Visionary Eye Center

It’s August, and that means it’s National Children’s Vision Month! Back-to-school season is also here, and there couldn’t be a better time than before your child returns to the classroom to take them to the eye doctor. One out of four school-age children suffer from some type of uncorrected vision problem, which can seriously impair their success in the classroom. Children are not always able to recognize by themselves that blurry vision or struggling to see near or far is actually a concern.  And vision problems aren’t always issues with blurry vision, but rather eye alignment and focusing issues that lead to struggles in school, despite the fact they can see the classroom board clearly.

School Eye Screenings Designated for Students

A routine school eye screening by an optometrist is necessary to detect vision problems and maintain overall optical health. You may have believed a school or pediatrician vision screening is enough. These are brief exams that evaluate visual acuity, the ability to read small letters or see a picture on a chart.  These screenings are not comprehensive and can’t evaluate the way your child’s eyes work while reading or doing school work, nor can they adequately evaluate your child’s eye health.  This means many vision problems aren’t detected, contributing to your child struggling in their academics or athletics.

reno pediatric optometrist

According to the American Academy of Ophthalmology, it’s recommended that children receive an eye evaluation once before the age of 3, and at least every one to two years until the age of 19. Preschoolers should see a pediatric optometrist to ensure their eyes are aligned and focusing properly to address developing issues and halt progress down the road. During adolescence, a person’s eyesight can change rapidly and often, especially impacted by puberty, so they should continue to receive annual checkups. Of added importance, detecting myopia early is key as we now have FDA-approved technologies like the MiSight lens to slow the progression of near-sightedness or myopia.  So we can now actually do something about your child’s prescription getting worse every year using myopia control techniques.

Family Eye Care to Help With Your School Eye Screenings

Scheduling an eye exam with your child’s optometrist before school begins will ensure they start the school year with the best overall vision to succeed! It eliminates the concern that vision or eye health could be interfering with your child achieving their highest academic potential. Proper eyesight can also prevent headaches, fatigue, and lack of focus in the classroom. You should also have your child’s lens prescription checked and kept up-to-date, especially if they are active in team sports or have a new classroom seat each year. Being proactive in ensuring your child regularly visits an optometrist is essential. After all, they own their eyes for life!

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If you are a driver who also wears glasses, you’ve probably struggled to decide between which pair of glasses to put on in the car. Either way, you’re hindering your vision one way or the other. By not wearing your eyeglasses, you likely won’t be able to see near or far away depending on your eye condition. But not wearing sunglasses could mean being blinded by the harsh UV rays of the sun. The best option is to get yourself a pair of prescription sunglasses, that way you can achieve optimal vision. 

When it comes to prescription sunglasses, there are many varying types to choose from. One of our favorites is the polarized sunglass lens that provides added protection to your eyes in harsh sunlight. Learn more about prescription sunglasses and polarized lenses below.

The Importance of Protecting Your Eyes with Prescription Sunglasses

Many patients are unaware of just how damaging UV rays can be on their eyes and do very little to protect them from mild or harsh sunlight. Even if there is cloud coverage in the sky, UV rays can still negatively affect your eyes. UV-A rays typically lead to problems with central vision and the macula which is part of the retina. UV-B rays are also damaging, mostly affecting the cornea and lens. Extended exposure to these harmful rays can lead to more serious eye conditions including:

Are prescription sunglasses worth the purchase? 

Though many people are hesitant to spend the money on purchasing a second pair of glasses by buying prescription sunglasses, those who have are sure glad they did. Prescription sunglasses provide much-needed sight assistance even in high-light situations. When you’re driving down the street or taking your dog for a walk and the sun is glaring in your eyes, your regular prescription glasses will do very little to help you see. Likewise, wearing sunglasses with no prescription leaves you with very little vision. Prescription sunglasses, however, block out the sun while providing the same sight assistance as your glasses. 

Prescription sunglasses can also help with light sensitivity, glare-related headaches, and regular eye strain from squinting in the sun.  And if you’re worried about crow's feet, not squinting all the time from either harsh sunlight or blurry vision can help reduce those lines around your eyes. 

What are polarized sunglasses?

First, it is important to note that not all sunglasses are polarized. While all sunglasses are designed to limit UV rays from penetrating through the lenses and limit glare, some are much more effective than others. 

