Skip to main content
Map
Menu
Home »

Month: March 2018

Ultraviolet Light and your Eyes

If you want strong, healthy eyes and clear vision for life, a major step you can take is to protect your eyes from UV radiation.  Wearing proper eye protection from the sun reduces the risk of a number of eye diseases and other conditions that are caused or worsened by UV exposure.  

Eye Diseases Linked to UV Exposure

UV exposure has been linked to a number of serious eye diseases including macular degeneration and cataracts. 

Macular Degeneration

Macular degeneration is a condition in which the macula of the eye breaks down, leading to a loss of central vision and is a leading cause of age-related vision loss.  Macular degeneration develops over time so a lifetime of exposure to UV can contribute it’s likelihood.  

Cataracts

Cataracts occur when the natural lens of the eye becomes clouded, resulting in blurred vision and eventually blindness. The len is responsible for focusing the light that comes into the eye, allowing clear vision. Cataracts can be treated by a simple surgery to replace the clouded lens with an artificial lens.  UV light contributes to certain types of cataracts, which account for about 10% of all cases. 

Skin Cancer

Another serious disease that can affect the eyes is skin cancer which can appear on the eyelids or the area around the eyes.  Skin cancer is known to be linked to extended exposure to UV and your eyes can be a difficult area to protect with sun block as you don’t want it to get too close to the eyes. 

Other Eye Conditions Linked to UV Exposure

Photokeratitis or Corneal Sunburn

Photokeratitis or a corneal sunburn in layman’s terms can occur with intense exposure to the sun without proper eye protection. It is commonly experienced after a day skiing or snowboarding at a high altitude or at the beach. Corneal sunburns can be extremely painful and can sometimes cause a temporary loss of vision. 

Pterygium 

Pterygium, also known as “surfer’s eye” is a growth that forms on the conjunctiva which is a layer over the sclera or the white part of your eye. Sometimes they grow onto the cornea as well. Often pterygia are harmless but if they grow too large they may begin to impact your vision. In this case, surgery may be necessary. Pterygia are commonly found in individuals who spend a significant amount of time outside in the sun or wind. 

How to Properly Protect Your Eyes From UV

The more time you spend outside, the greater the risk for your eyes, however you can easily minimize this risk with proper protection. Here are a few tips to ensure you are doing what you can to safeguard your eyes:

Proper Sunglasses

Fully protective sunglasses should block out 99-100% of UV-A and UV-B rays. You can achieve this through purchasing a pair of sunglasses, applying a UV blocking coating to your glasses or opting for photochromic lenses which are eyeglass lenses which turn dark when exposed to sunlight. Most contact lenses will also have UV protection but this is just for the area of the eye covered by the lens. 

Since UV exposure can enter from the air, the ground or from the sides, wrap-around and large lensed frames can provide added protection.

Add a Wide Brimmed Hat

A wide brimmed hat or visor will stop about half of the UV rays from even reaching your eyes as well as reduce the exposure coming in from the top or sides of your sunglass frames. 

Know Your Environmental Risk Factors

UV exposure is largely dependent upon your location and your surroundings. If you are located at a high altitude you will likely be exposed to more UV than at lower altitudes.  UV also reflects off of snow, sand, water and even asphalt so be aware that you are getting increased exposure under these conditions.   

Know Your Additional Risk Factors

There are a number of other factors that can increase your exposure or risk of eye damage from UV.  For example, certain medications increase the sensitivity of your eyes and skin to sunlight (speak to your doctor about any medications you are on). Previous eye surgery or eye diseases can also increase your risk factors for UV eye damage. Additionally if you work in certain fields such as welding or medical scans or radiation or use tanning beds, you can be exposed to additional UV radiation. If there is nothing you can do to change your exposure, make sure you are properly protecting your eyes with goggles or glasses and a hat. 

Regular Eye Exams

Make sure you schedule a comprehensive eye exam on a regular basis to ensure your eyes are healthy.  If you are over 50 or have increased risk factors for eye disease, you should schedule exams at least on a yearly basis or according to your eye doctor’s recommendations. 

 

Experience Advanced Lens Technology With Serengeti®

Vision Solutions offers high-quality eyewear from some of the most elite brands in the industry, including Serengeti®. Today, your eye doctor explains what makes their collections stand out.

Experience Advanced Lens Technology With Serengeti

 

Interesting History

In 1908, Corning Incorporated established one of the first optical laboratories in the U.S. Focusing on applied optics, they developed their photochromic technology 31 years later. Their continued research resulted in creating Serengeti sunglasses, which provide excellent UV protection, superior contrast and reduced glare. Fortune magazine even recognized the brand’s selections as one of the top 100 products in America.

