How to Properly Care for Your Eyeglasses

eyeglass-careWhether you’re new to wearing glasses or have been wearing them for years, it is important to make sure that you are following the proper eyeglass care procedures. Learn the do’s and don’ts of caring for your glasses.

Eyeglass Care Tips

Eyeglass Care Do’s:

  • Protect your glasses by storing them in a case
  • Use both hands to take off your glasses so that the frames do not get misaligned
  • Use a soft, non-abrasive cloth when cleaning
  • Take your glasses off if you plan to take a nap
  • Take your glasses off when you use hair spray or perfume
  • Wash your hands before touching your lenses
  • Come into our offices at Valley Eyecare Center for regular eye exams to make sure that your prescription is updated
  • Use special eyeglass cleaner

Eyeglass Care Don’ts:

  • Use a paper towel, tissue, cloth, or article of clothing to dry your lenses or wipe dust off of them. This will scratch your lenses
  • Use ammonia or window cleaner to wash your lenses
  • Set your glasses down on their lenses
  • Wear your glasses if you are swimming
  • Buff your scratches out of your glasses by yourself – an expert can help!
  • Spit on your lenses, as this can damage the coating on your lenses
  • Leave your glasses in a hot car or around a hot surface
  • Put your glasses in a purse or bag without a case protecting the glasses

Eyeglass care is an important way to make sure that your vision and health are in their optimal condition. To learn more about taking care of your eyeglasses, or to schedule an appointment at Valley Eyecare Center, call (602) 955-2700, or visit our website.

How Blue Light Affects Your Vision

We all know that looking at a computer screen all day has a poor effect on our vision, but why is it that blue light protection is so important for our eyes? Learn more about blue light syndrome and how to start protecting your eyes.

Artificial blue light can keep you awake at night—Artificial blue light, such as those in laptops, phones, blue-light-visionand television screens, can send signals to your body that it’s time to stay awake. This can make it harder to fall asleep quickly, and if you use your phone or computer right before bed, you may disrupt your sleep schedule.

Blue light can cause eye strain—Working on screens can cause your eyes to become strained, and this can lead to dry eye. If you experience headaches while looking at your phone of laptop, make sure to practice the 20-20-20 rule: for every 20 minutes you spend looking at a screen, spend 20 seconds focusing on something 20 feet away. Because blue light protection is so important, you can also invest in computer glasses, which help to reduce the blue light that reaches your eyes. Your computer or phone may even have a “night” version that makes the screen look more yellow, which can help your eyes.

Turn off electronics—An hour before bedtime, you should turn off your electronics to make sure that you spend some time without the blue light. This can help to resolve some sleeping issues, and it can also help to make you fall asleep faster and easier.

Invest in blue light protection to ensure that your eyes are in their optimal condition! To learn more about blue light, or to schedule an appointment with an optometrist at Valley Eyecare Center, call (602) 955-2700, or visit our website.

Contact Lens Care and Safety

If you are new to wearing contact lenses, you may have a few questions about how to properly care for your contact lenses. At conta-lens-careValley Eyecare Center, your eyes are our top priority, so we’ll go over the basics of contact lens care this week.

Do’s and Don’ts of Contact Lens Care

Keep the following safety tips in mind when you are caring for your contact lenses.

In your contact lens care routine, please do the following:

  • Wash your hands before touching your eyes or your contact lenses
  • Clean your contact lenses in contact solution
  • Stay hydrated, drinking plenty of water throughout the day and using eye drops when necessary
  • Wear sunglasses in addition to your contact lenses
  • Follow the instructions given to you by your optometrist
  • Replace makeup regularly, especially if it touches your eye
  • Come in for a regular appointment with your optometrist to check your prescription

Please do not do the following:

  • Store your contact lenses in water, especially tap water
  • Sleep with your contact lenses in. Always take them out, even just for a nap! Even if your contact lenses are specifically designed for sleep, it is still a good idea to take them out at night.
  • Reuse old contact solution, as irritants may be in the old solution
  • Put your contacts in if they are inside-out. Your contacts should look like a U, not a V
  • Put your contact lenses in after applying makeup—it’s always safest to put the lenses in before you apply your eye makeup!

Keeping up with your contact lens care routine is important! To learn more about caring for your eyes and contacts, or to schedule an appointment with an optometrist at Valley Eyecare Center, call (602) 955-2700, or visit our website.

Eye Care is Important As You Age – Understanding How Your Vision Changes as You Age

Many things change as we age, and your vision is one of the things that can change from year to year, and it can also change significantly as you age. Your eye care is even more important as you age, so make sure to keep up with your eye care routine!eye-care

Eye Care as You Age

Age-related eye diseases may occur—As you age, you may be at a higher risk for certain age-related eye diseases, such as macular degeneration or glaucoma. These two diseases are usually caught first by an optometrist, so it is important that you make your regular appointments and eat a healthy diet to promote optimal vision.