To understand how polarized sunglasses work, you need to know how light is reflected. Most sunlight that reaches our eyes is dispersed and scattered due to the fact that it often reflects off of uneven surfaces such as trees and roads. However, when sunlight is reflected from a smooth, shiny surface like the hood of a car, Lake Tahoe or a phone screen, the light is reflected in just one direction. The dispersed light is much less bothersome and damaging, while light that is directly reflecting into your eyes is more troublesome. 

Polarized sunglasses are manufactured in a unique way that creates a different pattern within the lens that is able to block out more light than typical prescription sunglasses. A special film is laminated in between the lens surfaces in a vertical pattern. This helps block light and eliminate polarized glare entirely.  

Benefits of Prescription Sunglasses and Polarized Lenses

There are many advantages to wearing prescription sunglasses, especially with polarized lenses. Polarized lenses provide clearer vision in bright light, increases contrast, offer minimal color distortion, and reduces glare, reflection, and eye strain. And, the polarization is built directly into the lens, leaving a seamless finish for flawless vision. For anyone who spends time outdoors, polarized lenses will provide the best UV protection for your eyes.  

Prescription Sunglasses from Visionary Eye Center

When it comes to eye protection, eyeglasses and sunglasses are essential. With prescription sunglasses, you never have to worry about choosing which pair of glasses to put on again. 

Visionary Eye Center is your home for custom vision solutions, and we take pride in offering top-tier care for each patient. We want our patients and community to be well informed to make the best health decisions for you and your family. Please don’t hesitate to contact us with any general inquiries or concerns, or schedule an appointment for an eye exam!

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Just like with the rest of your body, age can have drastic effects on your eyesight. One of the most common age-related eye conditions out there is cataracts. You may be asking yourself, “what are cataracts?” and you’re not alone. Though many people have heard of cataracts, they’re less informed about the types, symptoms, and treatment of them. Considering how common cataracts are, it’s likely that you or a loved one may be affected by the eye condition if you don’t take the proper precautions. Take a look below to learn all you need to know about cataracts and see what you can do to protect yourself from developing this condition.

What Are Cataracts?

Cataracts are described as clouding of a normally clear eye lens. They affect the natural lens of your eye which leads to impaired vision and other sight complications. Typically, cataracts affect older patients over the age of 60 and are most noticeable in dim lighting. Fortunately, cataracts do form slowly and can be treated. 

Though the cause of cataracts has not yet been fully determined, it’s understood that they form when proteins build up in the lens, making it appear cloudy. The cloudiness prevents light from passing through the lens clearly resulting in vision impairment. There may be several causes of cataracts, but generally, age, exposure to sunlight, and eye trauma are the biggest contributors.

Symptoms of Cataracts

The main symptom of cataracts is the inability to see clearly. Cataracts cause light to be blocked by the natural lens impairing your vision. Other signs and symptoms of cataracts include:

Types of Cataracts

There are several types of cataracts including cortical, posterior subcapsular, and nuclear sclerotic cataracts. 

Nuclear sclerotic cataracts are the most common and it’s very typical for people to develop them in their late age. This type of cataract forms in the center of the lens also called the nucleus. You may notice your vision improve for a brief amount of time when developing nuclear sclerotic cataracts but these effects do not last. Over time, your lens will begin to harden and become yellow or brown in color. It makes seeing small details almost impossible, dulls colors, and may result in seeing halos forming around objects.  

Cortical cataracts are common in diabetes patients. These cataracts develop opposite from the nucleus, starting at the outer layer of the eye rather than the center. As it progresses, it creates noticeable spokes that lead from the outside in. A unique symptom of this type of cataract is experiencing changes in both contrast and depth perception. 

Posterior Subcapsular cataracts develop much quicker than other types of cataracts, typically over months rather than years. Posterior cataracts start at the back of the lens and are most common in diabetes patients or those with extreme nearsightedness. Steroid use can also increase the risk of developing posterior subcapsular cataracts. With posterior subcapsular cataracts, you will first notice changes in your night vision and may also notice more difficulty reading.

How Are Cataracts Treated?myopia control

The good news is that cataracts are easily treatable by medical and eye professionals. If you catch the condition early enough, a stronger prescription lens can improve your vision for some time. Typically, increasing your light source will also help vision in patients with cataracts, so be sure to add light to your home and use your new prescription glasses or contact lenses. 

