Nutrition Tips From An Optometrist

Phoenix Optometrist Few things are better for your health than nutrient-rich foods. While they benefit your overall health, foods rich in vitamins such as beta-carotene, vitamin C and vitamin D are very important for optimal eye health. To better understand the nutrients that can keep your eyes in excellent shape, take a look at these nutrition tips from a Phoenix optometrist.

Carrots, Sweet Potato and Spinach

These three vegetables are full of beta-carotene and are easy to add to just about any meal! Since beta-carotene is made up of antioxidants that help to form a barrier against foreign objects such as bacteria and dust, our Phoenix optometrist stands by beta-carotene as a great shield to protect the surface of your eye. A delicious and easy way to include carrots, sweet potatoes and spinach in one meal is by whipping up a salad. Add a bit of balsamic vinaigrette dressing to sweeten things up!

Bell Peppers, Broccoli and Citrus Fruits

We all know that oranges contain loads of vitamin C, but what about vegetables? Broccoli and bell peppers are also high in this vitamin, building up immunity and strengthening your connective tissue to prevent against cataracts and muscle degeneration. It is crucial to give your body a proper amount of vitamin C, as your body does not produce it naturally. Add bell peppers to your dinner with some light dressing to get your daily dose of vitamin C!

Eggs, Mushrooms and Fatty Fish

Vitamin D is made up of anti-inflammatory properties and aids in keeping your eyes youthful by slowing down the aging process. Consuming the proper amount of vitamin D can help to preserve your eyesight and your overall eye health as you age. Vitamin D is found in eggs and salmon, and mushrooms, so a yummy way incorporate these foods into your diet is to have a mushroom omelet or baked salmon with a creamy mushroom sauce!

With the right recipes and the right ingredients, it is easy to get all the nutrients you need to have healthy eyes and enjoy a scrumptious meal! For more information about nutrition and eye health, or to book an eye exam with one of our Phoenix optometrists, visit our website.

Eye Health Safety Tips for Kids

Eye HealthIt’s that time of year again! Families rushing to buy binders, books, clothes, backpacks, and all other last-minute items to get their kids ready for the new school year. Unfortunately, with the back-to-school rush, it is easy to forget about taking your child to get an eye exam or ensure they are taking good care of their peepers. While the new school year can be exciting for your kids, having an underlying eye health condition could seriously compromise their academic success. Since August is Children’s Eye Health and Safety Month, here are a few ways to make sure that your kids’ eyes are in great shape for the school year ahead.

Eye Health Tips and Vision Development for Young Children

If you have a newborn in the family, make sure to keep him or her out of direct contact with the sun, as babies are very sensitive to light. After babies are one month old, they will be able to see more clearly and sharply, and they will also be able to see color. When babies are four months old, they can differentiate colors and will see the entire spectrum of the rainbow. To ensure that your baby can see well, you should make sure that he or she can track objects and recognize you.

Eye Health Tips for Older Children

As your child ages, you should make sure to schedule a regular eye exam with an optometrist, even if your child appears not to have any vision problems. Astigmatism, a general blurriness that is caused by a misshapen eye, can develop at any age, but children can also grow out of this vision ailment. If your child complains of difficulty when reading or writing, or suffers from frequent headaches, these are signs that he or she may have an eyesight problem that should be examined by a professional. Most schools require kids to have yearly eye exams so that their vision is checked frequently.

If you have any questions about kids’ eye health or would like to book an appointment at Valley Eyecare Center, give us a call at (602) 955-2700, or visit our website.

What Is Astigmatism?

Eye ExamAlthough there are many issues that can cause vision impairment, one of the most common ocular problems is astigmatism. If the cornea of the eye is misshapen, a person is said to have astigmatism because light is prevented from properly entering the retina, causing blurred vision at every angle. Learn more about symptoms, diagnosis, and treatment options for astigmatism that you may want to take into consideration before your next eye exam.

Symptoms

Catching symptoms of astigmatism can be tricky, as these can be associated with other eye health issues, making it important to get an eye exam. Aside from blurred vision, symptoms may include fatigue or headaches, both of which can be caused by cloudy eyesight. If you notice a change in your eyesight, make sure to visit your optometrist as soon as possible to get checked for astigmatism.

