Every year thousands of people suffer with dry eyes – did you know that eye dryness can be a symptom of your lifestyle? Today we’re going to have a look at a few leading causes of dry eyes and how to avoid them.
One of the main causes of eye dryness may simply be related to where you are living, working, partaking in activities. Because dust, dirt or airborne allergens can cause your eyes to be red, itchy, swollen and dry. This is especially true for allergy sufferer since often times it’s the unseen contaminants that affect your eyes causing them to water excessively and in result drying out your eyes. Another common environmental factor is the climate you’re living in if it’s an arid climate with low humidity you may find yourself dealing with dry eyes more frequently. Even if you live in a humid environment you may still find yourself dealing with dry eyes on windy days.
Another common factor that can lead to dry eyes may be lurking in your medicine cabinet. Did you know that it’s not an uncommon side effect of many over the counter as well as prescription medications to include eye dryness? If you’re regularly taking prescription or over the counter medications and suffering from dryness of eyes take a closer look at your medicine cabinet or talk to your doctor.
In our day and age we’re surrounded by electronic screens, from our computers at work, in line at the grocery store, at home in front of our television to even while enjoying a book on our e-readers. We’ve already written about how too much screen time can have an affect on your eyes, including causing your eyes to become dry. If you’re certain screen time is causing your eyes to dry out don’t worry since that can usually be solved by taking breaks away from a screen.
We know that there are supplements and food we can eat to help promote healthy eyes and we know practical ways to protect our eyes from the sun. Amongst all the information we’ve learned have you ever found yourself wonder what’s the difference between UVA and UVB rays? In today’s post we’re going to explore this question and leave you with some insightful information.
UVA – Long Term Effects
Dark spots, damaged skin, wrinkles? These are the long term effects caused by UVA rays – unfortunately UVA rays are present year round no matter the season or weather. Over your lifetime you are exposed to countless hours of UVA rays – penetrating deep into your skin it is responsible for common signs of aging.
UVB – On the Surface
If you’ve been sunburned you’ve felt the effect of UVB rays. Unlike UVA rays UVB rays increases in strength over the summer months and decreases during winter. While it’s only at its strongest for a few short months, you should beware the UVB rays. The effects can be seen on the surface of your skin by resulting in sunburn, however just under the surface it can cause cell damage.
Take Proper Precautions
We hope this post has been insightful to you and we wanted to leave you with a couple tips on how to take proper precautions against UVA and UVB rays. We recommend protecting your eyes all year long by wearing sunglasses. It’s important to make sure your sunglasses offer UVA (in addition to UVB) protection since exposure can cause long term damage to your eyes. During the summer months we recommend staying indoors or properly protected from the sun between 10:00 am and 2:00 pm since this is when UVB rays are the strongest and pose the greatest threat to your eyes.
It doesn’t matter if you’re a man or woman, young or old, there’s one essential accessory you should never leave home without. That is your sunglasses! Not only do your sunglasses provide your eyes with protection from the elements – including damage from harmful ultraviolet(UV) rays – did you know your sunglasses can be a fashion statement? Today we’re going to share a few tips with you to help you choose sunglasses that not only offer protection but will compliment your own personal style.
It’s All about Coverage
When choosing a pair of sunglasses, one very important factor to take into consideration is the level of UV protection. You should look for lenses that block 99 to 100 percent of UV rays. Anything less will not provide you with adequate protection. Another important thing to consider is how much coverage the frames will provide. You want to find a pair of frames that will block as much unfiltered light from your eyes. Especially if you plan to use your sunglasses while you drive you want to make sure they don’t allow light to pour in the sides unfiltered.
Embrace Your Style
If you prefer a classic and casual look, new or edgy, or even retro you’re in luck. In our day and age there are countless varieties of shapes, styles and colors available for sunglasses. Whether you plan on buying sunglasses over the counter or if you need to order prescription lenses we recommend evaluating your personal style. Make note of colors or styles you tend to lean toward and start shopping.
