Laser eye surgery is a common method of vision correction. Many people seek it in order to free themselves of glasses or contacts. However, depending on one’s prescription, eligibility, choice of surgical procedure and outcome can vary and it is important to keep expectations as realistic as possible. In certain cases, if you are only slightly nearsighted, it may actually be desirable to keep this prescription so that you are less dependent on reading glasses later in life. Explained below are three very common refractive procedures. It is worth mentioning that there are other less common methods that your eye doctor can discuss with you if you have specific needs or concerns.
Rosacea is a skin condition that causes redness of the face and bumpy skin lesions, and it is relatively common in the US. It can also be a significant risk factor for dry eye disease. Many people who suffer from rosacea also experience inflamed eyelids, Meibomian gland dysfunction, and moderate to severe dry eyes. When these symptoms are caused by the underlying skin condition, they are referred to as ocular rosacea. Ocular rosacea can be difficult to diagnose and effectively treat, so it is important to know the risk factors and warning signs.
What is Rosacea?
Rosacea is not an ocular condition, it is a skin condition, and it must be diagnosed, treated, and managed by a dermatologist. It causes chronic symptoms that most commonly includes facial redness, and may also include highly visible blood vessels (also known as telangiectasia), pus-filled bumps on the facial skin, and even a large bulbous appearance to the nose. The exact underlying cause of rosacea is still unknown, but doctors do know that certain triggers can be responsible for flare-ups or worsening of symptoms. Common triggers include stress, sun exposure or warm temperatures, exercise, certain foods (especially spicy cuisine), alcohol, or even some medications or lotions. Avoiding triggers is an important aspect of living with rosacea. It can also be controlled with topical or prescription medications.
How does Rosacea Cause Dry Eyes?
Rosacea results in chronic inflammation of the eyelids and surrounding tissue. As we know, the eyelids play a pivotal role in the health of the ocular surface. When rosacea results in inflamed eyelids, it can cause additional eye problems like blepharitis and Meibomian gland dysfunction. Both of these eyelid conditions cause or worsen symptoms of dry eye disease. Those who are affected by ocular rosacea are more likely to suffer from dry eyes, and typically experience a more severe degree of dry eye symptoms. Some people affected by rosacea will have red and puffy eyelids, but for others the condition is much less noticeable. At a routine eye examination, your doctor can closely review your medical history and the health of your eyes to see if an underlying condition, such as rosacea, is causing or worsening your symptoms of dry eye disease.
How is Ocular Rosacea Treated?
Treating ocular rosacea is a long-term process. The most important aspect of controlling the symptoms is to manage the underlying eyelid inflammation. This includes lifestyle modifications like avoiding triggers and taking any medications that are recommended by your dermatologist. It also requires ocular treatments like lid scrubs to keep the eyelids free of bacteria and debris. In many cases of ocular rosacea, prescription medications will be recommended to reduce eye inflammation and improve comfort. This can include topical ointments, eye drops, or oral medications. If you suffer from ocular rosacea, it is likely that you will need to work closely with both your dermatologist and your optometrist in order to control inflammation, improve ocular health, and reduce uncomfortable symptoms of dry eye disease.
Our eye doctor at Innovative Vision Care in Belton, Missouri excels in the prescription of contact lenses, glasses and various eye diseases. Call our optometrist at 816.331.9590 or request an appointment online if you would like to be evaluated for ocular rosacea or dry eyes. Our eye doctor, Dr. Aaron Law, provides the highest quality optometry services and eye exams in Belton, MO.
Dry eye treatment can include over-the-counter eye drops, prescription medications, ointments, and more. In moderate to severe cases of dry eye disease, these treatment options may not be enough to completely relieve symptoms of burning, grittiness, and irritation. For those resistant cases, punctal plugs may be the answer. Punctal plugs are small medical devices that can provide a more permanent form of treatment and deliver long term relief for those who are significantly affected by dry eye disease.
For kids and teenagers, trying contact lenses for the first time can be both a scary and exciting experience. Most first-timers and their parents will have lots of questions about trying contact lenses. What age is appropriate for trying contacts for the first time? What type of lenses should be worn? Are there any risks? The truth is that the answers to these questions varies from person to person. There are many factors to consider and to discuss with your optometrist before trying contact lenses. Continue reading to learn more about them.
Symptoms of dry eye disease are very common and affect millions of people. For some people who rely on contact lenses for clear vision, dryness and irritation can be worsened by the daily wear of their lenses. While this can be a frustrating experience, luckily there are many options to improve comfort for people who experience dryness related to their contact lenses. If you are experiencing discomfort and dryness, talk to your eye doctor before giving up on your contacts.
Pink eye is a well-known term that is commonly used to describe conjunctivitis, an ocular condition that causes red irritated eyes. The conjunctiva is a clear membrane that covers the white portion of the eye. When conjunctivitis occurs, the conjunctiva becomes infected, irritated, or inflamed due to a variety of reasons. There are several different forms of “pink eye,” each with different underlying causes, symptoms, and treatment approaches. Continue reading to learn more about pink eye.
Myopia, more commonly known as nearsightedness, is becoming more and more prevalent across the world. This vision problem causes objects that are far away to appear blurry and out-of-focus. Most of the time, myopia can be easily fixed with glasses, contact lenses, or refractive surgery such as LASIK or PRK. However, the condition can also increase the risk of certain eye health conditions such as retinal tears or detachments, glaucoma, or the early development of cataracts. Because myopia is becoming increasingly common, especially among American children, this public health concern has the attention of eye care providers.
