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What Eye Drops Are Best For My Eyes?

Are you suffering from red, irritated and scratchy eyes? Do you feel like you have something stuck in your eyes? These are hallmark symptoms of dry eye syndrome, a condition that occurs when your eyes are not properly lubricated due to insufficient tear production, blocked glands, or unbalanced tear composition.

The symptoms can be so unpleasant that many rush to the nearest pharmacy to find the perfect eye drops that will offer them the relief they need so that they can get back to focusing on other things.

However, seeking the ideal artificial tears to relieve dry eyes can be a daunting process. The eye drops shelf at the drug store offers so many options that it’s hard to know which ones are right for you. What’s more, some can actually make your symptoms worse.

Not all eye drops are created equal—currently, there are 6 main categories of artificial tears available over the counter. Choosing the artificial tears based on your specific needs can help narrow your options.

The 6 Types of Eye Drops / Artificial Tears

Preserved Artificial Tears

Preserved artificial tears contain added preservatives to maintain a very long shelf and keep bacteria at bay once the bottle is opened. Unfortunately, it also causes inflammatory dry eye disease, meibomian gland dysfunction and an allergic reaction in those who are sensitive, leading to redness, irritation and inflammation. While these drops may offer temporary relief, long term they can do more harm than good. Moreover, the preservatives may leave residue on contact lenses.

Preservative-Free Artificial Tears

Preservative-free artificial tears are great for contact lens wearers as they don’t cause any preservative build-up on the lenses. They are also suitable for those with sensitive eyes since they contain fewer ingredients that can cause irritation.

Preservative-free eye drops typically come in a box of 28 to 30 small vials that fit in a pocket or purse.

To use these drops, just pop the top off and insert the drops into your eyes. Some of these vials can be re-capped to allow you to continue to use the vial for up to 24 hours, but not longer. Refrigerate opened vials between uses to prevent any bacterial growth.

Oil-Based Artificial Tears

Oil-based tears come in preserved and preservative-free versions. These are thicker than traditional eye drops, as they contain an oil-based formulation. The oil helps prevent the watery portion of the tears from evaporating too quickly.

If you suffer from moderate or severe dry eye, oil-based artificial tears may be a great option. However, they’re not recommended for contact lens wearers, as the oils may stick to the surface of the lenses, making it difficult to keep them clean.

Eye Drop Spray or Mist

These sprays are preservative-free and are used to relieve dryness and irritation in both the eyes and eyelids. They’re easy to use, especially for those who struggle to insert drops into their eyes.

To use the spray, just close your eyes and spray onto your closed eyelids. Once you blink, the tears will slide into your eyes.

Don’t use the spray if you’re wearing makeup, lotions, or creams on your eyelids, as it can cause the makeup or lotion to enter your eye.

Artificial Tear Gel

Artificial tear gel adds a thick coating of tears and can be used at any time of the day or night. However, the thicker consistency of the gel drop may blur your vision for several minutes.

The gel is applied in the same way as eye drops. It effectively soothes the eyes and provides extended relief for both moderate to severe dry eye.

Most artificial tear gels contain preservatives, so they can only be used up to 4 times a day, and usually they are not safe for contact lens wearers.

Artificial Tear Ointment

Dry eye ointments are thick and coat the front of your eye. They’re usually used 1 to 2 times daily as needed. It may be best to use them at bedtime, as it will blur your vision.

Get Dry Eye Relief Today!

Artificial tears may be a good way to temporarily relieve eye dryness. However, using the wrong type of eye drops can be worse than not using any drops at all. So be sure to consult your eye doctor before you get eye drops.

Keep in mind that eye drops don’t address the root cause of dry eyes; they just provide temporary respite from the uncomfortable dry eye symptoms. Only an eye doctor can examine your eyes to determine the underlying cause of your symptoms and recommend the best treatment for your unique case of dry eye.

Schedule an appointment with EYEcenter Optometric in Citrus Heights to learn more about dry eye syndrome and to find out which treatment is best for you.

Q&A

Frequently Asked Questions with Dr. Randy Fuerst

Q: What is dry eye syndrome?

    • A: Dry eye syndrome is a condition where your eyes either produce low-quality tears or don’t produce enough tears to keep your eyes hydrated. This may be due to certain diseases (like diabetes or other autoimmune diseases), aging, allergies, hormonal changes, smoking, poor air quality, medications and the environment.