Diagnosis

Optometrists can discover astigmatism through a comprehensive eye exam. Doctors test the eyes for visual acuity, curvature of the cornea and how the eyes focus light. Depending on the results of these tests, the patient may receive a diagnosis for astigmatism and decide on a method of treatment.

Treatment

There are three popular forms of treatment for astigmatism, all of which are proven to work incredibly well and restore eyesight to its proper state.

  • Eyeglasses: This is the most common form of treatment, as there is little to no upkeep and are easily removable. The glasses made for this condition use a cylindrical lens prescription that works to counteract the astigmatism.
  • Contact Lenses: Patients usually find contacts to work better in terms of overall vision enhancement because the lens covers the entire eye, providing a clearer, wider field of view. We recommend the brand Acuvue, which has a lens created specifically for eyes with astigmatism.
  • LASIK Eye Surgery: This option is a bit more extreme since the tissue causing the curvature around the eye is removed with a laser, but patients have seen excellent, long-lasting results from this surgery. However, we urge you to do research and find an experienced surgeon before booking this procedure.

 

To learn more about astigmatism or to book an eye exam at Valley Eyecare Center, call (602) 242-6888 or visit our website.

 

Why We Love Acuvue and So Should You

Contact LensesVision problems can make everyday life difficult. Luckily, Acuvue contact lenses can give you the freedom to complete your daily routine with no disruptions due to vision impairment. Whether you struggle with astigmatism or presbyopia, Acuvue offers a variety of contact lenses that target different issues. If you are looking for new contacts, this quick overview will help you decide if Acuvue is right for you.

Variety

No matter if you are nearsighted or farsighted, have chronically dry eyes, an astigmatism, or even presbyopia, there is a pair of Acuvue contacts for you. For near or farsightedness, eight different types of lenses are offered, ranging from those that must be replaced every day to those that are replaced every two weeks. They can also be specialized for extra hydration if you suffer from dry eyes. Those with astigmatism—blurry vision at all distances—also have the option of daily or two-week pairs. Patients with presbyopia—difficulty focusing on near objects or smaller print, starting at around age 40—have the ability to wear either one day or two week multifocal lenses! No matter the vision problems you have or may develop over time, Acuvue has got you covered.

Convenience

While you may be intimidated by wearing or putting in contact lenses, once you get the hang of it, the process of taking them in and out will simply become a part of your daily routine. By wearing Acuvue contacts, you have the ability not only to ease through your regular day but also to take part in activities that glasses may have stopped you from taking part in, such as getting into the pool or playing sports. These contact lenses relinquish your freedom to live the life you want with no vision limitations!

For more information about Acuvue contact lenses, or to schedule an eye exam with one of our optometrists, call (602) 242-6888 or visit our website.

 

 

Get Sunglasses for UV Safety Month

Eye SafetyFrom a young age, we were all taught how important it is to keep our eyes protected from the sun. Today, there are not only advancements in sun protection for our peepers but also countless styles of sunglasses suitable for everyone. While you may choose certain sunglasses in order to be trendy, it is crucial to know exactly what to look for in lenses to ensure maximum eye safety.

Protection

The most important feature of sunglasses is the amount of protection they provide while you’re out in the sun. Too much exposure to UV rays can lead to many eye health issues, such as cataracts, muscular degeneration, and even cancer. To prevent these possible side effects, it is best to look for sunglasses that protect against 99 to 100 percent of both UVA and UVB light.

Fit

Style is important when it comes to choosing sunglasses that you will wear every day, but you should keep in mind the purpose for which you are wearing them. The way your glasses fit is crucial to ensure eye safety. If you sunglasses are too large for your face, they may fall easily or leave areas of your eyes unprotected due to misplacement. When looking for the right pair of sunglasses, make sure you can move around without them sliding off your nose.