If these no longer work for you, then cataract surgery is going to be necessary. Cataract surgery is the only way to remove the cataract and fully treat it. There are several kinds of operations for cataracts, but they all require your surgeon to take out the cloudy lens and replace it with an artificial one. The surgery usually takes about 15 to 20 minutes, and you don't need to stay overnight in a hospital. If you have cataracts in both eyes, your doctor will wait until your first eye heals before they perform surgery on the second. More than 95% of people who have this done say they can see better afterward.

Preventing Cataracts

While there is no surefire way to prevent the onset of cataracts, there are some precautions you can take to limit your risk of developing cataracts. With risk factors such as increasing age and previous trauma or injury, there’s little you can do to keep eye problems from worsening. However, other risk factors can affect this as well. Some of them include:

In order to prevent cataracts from forming, try making some life changes such as:

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Cataracts are the leading cause of blindness worldwide, though in the United States access to cataract surgery is readily available, so most Americans, fortunately, do not need to live with vision impairment from cataracts for very long. Should your condition require more advanced medical care, we work with many of the area's best specialty surgeons to co-manage any problems you may develop.

If you’re struggling with complications caused by cataracts or are just starting to develop cataracts, contact the Visionary Eye Center today! Here, we strive for customized eye care solutions for our Reno-Sparks patients and are eager to help you gain back control of your vision.

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Vision problems can be a huge distraction in your daily life, making even casual tasks such as driving extremely difficult. One common vision problem that patients may experience is night blindness. You may be asking yourself, "what is night blindness?" and you're not alone. Someone with night blindness will have difficulty seeing in dark environments, which is especially noticeable when driving at night. Night blindness can be dangerous in some situations, so it’s critical that you get the help you need to alleviate your symptoms and get your eye health back on track. 

For more information about night blindness, read the article below or contact our Reno optometrists today. 

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what is night blindnessWhat is night blindness?

Night blindness, professionally known as nyctalopia, affects your ability to see at night or in poor lighting conditions. Although many people believe night blindness is an eye condition/disease all of its own, this actually isn’t true. Night blindness is the result of an underlying health issue such as cataracts, diabetes, or myopia. It’s also important to note that night blindness does not result in actual blindness but does lead to impaired vision in dark environments. 

Night blindness often presents itself when transitioning from a well-lit area to a dark, poorly-lit environment. Our eyes naturally adjust and adapt to changes in light, but those with nyctalopia are typically unable to do this, resulting in poor visibility. If you have difficulty driving at night due to lousy vision or struggle to see in dark restaurants, movie theaters, etc., then you likely suffer from night blindness. However, many types of night blindness are treatable and symptoms often subside once the underlying issue has been resolved.   

What causes night blindness?

There are several possible causes of night blindness including:

night blindnessSymptoms:

The most common symptom of night blindness is experiencing poor vision in dimly lit or dark environments. However, this isn’t the only symptom that may present itself in those with nyctalopia. Other symptoms include:

How is night blindness treated?

Not all forms of night blindness can be treated, but a majority of them can be managed or remedied in some way. The treatment for your night blindness will vary depending on the cause of your condition. For example, if your night blindness is caused by myopia or nearsightedness, then new glasses or contact lens prescription may be recommended to alleviate your symptoms. And if your night blindness is caused by cataracts, surgery may be the only option for relief. 

Other night blindness treatments may include a change in glaucoma medication or a visit with a retinal specialist. To determine your best course of action, it’s essential to visit your Reno eye doctor. They’ll be able to diagnose the cause of your night blindness and will provide the best treatment plan based specifically on your needs. 

night blindnessSee how you can prevent night blindness

Although some night blindness may be the result of a genetic disposition, other forms of nyctalopia may be prevented with some simple lifestyle changes. Try making these easy changes in your everyday life to help prevent the onset of night blindness:

Visit Your Reno Optometrist Today

Here, at the Visionary Eye Center, we strive for customized eye care solutions for all of our patients in the Reno-Sparks area. As each patients’ needs are unique, your treatment plan should be unique to you as well. We’ll work with you to determine the underlying cause of your night blindness to develop a solution that addresses your symptoms and treats your vision problems. 