    Q: What are the symptoms of dry eye syndrome?

          • A: Dry eye syndrome is a condition where your eyes either produce low-quality tears or don’t produce enough tears to keep your eyes hydrated. This may be due to certain diseases (like diabetes or other autoimmune diseases), aging, allergies, hormonal changes, smoking, poor air quality, medications and the environment.

      Q: Artificial Tears

                • A: Artificial tears are drops used to lubricate dry eyes. These drops help maintain moisture on the surface of your eyes. Artificial tears are available without a prescription from your optometrist. There is no one brand works best for every form of dry eyes. Aside lubricating the surface of your eyes, artificial tears can also promote healing of the eyes. Additionally, some types of drops work to decrease the evaporation of tears from the surface of your eyes. Artificial tears may also contain thickening agents, which keep the solution on the surface of your eyes longer.

      Quality Frames For Prescription Eyeglasses & Computer Glasses In Folsom, California. Visit EYEcenter optometric for an eye exam and eyeglasses that match your style.

      With Kids’ Screen Time at an All-time High, Parents Need to Have an Eye Out for Myopia

      boy doing his homework

      The pandemic has changed the way we look at working and learning by forcing us to do more of both from home. However, our increased reliance on screens and digital devices for remote work and virtual school might also be altering our actual vision and worsening a worldwide trend that was already reaching its own epidemic proportions.

      Over the past 50 years, the number of Americans who are nearsighted has almost doubled to 41.6 percent. The trend is particularly acute among our youth. According to a 2018 study of Southern California children, nearly 60 percent of kids aged 17 to 19 were myopic, along with half of 11- to 13-year-olds. And that was before COVID-19. Doctors were already attributing the rise in nearsightedness to decreased time outdoors and more hours spent inside glued to personal electronic devices. Now, after more than a year of pandemic lockdowns, during which kids have been forced to also get their education through a screen, U.S. children might be facing an unprecedented challenge when it comes to myopia.

      In fact, according to a recent study in JAMA Ophthamology, “the prevalence of near-sightedness, or myopia, increased 1.4 to 3 times in children aged 6 to 8 years during COVID-19 quarantine.”

      “Kids’ eyes have to work harder doing school on a computer,” says Randall Fuerst, O.D., F.A.A.O., optometrist at EYEcenter Optometric, which serves the Sacramento Valley and Sierra Nevada foothills. “Some kids might rub their eyes and make a connection to the problem being with their vision. But a lot of times, the eyes just simply don’t want to work—they’re tired,” he says.

      “If nothing else, it’s the overall intensity and the fatigue that’s being put on the eyes, which are staring at the screen for six or eight hours a day,” says John Coen, O.D.

      1kcraThe worry is more than just an oncoming generation of adults forced to wear eyeglasses and contact lenses. With myopia, the eyeball stretches and changes shape. People who experience severe myopia, also known as high myopia, face an increased risk of long-term eye problems, such as cataracts, retinal detachment, and glaucoma.

      The earlier myopia sets in, the sooner in life those issues are likely to occur and the worse they are likely to get. Also, adults who have trouble with their vision are generally less productive and may lead less fulfilling lives. That’s why, doctors say, it’s imperative for parents to test and monitor a child’s eyesight early on.

      “A spectrum of eye diseases can affect children in various age groups,” says Priscilla Chang, O.D., of EYEcenter Optometric. “The recommended timeline for pediatric eye exams starts at newborn. The goal of an eye exam is to identify and prevent vision impairment at the earliest age possible. And vision screenings at the primary care clinic and at school do not replace a comprehensive eye exam.”

      In addition to scheduling regular eye exams for children, parents should also remain vigilant about their kids’ eyesight. This can be difficult because youths aren’t always aware that they’re having difficulties—they don’t know how they are normally supposed to see. With distanced learning, it’s even harder to pick up on drastic changes in vision because, while some children have no problem seeing and reading the computer right in front of them, they might not be able to make out letters, shapes, and words that are further away, an issue that would normally be more apparent in a traditional classroom setting.

      kcra1“If a child has one dominant eye and one lazy eye, they may not know this is abnormal,” says Hannah Mikes, O.D. of EYEcenter Optometric. “If a child develops myopia, they can see up close. Much of the time, they can complete schoolwork. They might even find it normal to need to squint to see far away.”