View

The way your sunglasses look and feel are vital to making sure they are the right pair for you. However, another aspect to take into consideration is the way you see through them. If you wear glasses or contacts, it is best to get sunglasses that work with your lifestyle. Your vision is essential no matter what you are doing or where you are going throughout the day, so always wear sunglasses that support your vision in whatever ways needed.

For more information about UV eye safety or to schedule an eye exam with one of our optometrists, visit our website.

 

Myths About Contact Lenses, Debunked

Contact LensesContact lenses are perhaps the most convenient way to go about your everyday life without pesky vision problems getting in the way. Unfortunately, many people still hold a negative view toward contacts and some are even afraid of trying them. For that reason, our optometrists decided to compile the following list of myths and misconceptions about these innovative vision correctors. Keep reading to find out the truth about contacts.

Myth: They are uncomfortable

Let’s start with the most popular myth: discomfort. The evolution of contact lenses has come a long way, and comfort is the number-one priority when it comes to those who wear them. Contact lenses are now thinner, flexible, and more comfortable than ever—especially for those who suffer from issues such as astigmatism or extreme dryness.

Myth: The upkeep is a hassle

This is most certainly not true. Contact lenses are extremely easy to take care of. There are only two maintenance steps: first, soak them in a solution-filled case every night before you go to bed; second, you should replace your contacts as your doctor recommends. There are no special cleaning instructions; it is as simple as taking them out and putting them in!

Myth: It is difficult to take contact lenses in and out

While it may take some practice at first, the insertion and removal of contact lenses is actually quite easy. Once you receive them, your optometrist will teach you how to use them properly, and if you have any problems, he or she will happily assist you. Once you get the hang of it, it is like second nature and could not be more simple or painless.

Myth: You cannot go in the water with them

You can absolutely go in the water while wearing contact lenses. However, you still need to be careful not to get water in your eyes, as that is something you should avoid in general.

Contact lenses are extremely efficient and easy to use. For more information or to schedule an eye exam with Valley Eyecare Center, visit our website.

What You Need To Know About Low Vision

OptometristSummer can be harsh on your eyes, and the intensity of the sun during July can make it even harder to see. People suffering from low vision may have an especially hard time this month, which is why it is important for them to visit their optometrist more frequently. Learn more about the causes and symptoms of this condition.

Understanding Low Vision

Low vision is vision loss that is irreversible and cannot be corrected with glasses, contact lenses, surgery, or medication. People who suffer from this condition may not be able to complete daily activities as well as those with healthy vision.

Causes of Low Vision

Low vision is caused by macular degeneration (also referred to as AMD), which affects the macula, the area of your eye that is controls sharp detail. Over 15 million people over 50 years old have contracted low vision due to aging, but other factors such as cataracts, glaucoma, and diabetic retinopathy can also cause low vision. If a person has suffered from optic nerve damage, he or she could be born with low vision. It is important to be aware of low vision, as you may suffer from it as you get older, or you may know someone with this problem. Make sure to contact your optometrist if you are not able to see clearly with the aid of glasses or contact lenses.

How to Tell if You Have Low Vision

Contact your optometrist for a low-vision exam to determine if you have the condition. This examination checks your regular eyes’ daily functions and activities. Make sure to have a yearly exam to ensure that you do not wait too long to detect any signs of future or current eye problems. Set up an appointment with your optometrist to get more reliable information on low vision and how to prevent it.

For more information about low vision or to schedule an eye exam with one of our optometrists, visit our website.

Understand Pre-Cataracts

CataractsCataracts are one of the most common factors in the erosion of our eye health. This condition leads to the clouding of the eye’s natural lens, which lies beneath the iris and the pupil. Signs of cataracts usually occur around the age of 40, and the risk of getting them only increases as you get older. If you’re concerned about cataracts, here are a few symptoms to look out for in order to catch this condition in its early stages.

Symptoms

The following symptoms indicate that your eye may have a cataract:

  • Cloudy, fuzzy, foggy, or film vision
  • Double vision
  • Glare from direct contact with lights
  • Difficulty driving at night due to glare from headlights
  • Frequent changes in eyeglass prescription

If you find yourself suffering from any of these symptoms, be sure to talk to your optometrist and find out ways to treat a possible cataract.

