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Month: March 2017

The Right (and the Wrong) Way to Clean Your Glasses

There is nothing worse than a dirty spot on your glasses – well except perhaps many dirty spots or smudges. When that happens, most of us are tempted to grab the corner of our shirt and wipe it off, but resist the temptation – this is actually not a good idea.

 

There is a right way and a wrong way to clean your glasses. Cleaning your glasses properly will not only remove irritating dirt and smudges, but will also prevent your lenses from getting scratched allowing you to see your best.

 

You want to make sure that the materials you use to clean your lenses are clean and soft. The reason your shirt corner is not the best option is because it likely contains dust or particles that can scratch your lens. However, you don’t need fancy, lens cleaners either. In truth the best cleaner for your glasses may be more simple than you expect –

 

Gentle Dish Soap

That’s right, a gentle dish soap, warm water and a clean, dry soft cotton towel are the best tools you can have for cleaning your lenses.

 

Simply rinse your glasses in warm water and apply a small drop of soap (make sure to use a brand of soap that is lotion and moisturizer free). Rub the soap into the lens with your fingers and rinse thoroughly until all of the soap has been removed. Gently shake the glasses to remove excess water and then dry with a clean, dry, lint-free towel.

 

You may be wondering about the microfiber lens cloths and spray cleaner you get from your optician. These lens cleaning packs are great for when you are on the go and don’t have access to a sink and dish soap. The microfiber cloths are also great for polishing dry lenses after any dust or particles are blown away- just make sure they are cleaned regularly. For a real, thorough clean however, we advise that you use the technique above. 

 

Cleaning Don’ts

Don’t use vinegar, glass or window cleaner, bleach, ammonia or spit/saliva for cleaning your lenses. The chemicals could strip off the coatings on your lenses, and saliva – well, it just doesn’t work. In particular, many lenses these days have anti-glare treatments that are especially prone to damage if not cleaned properly and are particularly vulnerable to window cleaners and alcohol. 

 

Remember once your glasses are scratched, there is little to do to repair them. If you see something on your lens try to blow or brush it away carefully before you use a cloth to clean your lenses. 

 

Keeping Your Lenses Clean

To avoid dirt and smudges, always take your glasses off with two hands using the arms of the frame and avoid touching the lenses. Further, the best way to preserve your glasses and keep them clean is to keep them in a case when they are not in use. It’s worthwhile to get an extra case or two to have on hand in the car or in your purse for times that you need to take your glasses off. If you notice swirled or circular scratches on your lenses, those are almost always from improper cleaning so make sure to take the time to clean them properly the next time.

 

 

4 Telltale Signs That You Need to Have an Eye Exam

by Jamie Peters

Undergoing regular eye exams is an important part of your preventive eye care efforts. While we generally recommend having an eye exam once every year, if any of the four signs below apply to you, we recommend visiting us here at Vision Solutions as soon as possible.

1. You Have a Family History of Vision-Threatening Conditions

If any of your relatives have had sight-threatening problems, this increases your risk of developing them too. Some chronic medical diseases, like diabetes, may also cause eye-related complications. We recommend having your eyes checked regularly if you or any family members are diabetic.

2. You Have a Hard Time Seeing Close-Range or Far-Range Objects

If you suddenly notice difficulties carrying out close- or far-range activities, you may have a refractive error. We suggest visiting our reliable eye doctors so we can diagnose any eyesight errors and provide proper treatment. We may advise wearing prescription eyeglasses or contact lenses for your improved vision.

3. You Are Constantly Bothered by Eye Strain, Headaches, or Even Visual Disturbances

You may experience headaches or eye strain when you’ve outgrown your current lens prescription. This is why we emphasize the importance of visiting your trusted eye doctor regularly so we can determine whether you need to have your prescription changed.

If you happen to see any floaters, like dark spots, lines, or shadows across your visual field, visit our clinic immediately. These symptoms may indicate glaucoma or other underlying ocular diseases. Rest assured we provide superior glaucoma treatment to preserve your vision.

4. You Haven’t Had an Eye Exam for the Past Two Years

Some vision problems are considered “silent” disorders because they do not show any signs or symptoms, particularly in their early phases. Regular eye exams allow us to detect these conditions in their early stages and provide prompt treatment before the situation progresses.

If you notice any of these signs or have other visual health concerns, call us at (619) 461-4913 or fill out our contact form to make an appointment.

Q and A With the Pros: Understanding Orthokeratology

by Caroline Cauchi, OD

Eyeglasses and contact lenses are the most common corrective eyewear options, but there is another choice that is gaining popularity: orthokeratology lenses (Ortho-K). Here, your trusted eye doctor from Vision Solutions answers frequently asked questions about this treatment method.

Q: What Is Ortho-K?

Also referred to as corneal refractive or vision shaping therapy, Ortho-K is a non-surgical procedure that involves correcting irregularly shaped corneas. We will ask you to wear gas permeable Ortho-K lenses while you sleep. When you wake up, you can remove them and experience improved visual acuity without having to use your prescription eyewear.

Q: Who Is a Good Candidate for This Option?

Ortho-K is a safe, effective vision correction method for people in good health. We will perform a comprehensive eye exam to measure the extent of your refractive error and determine if you are a good candidate for this option.

Q: What Eye Conditions Can It Correct?

We primarily recommend using Ortho-K lenses if you have a mild to moderate degree of nearsightedness, as it can help slow down the progression of this refractive error. Studies also show its effectiveness in managing astigmatism, farsightedness, and similar visual acuity problems. The length of treatment differs per person, depending on the degree of error involved.

Q: What Are the Perks?

One great benefit of Ortho-K is that you can experience improved vision immediately. After wearing the lenses overnight, you will wake up to sharper eyesight in the morning. Since you won’t have to wear eyeglasses or contact lenses during the day, you can also enjoy a feeling of normalcy. You may even forget that you have a vision error at all.