How to Choose Sunglasses: Take Recommendations
While your opinion and choice of style is the most important it couldn’t hurt to bring a friend or family member along to help you decide between styles. Don’t be afraid to branch out and try something new – sometimes all it takes is a nudge out of our style comfort zones to find our new favorite fashion statement!
As a parent you want the best for your child and it’s understandable to want them to achieve in life to the best of their abilities. Whether it’s through academics, athletics and sports, and even on a social level you want them to succeed. Often times when a child is struggling to keep up with their peers it’s easy to address a variety of potential roadblocks. Did you know that oftentimes when a child is struggling academically, athletically or even socially the cause may not be what you think.
According to Dr. Gary Heiting in his article Vision Problems of School Age Children, 1 in 4 school age children have vision problems, that if left untreated can affect the child’s academic ability. Below we’ve put together a few tips for Childhood Eye Care.
1. Regular Eye Exams
It is strongly encouraged for children to regularly see a doctor and in some cases specifically an eye doctor. Especially if there is a family history of vision problems or eye diseases. In that case you’ll want to see an Ophthalmologist or an Optometrist. Ophthalmologist is a medical doctor that provides eye exams, general eye care and can diagnose and treat eye diseases as well as perform eye surgery. An Optometrist is a healthcare professional who does not treat complex vision problems or perform surgery, however they do provide eye exams, diagnose common vision disorders, treat a specific range of eye diseases and prescribe corrective lenses.
2. Open Communication
While sometimes children are able to specifically bring attention to a potential vision problem it’s not uncommon for them to live with symptoms and not know it’s a problem, especially if the problem has existed for most of their childhood. Because of this it’s important to keep open communication both with your child and their teachers, tutors or coaches. Usually the adults in your child’s life will know if your child squints or shows difficulty reading up close or across the room. Headaches or complaints that their “eye’s hurt” after a prolonged activity might be a sign to have a doctor take a closer look.
3. Watch for Eye Fatigue
Sometimes symptoms that might look like a potential vision problem in a child can be simply be a case of “Eye Fatigue”. For more information on Eye Fatigue and how to treat it check out our previous post, How Screen Time Affects Your Eyes. [http://pingueculaeye.staging.wpengine.com/screen-time-affects-eyes/]
As a parent you are your child’s best advocate, if you think something may be wrong don’t hesitate to contact your healthcare provider. In some cases just a little care is what your child needs to succeed.
In our day and age we are surrounded by screens. Between our smartphones, electronic readers, computer screens at work and our home televisions the average American devotes up to 10 hours a day looking at screens according to a report by CNN. With all of this time spent looking at screens the questions has been raised, “How does Screen Time affect your eyes?” Today we’re going to have a look at what you may expect from prolonged screen time.
One of the most widespread issues with prolonged screen time is eye fatigue or eye strain. This simply means that your eye is tired from extended periods of focusing without blinking to help keep the eye properly moisturized. This can also result in eye redness as well as temporarily blurred vision. While eye fatigue or strain may be uncomfortable it is typically superficial and can be remedied by taking a break from whatever task has you looking at a screen. If you’re at school or work try taking a break by stretching or taking a trip to the water cooler if you have the opportunity.
Computer Vision Syndrome
Another possible risk with prolonged screen time is what has been called Computer Vision Syndrome. This is prevalent in not only adults but in children as well. This can lead to myopia which is a refractive error in which a person can see near objects clearly but objects in the distance are blurred – this is also called nearsightedness. If you are concerned about Computer Vision Syndrome in either yourself or a loved one especially school aged children consider breaking up screen time with alternative activities.
Protect Your Eyes During Screen Time, and Get Regular Checkups
While it’s important to limit screen time, especially when you notice an effect on your eyesight, we encourage you to have regular eye examinations. Consistent eye care will help you monitor your eye health and help you make informed decisions regarding the amount of screen time that is right for you!