Cataracts happen most often once you’re past 40 years old—Cataracts rarely affect those under 40, and they most frequently affect those over 40. Cataracts, however, are considered a normal aging change, so if you have had a cataract, know that you are not alone. About half of all 65-year-old Americans have had cataracts.

You may have a hard time focusing on things that are up close—This common problem happens to almost everyone over the age of 40. Known as presbyopia, this vision change affects your near-sighted vision so that you may have to hold things a little farther away from you to focus on them. You may notice that you need reading glasses, but have no fear; this is a natural process of aging.

Reduced pupil size—As you age, the muscles that control the size of your pupil lose some of their strength. This may cause your pupil to become smaller and perhaps less responsive to changes in ambient lighting.

Your eyesight can change every year, so making annual appointments with your optometrist is important! To learn more about age-related changes in your vision, or to book an appointment with a specialist at Valley Eyecare Center, call (602) 955-2700, or visit our website.


Optometrists Indicate that Eye Color Affect Your Vision

Although it may not seem as if it has an effect on your vision, your eye color can impact the way you see and your chances of developing certain eye-related problems. Optometrists have found that the differences between eye colors play more of a role in your vision than you might think.

Eye Color and Your Vision

Light eyes may be more sensitive—The most well-known way for your eye color to affect your vision is that if you have light eyes, you may be more sensitive to the sun. Having less pigment in your eyes may not protect them as much from the damaging rays of the sun, and optometrists have found that you may be at a greater risk for macular degeneration later in life.

Your eye color may impact your reaction times—A study has found that dark-eyed people perform better in “reactive” tasks and sports. Therefore, dark-eyed people may be better at hitting a ball or playing a defensive role in a game. Light-eyed people were found to have performed better in self-paced tasks, such as golfing or bowling.

Your eye color may change over time—Many children are born with blue eyes that change to brown or green eyes later in life. Optometrists have also found that even adults can notice slight changes in the hues of their irises as they age. This is a natural process that about 15% of Caucasians will experience. However, if your eye color changes significantly and rapidly, you should make an appointment with an optometrist.

Your eye color can affect your vision, even if it is just a slight change. To learn more about your eye color and its effect on your vision, or to schedule an appointment with an optometrist at Valley Eyecare Center, call (602) 955-2700, or contact us online.

What is Low Vision?

visionFebruary is AMD/Low Vision Awareness Month! Although the term in itself may be confusing, we’ll explain everything there is to know about low vision and the ways you can prevent low vision from happening to you.

Low Vision Explained

What is low vision? Low vision is a term that signifies that your vision has been impaired to the point that eyeglasses, contact lenses, or Lasik eye surgery would not completely resolve the issue. Low vision can also include tunnel vision, blind spots, and legal blindness.

What causes low vision? The most common cause of low vision is an eye disease. For example, cataracts can cause blurry or hazy vision, and macular degeneration may cause your vision to be partially obscured. Eye injuries may also cause low vision if you’ve suffered from a significant eye injury in the past.

What can be done about low vision? Of course, your first step should be to come into our offices at Valley Eyecare Center for an eye exam to make sure that you, in fact, have low vision. From there, if your vision cannot be corrected with eyeglasses or contact lenses, we will check to see if you have certain eye diseases or injuries.

Is it possible to prevent certain eye diseases that cause low vision? While some eye diseases are hereditary, you can develop others throughout your life. Make sure to eat a balanced diet with plenty of fruits and vegetables to ensure that you receive the proper vitamins and minerals in your food. Vitamin A is especially crucial for your eye health. Also, make sure to go to regular eye exams so that your optometrist can check on the status of your eyes.

Schedule an eye exam today to check on the status of your vision! To learn more about low vision, or to book an appointment at Valley Eyecare Center, call (602) 955-2700, or visit our website.

What Is UV Protection and Why Do I Need It?

We’ve all heard about the importance of UV protection with sunglasses and our skin, but what is it, and why do we actually need to take it into account? These four tips will help you to understand what UV is and how to avoid it.

Sunglasses and UV Protection

Optometry Understanding UV radiation and why you need protection—UV stands for ultraviolet, and it is the radiation from the sun that can damage not only your eyelids or cornea but also your skin if it is exposed to the sun for too long. UV rays come in two forms, UVA and UVB, and they can also contribute to the development of cataracts or growths on the eye.

Protect your eyes with UV-blocking sunglasses—You should look for sunglasses that block 99% to 100% of both UVA and UVB rays in order to keep your eyes safe from the potential damage UV would cause. It is important to note that the color of the lenses does not indicate its level of UV protection. You must get sunglasses that specify that they protect your eyes from UV rays.

Have multiple pairs of sunglasses—In Arizona, it’s almost always sunny, even in the winter! It is best to never be without your sunglasses, so we recommend having multiple pairs. You can have a pair at home, at the office, and in your car.

Prescription UV-blocking sunglasses are available—If you want the UV protection of sunglasses without losing your vision, come into Valley Eyecare Center for prescription sunglasses! We’ll help you to find the perfect style for you!

Sunglasses are an important aspect of keeping your eyes safe and healthy! To learn more about UV protection, or to schedule an eye exam with one of our optometrists at Valley Eyecare Center, call (602) 955-2700, or visit our website.

