarity in the area too far for close and too close for far. It is a wonderful lens for desktop and computer use as well.
Am I a good candidate for refractive surgery?
Patients who are at least 18 years of age, have healthy eyes that are free from retinal problems, corneal scars, and any eye diseases are generally suitable. Many patients who are nearsighted, farsighted or have astigmatism are potential candidates. We will also discuss your lifestyle needs to help you decide if LASIK is the best alternative for you. If you would like to schedule a free LASIK consultation, please contact our office.
Why can I no longer focus on objects up close?
Vision changes occur naturally as you age. When you reach your 40’s, focusing at close range becomes difficult. This is a natural part of the aging process caused by a gradual hardening of the eye’s crystalline lens, reducing its ability to change shape and focus at near. This condition is called Presbyopia.
What are progressive lenses and how do they differ from ordinary bifocals?
Progressive addition lenses feature a continuous, clear field of vision from distance, through the intermediate ranges to near without the use of annoying bifocal lines. Bifocal lenses use very old technology. Abrupt and awkward changes between distance and near prescriptions are separated by annoying lines that can be frustrating to wear. Please discuss with our optometrist to see if progressive lenses would be right for you.
How can I reduce the thickness and weight of my eyeglass lenses?
Eyeglass lenses are available in a variety of different materials that will reduce both thickness and weight. Including ???. Smaller frames also reduce lens thickness and weight. Your eye care professional will consider prescription, frame size, and your individual lifestyle as factors in helping you decided which lens material will be best for you.
What exactly is a cataract?
A cataract is a cloudiness of the eye's natural lens, which lies between the front and back areas of the eye.
My doctor says I have a cataract, but he wants to wait a while before removing it. Why?
A cataract usually starts very small and practically unnoticeable but grows gradually larger and cloudier. Your doctor is probably waiting until the cataract interferes significantly with your vision and your lifestyle. You need to continue to visit your eye doctor regularly so the cataract's progress is monitored. Some cataracts never really reach the stage where they should be removed. If your cataract is interfering with your vision to the point where it is unsafe to drive, or doing everyday tasks is difficult, then it's time to discuss surgery with your doctor.
What exactly is glaucoma?
Glaucoma is a condition in which the eye's intraocular pressure (IOP) is too high. This means that your eye has too much aqueous humor in it, either because it produced too much, or because it's not draining properly. Other symptoms are optic nerve damage and vision loss. Glaucoma is a silent disease that robs the patient of their periphial vision. Early detection is very important.
What exactly is macular degeneration?
Macular degeneration is a condition in which the eye's macula breaks down, causing a gradual or sudden loss of central vision. There are two forms called wet and dry. Patients need a detailed retinal eye exam to determine if they have this condition.
Who's at the most risk for macular degeneration?
If you're over age 65, a smoker, african american, have vascular health problems, or have a family member with macular degeneration, you have an increased risk for macular degeneration.
You're also at risk if you take these drugs: Aralen (chloroquine) or phenothiazine derivatives [Thorazine (chlorpromazine), Mellaril (thioridazine), Prolixin (fluphenazine), Trilafon (perphenazine) and Stelazine (trifluoperazine)].
Is there any way to prevent macular degeneration?
Doctors aren't sure how to prevent macular degeneration. Research suggests that ultraviolet light (and possibly blue light) factors into the problem, so sunglasses could be very beneficial.
What you eat also affects your macula. Researchers know that antioxidants (vitamins A, C and E), zinc, lutein, zeaxanthin and essential fatty acids all can aid in preventing and slowing down macular degeneration. Read more about nutrition and eye health. Ask your doctor about recommended nutritional supplements.
Exercising and quitting smoking might also be helpful.
I have "spots" floating around in my eye. Should I be worried?
Spots and floaters are usually harmless. However, in some cases it can be a sign of a retinal detachment or bleeding. Anyone experiencing symptoms of flashing lights and flashing spots should contact our office immediately for a detailed eye exam.
What exactly does "20/20 vision" mean?
"20/20 vision" is commonly accepted as the standard of normal distance vision for a human being. Basically it means "good visual acuity at 20 feet." So if your vision is 20/20, you can read certain sizes of letters on a Snellen chart clearly at 20 feet or closer. But if your friend has 20/15 vision, his visual acuity is better than yours: you would have to stand 15 feet away from the chart to read the smaller letters that he can read while standing 20 feet away. Conversely, someone with 20/30 vision has worse distance vision than you.
By the way, visual acuity at a distance isn't the only measure of how good your vision is. You could have 20/20 distance vision but still have difficulty seeing at night because of poor contrast sensitivity. Or you could have near vision problems because you're over 40 and experiencing presbyopia.