      Modern optometrists can do much more than diagnose myopia and prescribe corrective lenses. There are many new technologies doctors can use in the battle against nearsightedness. These include:

      • Eyedrops that curtail the progression of myopia
      • MiSight contact lenses that dramatically slow the progression of nearsightedness
      • Contact lenses that actually flatten the cornea through nightly wear

      There are also things parents can do at home to stem the onset of myopia. For instance, they can implement the 20-20-20 rule: Take a 20-second break from computer work every 20 minutes and look at something at least 20 feet away. It’s also important for parents to talk to their children about the amount of time they spend on devices.

      “There’s really no set standard of how long the child should be on the computer each day, but it should be limited,” says Linda Rappa, O.D., of EYEcenter Optometric. “For kids, electronics are fun. They watch YouTube, they’re on TikTok, and they play games. For them, it’s entertainment, so they won’t want to stop. Parents should do their best to regulate the amount of time their children spend on these electronics.”

      Dr. Rappa also points out that the blue light emitted from phones, tablets, and other devices also inhibits the production of melatonin, which regulates sleep patterns. Therefore, it’s important to discontinue the use of those devices at least an hour before bedtime in order to get a good night’s sleep.

      But even with the most diligent parenting, it’s still vital that these children see an optometrist early and often to ensure a lifetime of healthy sight. Children with nearsightedness should be undergoing some sort of treatment until age 25. This will affect them in more ways than just assuring them of a lifetime of improved vision. Nearsightedness can adversely impact a child’s ability to learn, their self-confidence, and their self-esteem. Better eyesight will improve safety and performance during physical activity and sports. And the ability to see clearly, without the long-term complications of myopia will also provide for an overall better quality of life.

      “If we can see them early in life, that’s when we can give them something that will really help,” says Dr. Fuerst. “If we can find the issues sooner, if we can catch these deficiencies early, these kids will have the opportunity to do so much better in life.”

      Originally published at https://www.htvnativeadsolutions.com/kcra/with-kids-screen-time-at-an-all-time-high-parents-need-to-have-an-eye-out-for-myopia-2/

      How Sleep Apnea Affects The Eyes

      Did you know that some eye conditions are associated with sleep apnea? According to the National Sleep Foundation, more than 18 million Americans have sleep apnea, and Health Canada reports similar prevalence. It’s a sleep disorder where people stop breathing — often multiple times per night — while sleeping.

      If you have sleep apnea: it tends to take longer for your tears to be replenished, you’re more likely to have ocular irritation, you have a higher chance of developing floppy eyelids, and you’re at increased risk for glaucoma.

      What Is Obstructive Sleep Apnea?

      There are different types of sleep apnea. The most common one is obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). During OSA, your airway becomes partially blocked due to relaxed muscles in your nose and throat. This causes apnea (the absence of breathing) or hypopnea (abnormally shallow, slow breathing). It’s twice as common in men, and is more likely to affect people with obesity, hypertension, diabetes or heart disease.

      What are the common symptoms of sleep apnea?

      Sleep apnea occurs when the muscles in the back of your throat relax too much to allow normal breathing. These temporary breathing lapses cause lower-quality sleep and affect the body’s oxygen supply, which can lead to potentially serious health consequences.

      While snoring is a common symptom, not everyone who snores has sleep apnea. Interrupted sleep can cause excessive daytime sleepiness, fatigue, irritability or depression, headaches in the morning, difficulty concentrating and thinking, and a sore throat.

      Which Eye Conditions Are Associated With Sleep Apnea?

      Glaucoma

      Glaucoma occurs when increased pressure within the eye damages the optic nerve, which connects the eye to the brain, leading to vision loss and sometimes blindness. In some cases, it might be due to a drop in blood oxygen levels, which happens when you stop breathing. However, CPAP machines, one of the most common treatments for sleep apnea, can also cause glaucoma.

      So, people with sleep apnea — even if it’s being treated — need to get their eyes checked on a regular basis for glaucoma.

      Floppy Eyelid Syndrome

      Floppy Eyelid Syndrome (FES) is an eye condition where a person has an unusually large and floppy upper eyelid. It can cause eye redness, irritation, discharge, or blurry vision — and over 90% of people with FES also have sleep apnea.

      Non-Arteritic Anterior Ischemic Optic Neuropathy

      Non-arteritic anterior ischemic optic neuropathy (NAION) is an eye condition that occurs when there is a loss of blood flow to the optic nerve. Patients typically complain of significant vision loss in one eye without any major pain. Approximately 70-80% of patients with NAION have been found to have OSA.