Innovative Lens Technology

Serengeti pioneered photochromic technology. Their lenses can adapt to changing light conditions, allowing you to enjoy good vision no matter the circumstances outside. The brand’s Spectral Control® technology works similarly to an audio equalizer, filtering wavelengths so you can see images of better saturation. Another reason to try Serengeti is that their National Sun RX Program offers the same advanced lens technologies for your eyeglasses.

Serengeti selections are also equipped with premier polarization technology, which lets parallel light rays pass through while blocking perpendicular light, reducing glare. The brand’s Drivers® collection come standard with amber-colored lenses, engineered to highlight green, red and yellow colors to ensure safe and comfortable driving. For optimum protection from UV rays, you may want to try the POLAR PhD™ 2.0 Trivex® lenses too.

Serengeti uses high-quality frame materials that ensure long-lasting performance. They are available in titanium, acetate, stainless steel and injected nylon.

To find out which Serengeti lens and frame combination works best for you, visit our clinic and have an eye exam today. Call us at (619) 461-4913 or complete our form to request an appointment. We serve La Mesa, CA, and nearby areas.

What You Need to Know About Strabismus

by Caroline Cauchi, OD

Your vision is a result of complex coordination between your eyes and brain. If they fail to coordinate properly, however, you may experience vision problems, such as strabismus. Read on as Vision Solutions, your trusted provider of glaucoma treatment and other eye care services, sheds light on this condition.

dc7675364c6b754fc16327d9886f620d442d872c What You Need to Know About Strabismus

What Causes Strabismus

Strabismus occurs when your eyes and brain aren’t coordinating properly, leading to faulty eye-muscle control. This may cause misalignment of your eyes, which is why this vision disorder is commonly referred to as crossed eyes. One or both of your eyes may turn outward (exotropia), inward (esotropia), downward (hypotropia) or upward (hypertropia).

How Strabismus Affects Your Vision

Your eye care specialist explains that the hallmark symptom of strabismus is having one eye that doesn’t focus properly. This may cause your brain to register two varying images, leading to confusion. As a workaround, your brain may ignore signals coming from the misaligned eye, putting you at risk of developing another vision problem known as amblyopia or “lazy eye.” You may experience frequent headaches, eye strain, head tilting and other compensatory mannerisms too.

How Strabismus Is Managed

We will perform a comprehensive eye exam to confirm strabismus. This may include a cover and uncover test to evaluate your eyes’ alignment. We may also perform a neurological assessment to check the working relationship between your eyes and brain.

We may prescribe eyeglasses or contact lenses to help realign your eyes. If corrective eyewear is inadequate in improving your eyesight, we may include vision therapy in your treatment. This involves wearing an eye patch on the stronger eye for a period of time, which trains your brain to acknowledge image signals sent by the weaker eye, helping preserve your vision.

For more information about strabismus, call us at (619) 461-4913 or complete our form. We serve La Mesa, CA, and nearby areas.

Experience Advanced Lens Technology With Serengeti®

by Caroline Cauchi, OD

Vision Solutions offers high-quality eyewear from some of the most elite brands in the industry, including Serengeti®. Today, your eye doctor explains what makes their collections stand out.

48947f27fa9366110e08cceebe21425a7a1c12f0 Experience Advanced Lens Technology With Serengeti

Interesting History

In 1908, Corning Incorporated established one of the first optical laboratories in the U.S. Focusing on applied optics, they developed their photochromic technology 31 years later. Their continued research resulted in creating Serengeti sunglasses, which provide excellent UV protection, superior contrast and reduced glare. Fortune magazine even recognized the brand’s selections as one of the top 100 products in America.

Innovative Lens Technology

Serengeti pioneered photochromic technology. Their lenses can adapt to changing light conditions, allowing you to enjoy good vision no matter the circumstances outside. The brand’s Spectral Control® technology works similarly to an audio equalizer, filtering wavelengths so you can see images of better saturation. Another reason to try Serengeti is that their National Sun RX Program offers the same advanced lens technologies for your eyeglasses.

Serengeti selections are also equipped with premier polarization technology, which lets parallel light rays pass through while blocking perpendicular light, reducing glare. The brand’s Drivers® collection come standard with amber-colored lenses, engineered to highlight green, red and yellow colors to ensure safe and comfortable driving. For optimum protection from UV rays, you may want to try the POLAR PhD™ 2.0 Trivex® lenses too.

Serengeti uses high-quality frame materials that ensure long-lasting performance. They are available in titanium, acetate, stainless steel and injected nylon.

To find out which Serengeti lens and frame combination works best for you, visit our clinic and have an eye exam today. Call us at (619) 461-4913 or complete our form to request an appointment. We serve La Mesa, CA, and nearby areas.

What You Need to Know About Strabismus

Your vision is a result of complex coordination between your eyes and brain. If they fail to coordinate properly, however, you may experience vision problems, such as strabismus. Read on as Vision Solutions, your trusted provider of glaucoma treatment and other eye care services, sheds light on this condition.