Scleral lenses are specialty contact lenses that have gained popularity among eye care providers and patients alike. Scleral lenses are large diameter contact lenses that vault over the front surface of the eye and rest smoothly on the sclera, or the white area. Before putting on the lens, it is filled with a nourishing fluid that keeps the front surface of the eye lubricated throughout the entire day. The unique lens design and stable material of scleral lenses provides many people with clear and comfortable vision.
You may have heard of the phrase “lazy eye,” which is oftentimes used to describe when one eye has reduced vision. Eye care professionals refer to this condition as amblyopia. If it is not detected and treated early, amblyopia has the potential to permanently effect vision. In many cases of amblyopia, the affected child may not demonstrate symptoms of vision problems. This is why it is important for your child to be examined by an optometrist, even if you do not suspect problems.
While vision correction, such as contact lenses and glasses, is an important part of eye examinations, there are many other essential aspects. One of the most important roles that our optometrists perform is completing a thorough ocular health evaluation. Ocular health examinations assess the entire eye, from the very front surface to the back inner lining. By closely looking at all of the tissues of the eye using high powered microscopes and specialized lenses, optometrists can identify eye conditions such as dry eye disease, macular degeneration, or glaucoma. They can also detect ocular changes from systemic conditions, like diabetes or high blood pressure. Many ocular health conditions are painless, so regular health evaluations are important to rule out potential problems and ensure that your eyes will be healthy for many years to come.
Soft contact lenses are one of the most popular, convenient, and versatile corrective options. These medical devices allow millions of Americans to have clear vision without relying on glasses. Thanks to new designs and developments in the realm of contact lenses, soft contacts are an option for almost everybody.
Myopia, or nearsightedness, is a common form of refractive error that causes objects in the distance to appear blurry or out-of-focus, and can easily be remedied by a pair of glasses or contact lenses. Myopia has been gaining attention amongst eye care providers because the prevalence of nearsightedness is on the rise. Not only are more and more children developing myopia, but the amount of myopia is becoming more severe. While some children are more likely to develop nearsightedness due to a genetic predisposition, research suggests that environmental factors such as prolonged reading and near work also plays a role in the development of myopia.
Headaches can be caused by a wide range of problems, but many people find that certain visual activities can trigger or worsen headaches. Many times, these headaches can be relieved with glasses or contact lenses. Sometimes vision training exercises are necessary to reduce vision-related headaches. It is also important to rule out more serious health problems that could be causing your symptoms. If you or a family member are frequently experiencing vision or eye-related headaches, it may be time to visit your optometrist. They can check to see if one of the common conditions listed below are the causes for your headaches.
Many people experience watery eyes, which can be irritating and can interfere with vision. While it may seem counterintuitive, watery eyes may be a sign of dry eye disease. In most cases, watery and runny eyes indicate an underlying condition called Meibomian Gland Dysfunction, which plays a major role in dry eye symptoms. Meibomian Gland Dysfunction, also called MGD, affects the production of the natural tear film of the eye and can result in symptoms such as watering, burning, grittiness, or feeling like something is “in the eye.” In order to stop these symptoms, we have to address the underlying dryness.
Choosing your next pair of eyeglasses should be a fun and enjoyable experience, though many people finding themselves overwhelmed with the number of decisions they face. There are many things to consider, from choosing the right frame to deciding on lens options, and the new flood of online optical retailers only makes the process more confusing. Continue reading for our tips on how to buy the perfect pair of glasses.
Trying to find non-prescription eye drops at the drugstore can be an overwhelming experience. Anyone who has wandered through the eye care aisle in a store knows there are an endless number of options for artificial tears, ointments, eye washes, and more. For those who are looking to treat their symptoms of dry eye disease with lubricating eye drops, trying to navigate these options can be confusing and frustrating. Here is a basic guide to consider the next time you find yourself trying to find an appropriate over-the-counter eye drop.
If you notice that your symptoms of dry eye disease are worse in the morning, you may be experiencing the effects of nighttime dryness. Many people believe that the night is a time when our eyes are protected from symptoms of dryness or irritation; however, for some people, it can actually be the most damaging time of the day. Do you notice that your eyes are most uncomfortable upon awakening? Continue reading to learn if you are affected by nighttime dryness.
Soft contact lenses have become one of the most popular choices for vision correction, but they are not the only choice for contact lens wearers. There are other types of specialty contact lenses that can provide clear vision, even for those who may have unsuccessfully tried soft contact lenses in the past. These lenses can be helpful tools for contact lens wearers who suffer from symptoms of dry eye disease, or for those with very strong prescriptions or with high amounts of astigmatism. Specialty contact lenses can also be used in the treatment and management of certain corneal diseases, such as keratoconus, where the front surface of the eye is irregularly shaped and traditional glasses or contact lenses cannot provide adequate visual correction. While specialty contact lenses are favored in some of these “difficult” eyes, they are still an option for everyone. Continue reading to learn about the benefits of specialty contact lenses.
The symptoms of dry eye disease typically include irritation, redness, burning, grittiness, watering, or itching. These symptoms can be burdensome, and many people find that dry eye disease negatively impacts their daily life. Treatment for dry eyes is usually a long-term approach that focuses on adequately and efficiently reducing symptoms and reducing the burden of ocular irritation. If you suffer from dry eye disease, your optometrist will have the best recommendation regarding what treatment options are best for you. Below are some of the common treatment approaches for this disease.
One of the leading causes of blindness in older Americans is Age-Related Macular Degeneration, also called AMD or simply macular degeneration. This disease is a progressive condition that causes a decrease in central vision due to retinal damage. Because the American population is aging, this condition is becoming more and more common. Here is what to know if you or a loved one is faced with a diagnosis of macular degeneration.