      Retinal Vein Occlusion

      Also referred to as an ‘eye stroke,’ retinal vein occlusion (RVO) is a blockage of the small veins that carry blood away from the retina. A recent study of 114 RVO patients found that sleep apnea was suspected in 74% of the patients that had previously been diagnosed with RVO.

      Other Eye Health Issues Associated With Sleep Apnea

      Some other ocular conditions that are more common in patients with sleep apnea include: papilledema, keratoconus, and central serous chorioretinopathy. Furthermore, in addition to glaucoma mentioned above, CPAP machines are associated with dry eye syndrome and bacterial conjunctivitis.

      Talk To Your Doc

      Get eye exams regularly to rule out eye disorders and prevent potential vision loss, especially if you have been diagnosed with sleep apnea. At EYEcenter Optometric in Citrus Heights we encourage you to share your medical history with us so we can better diagnose and treat any eye conditions or ocular diseases you may have, and help you keep your eyes nice and healthy.

      Frequently Asked Questions with Dr. Palmer N. Lee

      Q: What Causes Sleep Apnea?

      • A: Sleep apnea occurs when in-part or completely stop breathing when sleeping. This causes your lungs to strain harder for oxygen, and makes the brain send signals that jerk your body awake to resume proper breathing.

      Q: What are the Warning Signs of Sleep Apnea?

      • A: A common sign of sleep apnea is loud snoring. Snoring that is loud enough to disturb the sleep of the patient as well as others around, even across the walls. That said, not everyone who snores suffers from obstructive sleep apnea.

      Quality Frames For Prescription Eyeglasses & Computer Glasses In Sacramento, California. Visit EYEcenter optometric for an eye exam and eyeglasses that match your style.

      3 Benefits of Anti-Glare Coating

      Glare refers to the excessive brightness caused by direct or reflected light. It can cause eye strain, digital eye strain (when using a computer, for example), halos, and headaches. Glare can also reduce visibility, making it unsafe to drive.

      Anti-glare coating, also known as anti-reflective (AR) coating, is a thin layer applied to the surface of your eyeglass lenses that allows more light to pass through your lenses. By reducing the amount of glare that reflects off of your lenses, you can see more clearly and experience more comfortable vision. You can request anti-glare coating for lenses when you buy eyeglasses.

      AR Coating Offers 3 Major Advantages

      Better Appearance

      Without an anti-glare coating on your glasses, camera flashes and bright lights can reflect off your lenses. This can hinder your appearance when speaking to people or in meetings, cause flash reflections when picture-taking, and make it difficult to find the right angle for video calls. Anti-reflective coating eliminates the harsh reflections and allows others to clearly see your eyes and face.

      Reduced Digital Eye Strain

      You know that tired, irritated feeling you get after staring at a digital screen for several hours? That’s digital eye strain. Anti-glare coating helps reduce digital eye strain by lowering exposure to excessive glare from digital devices and lighting.

      Safe Driving at Night

      The bright headlights from cars driving in the opposite direction can pose a serious danger when driving at night. These sudden glares can lead you to momentarily lose focus of the view ahead. AR coating on your prescription eyewear effectively reduces reflections from headlights at night, allowing you to enjoy a better view of the road and safer driving at night.

      Let your eyes look and feel better every day with anti-glare coated lenses. Contact us to book your appointment today!

      Q: Can you request lenses made from glass? Is glass still used for lenses?

      • A: Yes. Opticians still sometimes use glass for lenses. However, glass is not used very often because they aren’t as safe. If these glass lenses breaks, they can shatters into many pieces and can injure the eye. Glass lenses are much heavier than plastic lenses, so they can make your eyeglasses less comfortable to wear.

      Q: Can a coating be added to eyeglasses to protect them from further scratches?

      • A: A protective coating can’t be added to a lens after it’s scratched. The coating is applied when the lens is manufactured and can’t be put on later.

      Quality Frames For Prescription Eyeglasses & Computer Glasses In Sacramento, California. Visit EYEcenter optometric for an eye exam and eyeglasses that match your style.

      What You Should Know About Night Blindness

      If you don’t see well while driving at night, there’s a chance you have night blindness. Night blindness, or nyctalopia, is the inability to see well at night or in dim lighting. It’s not considered an eye disease, but rather a symptom of an underlying problem.