When the skies are clear and the sun is shining it’s easy to remember to take precautions for your health. Especially over the summer when we’re out enjoying the sunshine the most. Between sunscreen, hats and layers of clothing that provide UV protection your sunglasses may seem like an easy accessory to remember to wear. What about spring? Do you need to bring along eye protection even while the days are cold and gray? Did you know that you should be wearing eye protection even in the spring when most people wouldn’t expect you should? Learn more about protecting your eyes on sunny days here. Read on to learn more about why you need to protect your eyes – even when it’s gray.
Gray Skies – An Unexpected Risk
In the cool gray days of spring it’s easy forget the habits that keep our skin and eyes safe and healthy during the summer months. It’s a common thought that overcast skies mean you don’t need to worry about bringing along your sunglasses. That eye protection is only useful during bright summer months. Unfortunately most people believe that the harmful UV rays that can cause eye damage are blocked or are filtered out by the cloud cover. This is a harmful misconception since gray skies don’t act as a barrier or filter for the sun’s powerful UV rays. In fact if you are at the beach or by water or even surrounded by fresh snow you are exposed to a potentially damaging amount of UV rays to your eyes as well as your skin.
Play It Safe and Protect Your Eyes – Even When It’s Gray
As April Showers cloud the sky preparing to bring on the May Flowers and you find yourself surrounded by sunshine or gray skies take the proper precautions and bring along your sunglasses. Especially if you plan on being by water or gliding over snow during spring break keep your eye protection handy. It is just as important to protect your eyes in the spring as it is during summer – don’t fall victim to gray skies the unexpected risk.
We all know that our bodies change after we hit 60: Our eyes are not immune to the aging process. Most of us look into protecting our bodies as we age, but, many do not pause and think about specific ways to protect their eye health. Here are a few tips and insights into how to keep your eyes healthy once you are past 60.
Get Plenty of Sleep
One of the best ways you can protect your eye health as you age (and even when you’re young), is to get enough sleep. Our eyes get lubricated, and cleared of any dust, allergens, smoke, or other irritants. To get the best rest, some research has shown that your eyes need exposure to some natural light during the day, as it affects our wake-sleep cycles.
Get Plenty of Exercise
Exercise is good for our bodies, but it is also specifically beneficial to our eyes. Exercise stimulates good blood circulation, which is important for our eye health. Additionally, exercise keeps our weight regulated, which fights off diseases such as diabetes – and, diabetic retinopathy.
Eye Injuries from Falling
One of the most common ways people injure their eyes is in or around the home, and many are the result of home improvement projects. While this may be worrisome, when you realize that most eye injuries could be prevented by wearing protective eye wear during projects and maintenance, those numbers are less worrisome. Be careful about your potential to fall – make sure railings are secure, rugs are tacked down, and there are no sharp edged protruding from tables or the corners of walls.
Stay Current with Your Eye Doctor for the Best Eye Health
Finally, our last tip for the day: Be sure to stay current with your eye doctor. The sooner you catch many eye diseases, the better. Be sure to go in for a yearly eye exam, and if you notice anything strange with your vision, be sure to make an additional appointment.
We’ve all experienced it: Eyes that just ache after a long day at work, pain after reading a book, and an overall heaviness you just can’t get rid of. In our quest to find remedies for aching eyes, we came across quite a few helpful tips.
Ice cubes can cool your eyes, and improve blood circulation. They also help relax the muscles around your eyes. Simply put some ice cubes in a clean town, and compress it lightly on your tired eyes to get some relief from the achiness.
If you’re adverse to using ice-cubes, try putting some potato slices in the refrigerator. Place them over your eyes to reduce inflammation. You’ll also get the added benefit of a little shuteye!
Some pain requires heat for relief. Putting a warm compress on your eyes can provide relief from the achiness by relaxing the muscles around your eyes, soothing dry eyes, and reducing strain. Place a warm towel on your eyelids – refresh it every time it cools.
Sometimes, your aching eyes might be the result of not getting enough sleep. Try drinking some chamomile tea with honey before bed to melt stress away and calm your body before you go to sleep. Getting a good night’s rest will go a long way to relieving your aching eyes!