What is Vision Correction?

eye-careIf you have a visual impairment, you may be considering any of the following eye care options: eyeglasses, contact lenses, or Lasik eye surgery. Each of these options is quite different, and knowing which one is right for you is crucial.

Which Eye Care Solution Is Best for You?

Eyeglasses—Perhaps the most obvious way to see more clearly is to get glasses. Most people can easily wear glasses, and they correct your vision easily. They are often less expensive than contact lenses since contacts need to be replaced every day, and glasses are also less expensive than Lasik eye surgery. Glasses can also protect your eyes from potential injuries. However, glasses can be broken or lost if you take them off, and they may be uncomfortable or inconvenient in some cases.

Contact lenses—Like eyeglasses, contact lenses are a great eye care option to correct your vision, and there are many pros and cons of wearing contacts. Many contact lens wearers love that the lenses conform to the eye, providing you with infinite vision that may not be as attainable with glasses. Contacts can also make you look as if you don’t have a visual impairment, as they are less obvious than glasses. Contacts also do not fog up and are not affected by weather conditions, unlike glasses. However, some people may find that it is difficult to put contacts into their eyes, and contact lenses may also dry out your eye if you wear them too long.

Lasik eye surgery—The last eye care option is Lasik eye surgery, which involves a laser eye surgery to correct your vision. Results are immediate and long-lasting, and you do not have to worry about glasses or contact lenses. Your vision will be greatly improved, as recipients of the surgery regain 20/20 vision. However, this option can often be expensive, and you must remain awake during the surgery so that your eyes can be open for the laser.

Your eye care is important! Find out which vision corrector is right for you by coming in for an eye exam with one of our optometrists at Valley Eyecare Center. Call (602) 955-2700 or visit our website to learn more information.

Optometrists Care About Your Health

optometristIt’s flu season again, and the optometrists at Valley Eyecare Center want to make sure that you stay healthy throughout the season! Since your overall health affects your eye health, make sure to follow these tips to ensure that you stay healthy throughout the winter!

Health Tips from an Optometrist

Wash your hands frequently—One of the most common ways to spread the flu is through contact, so if you have come into contact with anyone who is sick or has had the flu, you should make sure to wash your hands as soon as you can.

Get plenty of rest—Your body is less susceptible to getting ill when you have had a good night’s rest. Optometrists also recommend getting plenty of sleep because your eyes will be more hydrated when you have a good sleep schedule and get plenty of sleep.

Eat right—Eating right is not just about eating a balanced diet but also making sure that you are getting enough vitamins. Foods that are rich in vitamin C and E can help to boost your immunity system, so if you’re concerned about catching the flu, make sure to eat more sunflower seeds, almonds, oranges, or broccoli, as these contain large amounts of either vitamin E or C.

Exercise often—Exercise is also important to boost your immunity system. Exercise can also be found to reduce stress, which allows your body to relax and can also lead to better health. We recommend exercising several times per week to ensure that your body is in its optimal condition.

Drink plenty of water—Although it may be difficult to get the recommend eight glasses of water per day, it is important that you work yourself up to this amount. Water is extremely important to many of your bodily functions.

Stay healthy this flu season! To learn more about how to maintain your optimal health, or to schedule an appointment with an optometrist at Valley Eyecare Center, call (602) 955-2700, or visit our website.

Prevent Dry Eye this Winter

The humidity is always lower in the winter, so it’s easy to find that your skin has become dry. Just like your skin, your eyes can dry out and so might suffer from dry eye more easily in the winter than in other months.

Solving Dry Eye

Dry-EyesRecognize the symptoms—Suffering from blurry eyes after reading something on the computer, feeling as if you have something gritty in your eyes, or having excessively red eyes can all be signs of dry eye.

Eat a healthy diet—Foods that are rich in vitamins A, C, and E are all great for your eyes. Omega-3 fatty acids, which are most often found in oily fish like salmon, can also increase the moisture in your eyes. Also, make sure to drink plenty of water to make sure that your eyes are hydrated.

Wear sunglasses—Sunglasses not only protect your eyes from the damaging rays of the sun but also protect your eyes from the wind, which can dry out your eyes. Make sure to pack sunglasses wherever you go!

Avoid wearing contacts all day—If you regularly wear contacts, they may cause dry eye if you’ve been wearing them too much during the week or during the day. If your eyes feel dry, try switching to regular eyeglasses for a while to see if this helps your eyes.

Invest in eye drops—Either over-the-counter eye drops or prescription eye drops can help to hydrate your eyes if they have been feeling dry or itchy.

Look away from screens—Spending a lot of time in front of the computer can cause dry eye. Make sure to follow the 20-20-20 rule: for every 20 minutes you spend looking at a screen, focus on something 20 feet away for 20 seconds.

Preventing dry eye is simple! To learn more about our dry eye treatments, or to schedule an appointment with an optometrist at Valley Eyecare Center, call (602) 955-2700, or visit our website.