      Our eye doctor in Citrus Heights can help diagnose, manage and treat your night blindness with specialized digital eye exams, so that you can enjoy being out and about at night again.
      Here are 4 things you should know about night blindness:

      Causes of Night Blindness

      The inability to see well at night can be the result of a condition such as:

        • Vitamin A Deficiency — Vitamin A helps keep your cornea, the layer at the front of your eye, clear; it’s also an important component of rhodopsin, a protein that enables you to see in low light conditions. Although uncommon in North America, deficiency of this vitamin can induce night blindness.
        • CataractsA buildup of protein clouds the eye’s lens, leading to impaired vision, especially at night and in poor lighting conditions.
        • Diabetic RetinopathyDamage to the eyes’ blood vessels and nerves can result in vision loss, including difficulty seeing at night.
        • GlaucomaThis group of eye diseases is associated with pressure build-up in the eye that damages the optic nerve. Both glaucoma and the medications used to treat it can cause night blindness.
        • MyopiaAlso called nearsightedness, myopia makes distant objects appear blurry, and patients with it describe a starburst effect around lights at night.
        • KeratoconusAn irregularly shaped cornea causes blurred vision and may involve sensitivity to light and glare which tend to be worse at night.
        • Retinitis Pigmentosa (RP)A progressive genetic eye disease which can be associated with other diseases, RP leads to night blindness and peripheral vision loss.
        • Usher SyndromeThis genetic condition causes both hearing loss and vision loss, including night blindness and RP, mentioned above.

      Symptoms of Nyctalopia

      Since night blindness is a symptom of some serious vision problems, it’s important to get your eyes checked regularly to ensure that everything is in good working order. Contact your eye doctor as soon as possible if you notice that you don’t see as well in dim light as you used to, such as when driving at night or when adjusting from being outdoors in the sunshine to being indoors.

      Symptoms of Night Blindness Include:

      • Reduced contrast sensitivity
      • Difficulty seeing people outdoors at night
      • Difficulty seeing in places with dim lighting, like a movie theater
      • Trouble adapting to the dark while driving
      • Excessive squinting at night
      • Trouble adjusting from bright areas to darker ones

      Treatments for Night Blindness

      Your eye doctor will want to diagnose the cause of your night blindness in order to treat it. For example, in the rare case of vitamin A deficiency, it can be treated with vitamin supplements and vitamin-A rich foods; myopia can be corrected with eyeglasses or contact lenses. Other conditions may require medications or surgery.

      If night blindness is caused by a birth defect, Usher syndrome, or retinitis pigmentosa, low vision aids and devices can help you make the most of your remaining vision.

      Prevention

      While there is no proven way to prevent night blindness resulting from genetic conditions or birth defects, consuming healthy, nourishing foods and taking certain vitamin supplements may prevent or slow the onset of some eye conditions that cause night blindness.

      If you experience poor vision at night or in dim lighting, we can help. Contact EYEcenter Optometric in Citrus Heights to schedule your appointment today.

      Frequently Asked Questions with Dr. Herring

      Q: Can you request lenses made from glass? Is glass still used for lenses?

      • A: Yes. Opticians still sometimes use glass for lenses. However, glass is not used very often because they aren’t as safe. If these glass lenses breaks, they can shatters into many pieces and can injure the eye. Glass lenses are much heavier than plastic lenses, so they can make your eyeglasses less comfortable to wear.

      Q: Can a coating be added to eyeglasses to protect them from further scratches?

      • A: A protective coating can’t be added to a lens after it’s scratched. The coating is applied when the lens is manufactured and can’t be put on later.

      Quality Frames For Prescription Eyeglasses & Computer Glasses In Sacramento, California. Visit EYEcenter optometric for an eye exam and eyeglasses that match your style.

      What to Expect Following Glaucoma Surgery

      happy senior couple 640Glaucoma is a sight-threatening eye disease that can start as early as age 40 and often has no signs until it’s too late and permanent damage to your eye has already begun. Left untreated, glaucoma leads to vision loss (‘tunnel vision’) or even total blindness. While there’s no cure for glaucoma, the earlier it’s diagnosed, the better the outcome.

      In the early stages, medication can often control glaucoma by facilitating the drainage of excess eye fluid from the eye. Eventually, however, surgery may be necessary.