Prevention

Because there is no particular known cause of cataracts, there is not an exact method of preventing them. There are a few steps you can take, however, to ensure that your eyes are in good health. Before the age of 50, you should be getting your eyes checked once every two years. Once you turn 50 years old, though, you should get your eyes checked annually.

Risk Factors

While age is the leading cause of cataracts, there are a few other factors that lead to its development. Below are some factors that may be helpful in early detection.

  • A family history of cataracts
  • Diabetes
  • Ionizing radiation exposure
  • The use of statins
  • Long-term exposure to bright sunlight
  • Long-term use of corticosteroids
  • Previous eye inflammation
  • Exposure to lead

Always make sure to take the proper steps to ensure that your eyes are in good health. If you recognize any symptoms of pre-cataracts, schedule an appointment today for an eye exam by calling 602-955-2700 or by visiting our website.

Summer Eye Care

Eye_CareSummer is a great time for family vacations, road trips, and cooling off by the pool. While you may have added sunscreen to your everyday routine during the hottest months of the year, you also need to remember to protect your eyes. Follow these eye care tips to keep your eyes healthy all summer long.

Sunglasses

In Arizona, sunglasses are staple accessories throughout the year, but do you own the right pair? The American Academy of Ophthalmology recommends wearing sunglasses with 100% UV protection. These types of lenses block both UV-A and UV-B rays from the sun, which can cataracts or temporary vision loss.

UV-blocking contacts and cloud covers do not completely protect your eyes, which is why our optometrists recommend that you invest in sunglasses, as they are a great defense against the sun’s radiation.

Goggles

If you’re making a dive into the pool, you should protect your eyes from damaging chemicals, especially chlorine. Swimming without goggles can cause redness because the blood vessels in your eyes become dilated. This can cause your vision to become blurry and foggy after an extended period of time in the pool. Also, although saltwater pools do not contain as many eye-damaging chemicals, chlorine tablets are often used to clean them, so goggles should be worn in any pool you swim in this summer.

Avoid Dust Storms

With monsoon season around the corner, it’s important to ensure proper eye care. We recommend that you avoid going outside if there is a monsoon, as dust can land in your eyes. If you do get debris in your eyes, make sure to flush your eyes by rinsing them with water as soon as you can. This will get rid of any irritants that could cause infection or watery eyes.

Whether you’re outside for one minute or one hour, proper eye care is a must.  For more information about eye care or to schedule an appointment with Valley Eyecare Center, call (602) 242-6888 or visit our website.

Eye Health Starts with What You Eat!

Eye HealthWe all know that vitamins are good for us; however, taking daily supplements isn’t enough to keep our bodies completely healthy. Eating right is crucial to our overall well-being, but what many people don’t know is that certain foods can also promote great eye health. In observance of National Fruits and Vegetables Month, we have compiled a list of vitamins below that are beneficial for your eyes and how to add them to your diet.

Vitamin A

Vitamin A protects the surface of your eye and can also decrease your risk of getting macular degeneration, an age-related eye disease. This helpful vitamin is found in carrots, sweet potatoes, spinach, and kale and can also help your immune system, so it is important not only for your eye health but also for your overall health.

Vitamin C

Vitamin C is great for your eyes and your immune system. It strengthens your retina and can help reduce the risk of cataracts after long-term use. Since we cannot produce vitamin C ourselves, it is important that we get enough of it in our diet. Vitamin C is prevalent in oranges, grapefruit, cantaloupe, and strawberries.

Vitamin E

Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant and can help in preventing cataracts. Make sure to add almonds, sunflower seeds, hazelnuts, and avocados to your diet, as they are all great sources of vitamin E.

Zinc

Did you know that zinc can help you to see better at night, as well as reduce your risk of vision loss? Zinc ensures that both vitamins A and E, which are also great for eye health, work properly. You can find zinc in beef, lobster, and yogurt.

The key to great eye health is in the refrigerator! By including these foods in your diet, you can support your overall health all season long. For more information on eye health and how to improve your diet, schedule an appointment with Valley Eyecare Center.