Our office uses the latest diagnostic technology and treatment solutions so you can receive cutting-edge options and not the bulk products that are found in other optometrists’ offices. Contact us today to get started with your personalized eye treatment. We look forward to meeting you!

Children and infants aren’t exempt from experiencing vision problems. Like adults, children can suffer from a variety of eye conditions including amblyopia, strabismus, and refractive errors such as nearsightedness and farsightedness. Genetic diseases such as glaucoma and cataracts may also affect children at a very young age. Thankfully, with regular vision checks, your child’s eyesight difficulties can be detected and treated early on. Start by learning the signs of vision problems in babies and children so you and your pediatrician can refer to an optometrist and rectify the situation before it gets out of control. 

Myopia Treatment Reno

Common Ages to Have Your Child’s Vision Examined 

Eye exams should be done by your optometrist regularly. Unfortunately, pediatrician screenings aren’t designed to detect the subtle signs of early disease or vision problems. So, just like it is important to have your child see the dentist early, so too is it important to bring your child to an eye care professional at the following ages even if nothing seems wrong:

All children who wear glasses should have their vision checked yearly at their annual checkups. At these appointments, it will be determined how the vision problems are progressing and new glasses or contact lenses will be prescribed if necessary. 

How to Spot Eye Problems in Your Child

Vision problems may appear at any point in a child’s life. Many of the signs of vision problems in babies and children will be easy to spot, but some may go unnoticed if not closely monitored. If you notice any of the following signs or symptoms in your child, be sure to connect with your optometrist to see if further action should be taken:

Some vision problems may have no symptoms at all. Commonly, amblyopia (lazy eye) provides no obvious warning signs, which is why it’s so important to have your child’s eyes checked regularly. Tests can be done to determine if an eye condition is present or developing. Catching these signs early on is critical as it can help prevent your child from suffering chronic vision problems. 

When to Seek Help from a Reno Optometrist

Visit The Visionary Eye Center

If you are concerned about your child’s eye health, or if you’re still wondering what are the warning signs of vision problems in babies and children, don’t hesitate to schedule them an appointment with an optometrist. Here at the Visionary Eye Center, we are equipped to offer pediatric eye care with the best options, treatment, and technology available. 

We have developed techniques and technology specifically for children of all ages. When it comes to your child’s eye health, being proactive is essential. Feel free to contact us with any questions or concerns about your child’s vision, and don’t hesitate to schedule an appointment with us today! Visionary Eye Center is your home for custom vision solutions, and we take pride in offering top-tier care for each patient.

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Many people will experience a migraine from time to time. In fact, an estimated 1 billion people across the world suffer from migraines. However, the headaches and migraines that are associated with vision or cause vision problems, are rarely typical. If you’re prone to migraines and headaches that cause vision impairment or even vision loss, you may be suffering from an ocular migraine. You may be wondering “what is an ocular migraine?” and you’re not alone. They’re often misunderstood or misdiagnosed as a different type of headache or eye condition which leaves many confused about what issue they are being affected by. 

Learn more about what an ocular migraine is below, along with noticeable symptoms, possible treatments, and prevention methods of this eye condition. 

eye symptoms you should never ignoreWhat is an Ocular Migraine?

An ocular migraine is defined as being a rare condition that affects your vision in one eye. This type of migraine is characterized by temporary loss of vision or even blindness in just one eye, not both, and vision typically returns to normal within an hour. These migraines may be painless for some people or may be accompanied by pain from a migraine headache. Though ocular migraines often cause impaired vision in one eye, their effects may differ from patient to patient. 

Ocular migraines are often confused with a much more common condition called migraine aura that usually affects both eyes rather than just one. It has been determined that ocular migraines are most likely caused by reduced blood flow or spasms of blood vessels behind the eye. Changes that occur across the nerve cells in the retina may also lead to an ocular migraine. 