      Glaucoma surgery stabilizes eye pressure and helps prevent future vision loss. Glaucoma surgery is successful in about 70-90% of cases and the benefits may be long-lasting.

      Below Are the 5 Things You Should Expect as You Recover From Glaucoma Surgery

      You’ve finally had your glaucoma surgery. Now it’s time to relax and give your eyes time to heal. It is crucial to take care of your eyes in order to protect them from injury.

      Though recovering from glaucoma surgery usually involves only mild discomfort, each person’s general physical health and type of surgery will affect their recovery experience and time.

      Blurred Vision and Minor Discomfort

      Following glaucoma surgery, it’s common for your vision to become blurred. This can last from a few days to 6 weeks. Inflammation, swelling, redness, or irritation in the eye are all common during the first few days post-surgery. You may also experience a slight itchy feeling caused by the stitches and your eyes may also tear up or water more than usual during the recovery period.

      If you experience a sudden loss of vision during this time, it’s important to contact your eye doctor immediately, as this could signal surgery-related complications.

      No Driving

      Driving is not recommended while recovering from glaucoma surgery, particularly right after the surgery. Make sure you have someone to drive you home after the surgery and to drive you to follow-up appointments with your eye doctor.

      During your follow-up visits, your eye doctor will advise you when you can get behind the wheel again, but in general, most patients can resume driving approximately two weeks after surgery. But always discuss this with your eye doctor first.

      Rest and Relaxation

      During the recovery process, it’s important to take your time to relax and allow the eye to slowly heal. This means avoiding any heavy lifting and strenuous exercise. Restrictions can sometimes include simple tasks like reading, writing, or typing, as even these activities can place stress on the tiny surgical incisions made during the surgery.

      Be sure to ask your eye doctor when you can resume certain daily tasks and hobbies.

      Follow Doctor’s Orders

      As with any surgery, a successful recovery depends on closely following the post-op care and instructions you receive. After glaucoma surgery, your your eye doctor will place an eye shield and padding or a bandage to protect the eye that has undergone surgery. Be sure to keep this in place until your doctor tells you to remove it.

      Your eye doctor will likely recommend a series of eye drops that contain anti-inflammatory and antibiotic properties. It’s important to insert these drops as instructed to prevent infection, facilitate healing, and ease irritation.

      The staff will set up your post-surgery follow-up appointments to ensure that your eyes are healing properly, with no signs of infection.

      Proper Care and Hygiene

      A few tips:

      • The eye shield is placed on the eye directly after the surgery in order to prevent you from rubbing or touching your eyes, as this can severely damage your delicate eyes.
      • Make sure you remember to wash your hands with soap and warm water prior to using eye drops.
      • Take care while showering the day after surgery. Make sure that shampoo, soap, hair spray, etc., don’t enter your eyes, especially during the first week.
      • It’s especially important to wear protective eyewear during your recovery, particularly during summertime. Eyewear protects your eyes from the sun’s UV rays, as well as from particles that can irritate sensitive eyes.
      • You may need to refrain from taking steroids for a period of time, since they can cause increased eye pressure and glaucoma risk. Your eye doctor will discuss all your medications with you.
      • Avoid swimming pools and hot tubs, as they can carry bacteria that can enter the eye and cause an infection. If swimming and other water sports are important to you, seek your eye doctor’s approval prior to jumping in.

      Other things to consider:

      • Following glaucoma surgery, you should wear your glasses and not contact lenses
      • At night, you should wear the eye shield provided by your eye doctor
      • If you find your eyes are sensitive to light, wear sunglasses to reduce any discomfort
      • Do not wear eye makeup and avoid face cream for at least two weeks post-op

      Protecting Your Vision and Eye Health

      To protect your eye health and vision, it’s necessary to see your eye doctor for routine exams, as they can help catch glaucoma and other eye diseases early, when treatment is most effective.

      To ensure that you have the best recovery possible, make sure to follow your eye doctor’s instructions. We will work with you to find the best treatment options. Contact today to consult with our optometric team and discover how we can help preserve your vision.

      serves patients from Sacramento, Folsom, Roseville, and Elk Grove, all throughout California .

      Frequently Asked Questions with Dr. Herring

      Q: Can you request lenses made from glass? Is glass still used for lenses?

      • A: Yes. Opticians still sometimes use glass for lenses. However, glass is not used very often because they aren’t as safe. If these glass lenses breaks, they can shatters into many pieces and can injure the eye. Glass lenses are much heavier than plastic lenses, so they can make your eyeglasses less comfortable to wear.