Use Tea Bags
Tea can be ingested, but it can also be used directly on your eyes. Tea contains bioflavonoids, which fight infections and bacteria. They can also be used warm to soothe your eyes. Use green or black tea for the most benefit.
Use a Chilled Spoon
If you don’t have ice cubes or potatoes handy, put a few spoons in chilled water. Place them over your eyes, and switch them out as they grow warm. This can be a great way to get relief when you’re at work and don’t want to ruin your makeup, but need relief.
There are many things to consider when you have vision problems. One of the decisions you must make is decide whether contacts or glasses are right for you. The debate of contacts vs glasses comes down to personal preference, and the eye problems you have. Here is a closer look at how to choose the best option for you.
Personal Preference that Impact Contacts vs Glasses
There are many different factors that play into whether or not you choose contacts or glasses. These include (but aren’t limited to):
Take a minute to consider: Are your eyes usually quite dry? Glasses might be a better option, because contacts can dry out your eyes. Do you play a lot of sports? Contacts might be the better option, as you don’t have to worry about your frames breaking or falling off during your activity. Keep in mind that one isn’t better than the other when it comes to contacts vs glasses. Write a list to determine the best option for you. Here are a few pros and cons of each that we have considered:
Pros of Glasses:
- Can be a fashion statement.
- Easy to clean.
- You don’t have to touch your eyes!
- Generally cheaper than contacts.
- Can protect your eyes from foreign objects.
Cons of Glasses:
- Can make it difficult to play sports.
- Can be broken easily.
- Sight can be obstructed by elements – fogging up glasses, etc.
- Can distort peripheral vision.
- Thickness can change the appearance of your eyes.
Pros of Contacts:
- Easy – put them in in the morning, and take out at night.
- Great for sports and outdoor activities.
- Aren’t affected by environment.
- Less vision distortion.
- You can try out different eye colors!
Cons of Contacts:
- Can exacerbate eye dryness and irritation.
- You have to touch your eyes.
- Require additional cleaning and care.
- Can exacerbate computer vision problems.
- Cost to replace can be higher.
As you can see, there are many pros and cons to both glasses and contacts. Again, it really does come down to personal preference. If you have questions about the right option for you, speak with your eye doctor!
It’s something we all do: Rubbing your eyes after a long day staring at a screen, or when you wake up in the morning is only natural. But, it is also unhealthy. Today, we answer a common eye health question: Is it bad to rub your eyes?
Don’t Rub Your Eyes
When our eyes are fatigued, our first instinct is to rub them to get relief. This is because it actually does help – it causes our eyes to produce tears, and it stimulates the vagus nerve, which relieves stress by slowing down your heart rate. Rubbing your eyes might seem like a harmless way to let them rest, but it’s actually doing much more harm than good. Here are a few reasons why:
- It Can Cause Dark Circles: The skin around our eyes is delicate, and as we get older, it is the first to show signs of aging. When you rub your eyes, it can cause tiny blood vessels in your skin to break, which can cause puffiness, dark circles, and even crow’s feet!
- It Can Cause Pressure: Even rubbing your eyes slightly can double the pressure in your eyes. While increasing pressure isn’t necessarily bad, if you have certain eye conditions, it could be harmful to your vision.
- It Can Increase Itching: Often, the reason you rub your eye is to soothe itching. Ironically, rubbing your eyes actually increases the production of histamines, making the itching worse!
- It Can Cause Infection: Our hands aren’t especially clean. We use them all day long to clean, open doors, and touch other bacteria-filled surfaces. When you touch your eyes, you are transferring bacteria to your eye, which can result in infection.
Is It Bad to Rub Your Eyes? Yes – Keep Healthy with Other Options
It is bad to rub your eyes – thankfully there are other options. If your eyes are itchy or dry, try using a cooling eye drop to provider relief. If they are tired, spend a few moments with them closed, or look at a point at a distance from your computer regularly to get relief and soothe tension.