Diagnosing Ocular Migraines

It’s important to note that regular migraine headaches can cause vision problems such as blind spots and flashes of light, which are not related to an ocular migraine. The biggest difference between the two conditions is that an ocular migraine causes vision loss in just one eye, while a regular migraine results in impaired vision in both eyes. When visiting your Reno optometrist, the doctor will first begin ruling out conditions that present similar symptoms to ocular migraines. These may include:

Symptoms of an Ocular Migraine

There are several telling symptoms of an ocular migraine, however, these can sometimes be difficult to determine on your own. Fortunately, a qualified, licensed optometrist can help you better assess your symptoms and provide appropriate care in return. Be sure to observe symptoms such as:

Ocular Migraine Treatment

Because of the transience of this condition, treatment is often not necessary during the time of the occurrence. The vision loss that you experience should subside within an hour, but it is important to take a few precautionary measures to prevent further injury or discomfort during an episode. Once you notice the vision loss, you should stop whatever you’re doing and rest your eyes until your vision appears normal. If your vision problems are accompanied by a headache, take an over-the-counter pain reliever to help alleviate the discomfort. 

Other methods of treatment may include medications or medical devices that are intended to limit or prevent the ocular migraines from happening altogether. Medications that are commonly prescribed to treat epilepsy have proven to be an effective treatment for ocular migraines. These include valproic acid and topiramate. Other medications that may be effective are CGRP inhibitors, blood pressure medicines (such as beta-blockers), and tricyclic antidepressants. 

How to Prevent Ocular Migraines from Developing

Fortunately, there are some simple lifestyle changes you can take to prevent an oncoming ocular migraine that have proven to be quite effective. Like traditional migraines, ocular migraines can be triggered by a number of different factors. To prevent a debilitating ocular migraine from occurring, try to avoid the following to the best of your ability: 

myopia controlVisit Your Reno Optometrist 

Ocular migraines are quite rare, and the symptoms are often caused by other underlying problems. To determine the true source of your complications, be sure to meet with the Reno optometrists at Visionary Eye Center. Their team of dedicated, professional optical specialists will be able to help you with your vision problems and provide effective solutions and care to help you feel better. Connect with the experts at Visionary Eye Center today!

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If you have been blessed with good eyesight it is easy to take your vision for granted, but in reality, your life would change dramatically if something were to happen to your eyesight. Eyes usually don’t need a whole lot of attention, but it’s important to be able to realize if your eyes are trying to tell you something.

However, there is a fine line between harmless eye irritation and serious issues, but how do you know which eye symptoms you should never ignore? Keep reading and we will explore some eye issues you should always take seriously.

eye symptoms you should never ignore reno

Eye Pain

While it is sometimes difficult to assess your own personal eye well-being, one tell-tale sign of serious eye issues is pain. If it comes on suddenly, lasts for a few minutes, and is pretty much unexplainable (i.e. nothing irritated it or caused it pain) then you should never ignore this eye symptom.

Right away, you should get in to see the eye doctor. It may be brief, but this is the way that your eye is telling your mind that something is wrong. It could be nothing, but do you really want to risk your eyesight on that?

Floaters and/or Flashes of Light

If you haven’t ever experienced this before, it can be quite alarming, especially if it is vivid for the first time. Floaters are the little squiggly things that sometimes appear before your eyes, best seen when looking at the blue sky or a white wall.

You may have experienced this before and it is quite normal, but if this is happening frequently or causing delusion or pain you should definitely get it looked at.

If you have floaters and are also experiencing flashes of light along with them, it could be a sign of a retinal tear that could possibly lead to a retinal detachment.

Blurry Vision

Blurry vision can be the effect of a few different eye issues, most notably dry eye. Dry eye occurs when there is simply not enough lubrication of the eye and can cause blurry vision, redness, and itchiness.

eye symptoms you should never ignore

Other factors can also cause blurry vision like smoke, wind, extreme heat or cold, certain medications, diabetes, and pregnancy. The easy solution to blurry vision could be as simple as eye drops, but if this doesn’t help improve the situation then you should see the optometrist.

If your blurry vision suddenly gets more severe, it could be a sign of high pressure in your head and spinal cord or inflammation of your optic nerve.

Double Vision

Double vision can be extremely dangerous if it is present in both eyes. It could be a sign of neurological problems, and you should go directly to the emergency room if you notice double vision in both eyes. This could also be accompanied by slurred speech or pain.

However, if double vision is present in one eye it could be a sign of a corneal issue or retinal issue, and you should schedule an appointment with an optometrist if it is occurring regularly. You definitely do not want to ignore double vision.