      Q: Can a coating be added to eyeglasses to protect them from further scratches?

      • A: A protective coating can’t be added to a lens after it’s scratched. The coating is applied when the lens is manufactured and can’t be put on later.

      Quality Frames For Prescription Eyeglasses & Computer Glasses In Sacramento, California. Visit EYEcenter optometric for an eye exam and eyeglasses that match your style.

      Protect Your Eyes From Harmful Wildfire Smoke

      wildefireWildfires, including those still devastating parts of the western United States and Canada, can harm your health, including your eyes. The hot smoke, ash, and soot billowing into the air contain a mixture of noxious gases and fine particles of burned vegetation that spread with the winds, sometimes hundreds of miles from the fire.

      Wildfire smoke is made up of thousands of compounds, including those used in plastic, dry-cleaning solutions, and solvents. Asbestos, a toxic air contaminant, is also released into the air when buildings burn.

      These pollutants can harm your eye’s surface, causing blurred vision and redness, and may also cause y a burning sensation leading eyes to become watery, dry, or itchy. Wildfire smoke also aggravates pre-existing health conditions like dry-eyes and ocular allergies and may make wearing contact lenses uncomfortable—even impossible—to wear.

      In extreme cases, wildfire smoke may even lead to scarring of the conjunctiva, the thin membrane covering the white of the eye and the eyelids’ underside. Scarring damages the conjunctiva and its protective mucous layer.

      The American Academy of Ophthalmology suggests the following steps to keep your eyes healthy when smoke is in the air:

      • Double the quantity of over-the-counter artificial tears you use to address eye conditions and cool the artificial tears’ vials or bottles in a refrigerator before using
      • Apply cool compresses to your eyelids
      • Stay indoors and close the windows to reduce smoke’s effects
      • Use an air purifier or air filter in your home or office
      • Refrain from drawing outside air into your air conditioner
      • Refrain from wearing contact lenses, which attract wildfires’ dust particles
      • Wear eyeglasses, sunglasses, or specialty goggles if you are outdoors

      Continue observing these precautions even after the smoke has cleared as particles can linger in the air for up to two weeks.

      If smoke-related symptoms or discomfort persist, please contact EYEcenter Optometric. We will examine your eyes and prescribe the appropriate treatment. We treat patients with wildfire-related vision challenges from Sacramento, Folsom, Roseville, Elk Grove, and throughout California .

      References:

      Signs That You Might Have Cataracts

      Middle Aged Couple Multifocal ContactsThe crystalline lens, which sits inside the eye, allows us to focus on objects near and far. The lens is thin, soft, and clear throughout our youth, but the gradual buildup of protein that begins in our 40s or 50s makes the lens thick, rigid, and opaque. Left untreated, the cataract will disrupt vision, and can eventually cause blindness.

      Symptoms of cataracts include:

      • foggy or blurred vision, with less light reaching the retina
      • sensitivity to light, especially strong sunlight
      • difficulty seeing at night, especially while driving, when the headlights of approaching cars appear dispersed
      • frequently needing to update your eyeglass prescription
      • colors becoming less vivid and more yellow
      • images appearing in duplicate, even with only one eye open
      • halos around lit objects

      Besides aging, cataracts can develop due to

      • genetics
      • medical conditions, such as diabetes
      • head trauma
      • eye injuries
      • excessive smoking and drinking
      • Poor nutrition

      What Can be Done About Cataracts?

      Wearing sunglasses, ingesting Vitamins C and E, and eating antioxidant-rich fruits, vegetables, and nuts can delay the onset of cataracts.

      If you suspect you may have cataracts, the first step is to contact , where will conduct a thorough examination, including dilating your pupils to check for possible protein buildup on your crystalline lens. If you have cataracts but can still see well, you might benefit from a strengthened eyeglass prescription.

      When updating your prescription ceases to help, cataract surgery is the best solution. In that case, will speak with you about the advantages of cataract surgery. If the examination finds cataracts in both eyes, the procedures will almost certainly be performed on separate days to allow each eye to recover independently.

      During cataract surgery, will replace the affected lens with an artificial lens. It is done on an outpatient basis, is virtually painless, and has a very high rate of success.

      At , we care for patients with cataracts from Sacramento, Folsom, Roseville, Elk Grove, and throughout California .