Q: Does It Provide Permanent Solutions to Vision Problems?

The effects of Ortho-K are only temporary. You will only enjoy improved vision during the day if you wear the Ortho-K lenses the night before. This method gives you the freedom to undergo other sight-enhancing procedures, like LASIK.

If you have any further questions about Ortho-K, call us at (619) 461-4913 or complete our contact form.

It’s Time to Talk About Blue Light

Blue light. Do you know what it is? Do you know where it comes from, or how it can be harmful to your eyes? If you don’t know the answers to these questions, you are not alone, yet it is important that you become aware to protect your eyes for now and the years to come.

The reason blue light is suddenly becoming a big issue is because other than the sun, which is the biggest source of blue light, a significant source of blue light emission comes from digital devices and artificial lighting. As our world becomes increasingly digital – think: HD televisions, LED lights, computers, smartphones, tablets – we are all exposing our eyes to more and more amounts of blue light than ever before. And we are only beginning to understand the long term effects this has on our bodies and our eyes. 

One of the biggest issues with blue light is that whether it is through work or leisure, people are exposed to screens at a close range for a large portion of the day. A survey from the Vision Council entitled, “Blue Light Exposure and Digital Eye Strain” recently showed that 87% of respondents used digital devices for more than two hours a day and over 52% regularly used two digital devices as the same time. This shift has drastically increased exposure and the number of symptoms that are reported. To date, research has shown that there are a number of ways blue light can impact your eyes including digital eye strain, sleep disturbances and retina damage that can lead to long term problems including serious eye diseases.

Digital eye strain is a condition that is characterized by dry, sore, tired or burning eyes, eye fatigue and sensitivity to light. It can also cause blurred or double vision, headaches, back, neck and shoulder aches and difficulty focusing or concentrating. These symptoms are most common in individuals that sit in front of the computer for two or more hours a day. 

Studies show that exposure to blue light right before bedtime can cause disruptions in sleep and wakefulness because it causes a shift in the levels of melatonin, a hormone which affects your circadian rhythm and therefore your sleep patterns. So if you are using your smartphone to wind down in bed, put it down and dust off an old hardcover book!

Retina damage has been found to be a possible result of long term blue light exposure causing damage to the retinal cells in the eye which are responsible for clear vision. There has been evidence that this type of damage can lead to age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and cataracts later in life. In certain cases, your doctor might recommend Lutein and Zeaxanthin nutritional supplements to protect the macula from blue light damage. 

Despite these risks, few people are taking action to protect their eyes from blue light. A recent study from Transitions Optical, The 2017 Employee Perceptions of Vision Benefits Survey, showed that there is also a significant generational difference in knowledge, habits, and attitude regarding blue light with millennials being more aware and concerned about the health effects it has on their eyes. Millennials are more likely to request prescription eyewear that has blue light protection and to know whether their current pair has that extra coverage. However, even the millennial generation is significantly lacking in awareness and prevention. 

The best way to gain awareness of and protection against blue light is to speak to your eye doctor. There are a number of ways you can protect your eyes which include computer glasses, blue light lens filters, or even blue light filter screen protectors or apps that reverse screen colours for those that don’t use prescription eyewear. Each individual can find the best solution based on lifestyle, work environment and personal comfort. The most important takeaway is that you understand that blue light is an issue, take responsibility for your eye health and speak to your eye doctor about the best blue light solutions for you and your family. 

 

Eye Wellness Workplace Safety Tips

by Jamie Peters

Workplace Safety Blog Post

March is National Workplace Eye Wellness Month, so the Vision Solutions eye doctors in La Mesa CA wanted to shed light on potential injuries and remedies that workers may experience depending on their occupation. The risk to your eyes varies depending on your daily job responsibilities. Let’s look at a sample of different occupations to see what risks they can pose to your eyes.

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To learn more eye wellness tips, call us at (619) 461-4913 or request an appointment online to have an eye exam with one of our experienced eye doctors.

The Tale of a Torn Retina

by Caroline Cauchi, OD

Dr. Cauchi, of the trusted eye doctors in La Mesa CA recently had an eye exam with Dr. Peters, the other experienced optometrist at Vision Solutions. Dr. Peters discovered a tear in Dr. Cauchi’s retina and ended up saving her vision! Read on for the complete tale of a torn retina.

The Eye Exam Discovery

When patients come to Vision Solutions for an eye exam, we always go over the signs of a detaching retina, especially if you are at risk. A couple of weeks ago, I followed my own advice. I developed a very large bothersome floater in one of my eyes. Dr. Peters dilated my pupils and found I had a tear on my retina. After determining there was a tear in my retina,

My Experience with Laser Eye Surgery

I went to see my favorite retinal specialist for laser surgery. Fortunately, the recovery is quick and I was back seeing patients the following day after the surgery! I am now doing well and my vision was unaffected because the tear was in the very extreme side of my retina. Had Dr. Peters not found the tear it would have lead to a detached retina and some very unpleasant consequences…she saved me!

How to Prevent Problems with your Retina

The signs of a possible detached retina are flashes of light, increased floaters, a veil or curtain or shadow in your vision. If this happens to you, we recommend you wait 1 hour to see if it goes away. If it doesn’t go away, then you need to have an eye exam within 48 hours.

What causes holes and tears on the retina? Highly near sighted people are at risk due to retinal thinning. A blow to the head may jar the retina and knock it loose. Additionally, sometimes they can just occur, which is what happened to me. Even though the thought of laser eye surgery sounds horrible, it really wasn’t that bad because the recovery process is very fast and I had a great surgeon. If you have any questions or want to learn more about my experience, give us a call at (619) 461-4913.