What You Need to Know About Strabismus

What Causes Strabismus

Strabismus occurs when your eyes and brain aren’t coordinating properly, leading to faulty eye-muscle control. This may cause misalignment of your eyes, which is why this vision disorder is commonly referred to as crossed eyes. One or both of your eyes may turn outward (exotropia), inward (esotropia), downward (hypotropia) or upward (hypertropia).

How Strabismus Affects Your Vision

Your eye care specialist explains that the hallmark symptom of strabismus is having one eye that doesn’t focus properly. This may cause your brain to register two varying images, leading to confusion. As a workaround, your brain may ignore signals coming from the misaligned eye, putting you at risk of developing another vision problem known as amblyopia or “lazy eye.” You may experience frequent headaches, eye strain, head tilting and other compensatory mannerisms too.

How Strabismus Is Managed

We will perform a comprehensive eye exam to confirm strabismus. This may include a cover and uncover test to evaluate your eyes’ alignment. We may also perform a neurological assessment to check the working relationship between your eyes and brain.

We may prescribe eyeglasses or contact lenses to help realign your eyes. If corrective eyewear is inadequate in improving your eyesight, we may include vision therapy in your treatment. This involves wearing an eye patch on the stronger eye for a period of time, which trains your brain to acknowledge image signals sent by the weaker eye, helping preserve your vision.

For more information about strabismus, call us at (619) 461-4913 or complete our form. We serve La Mesa, CA, and nearby areas.

Should I Be Concerned When My Eyelid Twitches?

We all experience the occasional eyelid twitch, which is when the muscle of the eyelid spasms involuntarily. Usually, it comes and goes without intervention and while sure, it can be irritating, is a twitching eyelid ever something to be concerned about?

An eyelid twitch, also known as a myokymia, can affect the upper or lower lid and usually lasts for at least a few seconds and then may continue off and on for a few minutes. Usually unpredictable, twitching episodes can last several days and sometimes they may go away and then return weeks or months later. 

Causes of Eyelid Twitching

Although they may be bothersome, most eyelid twitches are nothing to cause concern and usually resolve on their own. However, in some rare cases, they may be a sign of a more serious problem, especially if they are accompanied by other symptoms – we will discuss this further below. 

Some known causes of eyelid twitches include:

 

  • Fatigue or lack of sleep
  • Stress
  • Eye irritation or dry eyes
  • Medications
  • Alcohol or caffeine
  • Physical exertion
  • Allergies
  • Eye strain (such as with extended digital device use)
  • Poor nutrition

 

Preventing and Treating Eyelid Twitching

Usually eyelid twitching will resolve itself within a couple of days or weeks but if it persists try to determine the cause in order to speed up the process. Consider going to bed a little earlier, cutting out caffeine or alcohol or finding ways to reduce or manage your stress. You can also try lubricating eye drops to add moisture to your eyes. If you take notice of when the spasms are happening and what else is going on in your life at that time (time of day, food intake, stress level, exhaustion) you can make some changes that will stop or prevent eye twitching from occuring. 

If you notice eye twitching in addition to vision disturbances or eye strain, contact your doctor for a vision assessment as it could be a sign of a refractive change. 

When is Eyelid Twitching a Concern?

If the eyelid spasms don’t pass and become chronic it may be a sign that you have a condition called benign essential blepharospasm. This condition is when the eye muscles blink uncontrollably and it usually affects both eyes. While the cause of blepharospasm is not known, it is more common in middle age women and there are a number of conditions that can exacerbate symptoms including: 

  • Eye inflammation (blepharitis) or infection (pink eye)
  • Dry eyes
  • Fatigue
  • Stress
  • Alcohol, caffeine or tobacco
  • Irritants or allergens in the environment

Blepharospasm is usually a progressive condition that can eventually lead to spasms in other muscles in the face, blurred vision and light sensitivity. The condition is sometimes treated with medication or Botox (botulinum toxin) to temporarily reduce the spasms and in severe cases, surgery may be performed to remove some of the muscles that are affected. 

On very rare occasions eye twitching can be a symptom of a more serious disorder affecting the brain or nervous system, however, usually it will be accompanied by other symptoms. Examples of such conditions include: glaucoma, hemifacial spasms, Parkinson’s disease, Bell’s palsy, multiple sclerosis, dystonia, and Tourette’s. A corneal scratch or abrasion can also be a cause of the eyelid muscle spasm. 

If you experience any of the following symptoms along with your eye twitching, see your doctor as soon as possible: 

  • Twitching that continues for more than a few weeks
  • Twitching that spreads to other areas of the face
  • A drooping upper eyelid
  • Red, irritated or swollen eyes 
  • Discharge coming from the eye
  • Spasms that cause the eyelid to close completely or difficulty opening the eyelid. 

In most cases, eye twitching is not something to worry about, but when you do experience a spasm it is worthwhile to take note of the circumstances so you know when your body is trying to tell you that something is out of balance.