      References:

      Vision Goals for 2019

      What’s your new year’s resolution? Does it have anything to do with your health? We have a few easy ways to keep your goal of healthy eyes and vision at the top of your priorities list all year long!

      WINTER

      1. Eat healthy. We know the holidays can be especially tempting for poor diet choices, but make it a point to add leafy greens, colorful fruit or anything containing omega-3 fatty acids for good eye health. (Need recipe ideas? CLICK HERE)
      2. Quit smoking. No butts about it: Smoking is harmful to almost every organ in your body, including your eyes. Those who smoke are up to four times more likely to go blind in old age. If you are a smoker, make a New Year’s resolution to kick the habit.
      3. Give the gift of vision. During the gift-giving season, consider purchasing frames from Eyes of Faith, EYEcenter’s line of eyewear that provides vision care and eyeglasses to local foster teens. Ask an optician for details!
      4. Vision insurance. If you have vision insurance and health savings benefits that expire at the end of December, be sure to use them in time. This also is a good time to schedule your family’s eye exams for the New Year and take advantage of insurance benefits that cover exams, glasses and contact lenses.

      SPRING

      1. Allergy relief. Seasonal allergies can have you in a fog, with itchy eyes and a runny nose. Pay extra attention to what triggers your allergies so you’ll know what to avoid. Click here for more allergy tips and visit EYEcenter if your eyes become red, watery or swollen.
      2. Upgrade your eyewear. Spring fashion trends inspire great new frame designs. Visit any EYEcenter to see what’s in this season–we get all new inventory twice a year!
      3. Recycle unused pairs. After you’ve upgraded your eyeglasses, consider donating your old eyewear to someone in need. You can change the life of someone who can’t afford an eye exam or eyewear. Unsure where to donate? Bring your unused pairs to any EYEcenter location, we’ll take care of it!
      4. Sports eyewear. Almost 90 percent of sports-related eye injuries are preventable with protective eyewear. Sports glasses offer eye protection, color enhancement, light control and more. Ask an optician for help finding the best sports eyewear to keep your eyes safe and enhance your game.

      SUMMEREye care Family (1)

      1. Sun protection. It’s important to wear sunglasses all year long, but summertime is great for purchasing new shades for your whole family. Even little eyes need protection from the sun’s harmful UV rays. Remember that UV rays can damage eyes even on cloudy days. Wearing sunglasses whenever you are outside can reduce your risk for cataracts and macular degeneration.
      2. Polarized lenses. Don’t let glare from the sun ruin outdoor activities like boating, golfing and even jogging. Polarized lenses for sunglasses can help control glare and provide a clearer view with a special filter that blocks intense reflected light.
      3. Swim goggles. Whether it’s a dip in the pool, a visit to the beach, or jumping into a lake, you should never wear contacts while swimming unless you’re also wearing goggles. Goggles protect your eyes from waterborne bacteria that can cause sight-threatening diseases. Goggles also sharpen your vision while you swim, snorkel or explore underwater.
      4. Eye exams. Before school starts, make sure your kids have comprehensive eye exams to help detect any vision problems that could affect their learning. In-school vision screenings are not a substitute for eye exams.

      AUTUMN

      1. Rest your eyes. If you’re spending more time indoors on a computer, or sit in front of a computer at work, remember to rest your eyes. Follow the “20-20-20” rule — take a break every 20 minutes and look at something that is at least 20 feet away for 20 seconds — to reduce your risk of computer vision syndrome.
      2. Shopping. Planning to take advantage of the deals on Black Friday or Cyber Monday? Remember to include new eyewear on your shopping list! Take advantage of your Flex-Spending Accounts to purchase glasses, before they expire at the end of the year.
      3. Stay active. Don’t let the colder weather keep you from exercising regularly. Staying active is good for your entire body and can help protect against diabetes, macular degeneration and more.
      4. Drink lots of water. The fall season brings with it lots of yummy coffee and hot cocoa flavors, but don’t forget to continue to drink lots of water. If you don’t drink enough water, you can dehydrate your body and in turn not produce enough tears to keep your eyes moist and comfortable. Eye-related symptoms of dehydration include redness, dryness and puffy eyelids.

      Throughout the year, if you have any questions or needs not addressed on this list please give us a call! Click here for our contact information, and to schedule an appointment. Cheers to 2019!

       

      The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.

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