Redness

While eye redness can be an effect of many different things including allergies, smoke, and lack of sleep, it can also be a sign of pink eye or conjunctivitis. If your eyes are irritated and red you could just need a few days of eye drops, but if pain, a burning sensation, or blurred vision is present you should consult an eye specialist.

Red eyes can be totally harmless if only happens rarely but could be a sign of serious eye infection if it happens often or you wear contacts regularly.

Droopy Eyelids

Some peoples’ eyelids naturally hang down a bit lower and as you grow older gravity starts to take an effect, but a sudden droop in one or both eyelids could be a sign of stroke, muscle disease, or a nerve problem.

A gradual increase of drooping eyelids is natural, but if this occurs out of nowhere then you should take it seriously and report to the emergency room if any other symptoms accompany this.

Visionary Eye Center Reno, NV

Hopefully, this blog has increased your knowledge about which eye symptoms you should never ignore and also given you some peace of mind. Visionary Eye Center is your home for custom vision solutions, and we take pride in offering top tier care for each patient.

We want our patients and community to be well informed to make the best health decisions for you and your family. Please don’t hesitate to contact us with any general inquiries or concerns, and we look forward to meeting you!

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As a child’s health is the number one priority to parents, surprisingly many are inattentive to the importance of eye health. Eyesight issues can impact a child’s life in every fashion of ordinary life from school to sports and socializing. Children cannot always vocalize exactly what’s wrong, and a lot of times it’s hard for them to even realize.

You may be asking yourself, “Does my child really need glasses?” Healthy eyesight is crucial to a child’s well-being, so in this blog we will explore some of the most common signs to tell if your child really needs glasses or not. 

Go in for frequent checkups

Before we get into signs of possible eye issues, the most important thing is to make sure your child goes in for frequent checkups. Oftentimes, kids are only taken in occasionally if there is nothing wrong the first time, but doctors recommend children should be seeing an eye doctor at least once a year. 

Many schools perform a regular vision screening, but miss 75% of children with vision problems.  The screening performed by your pediatrician using a picture chart tacked to the wall is similarly inadequate.  If your child fails a school or pediatrician vision screening make sure to bring them in immediately for a comprehensive eye exam. Eye exams by an optometrist are really the only foolproof way for a true diagnosis, and it often these vision issues will continue to worsen if you don’t stay proactive about the situation. 

7 signs your child may need glasses

1) Squinting

Squinting compensates for your eyes’ inability to clearly see an object by reducing misfocused light. If you notice your child has a tendency to squint while looking at far away objects (nearsightedness) or squinting while looking at close up objects (farsightedness), it may be time for a checkup.

2) Tilting of the head

If you see your child continuously tilting their head, especially if you notice they are attempting to strain their vision, it could be an attempt to increase vision clarity by changing their sight angle. This could be a sign that their eyes are misaligned or an imbalance of the eye muscles.

3) Sitting too close

It could seem like a natural child thing to do to sit too close to the TV or hold devices or books close up to their face, but it could be a sign of nearsightedness or myopia development. Nearsightedness affects your vision where one can see more clearly when the object is closer, and it is one of the most common vision problems for children around the world.

4) Struggling in school

If you notice your child is struggling in school or with school work, it could be a number of different things which makes it so much more important to stay informed about your child's performance in school. For a young child, school is very stimulating, and they are forced to adapt quickly, including their eyes. Vision problems can lead to a lack of focus or motivation for school work.

5) Headaches, migraines, nausea or eye pain

If your child is suffering from any of these symptoms it could be a number of different things, so just remember to listen to your children and continue to stay proactive. These symptoms could be a result of strain from the extra effort that your child must put forth if they are experiencing vision problems. This tension may cause frequent headaches or eye pain, or in more severe cases migraines and nausea could be present.

6) Covering one eye

Similar to tilting the head, covering one eye while reading, watching TV or any eye strain, can be an attempt to compensate for double vision. It could also be a sign of sensitivity to bright light (exotropia) or lazy eye (amblyopia).

7) Excessive eye rubbing

Eye rubbing is a pretty natural tendency, but it is important to monitor your child’s habits. If they are rubbing their eyes on a regular basis or during strenuous eye activity like reading or watching TV, it could be a sign of digital eye strain, dry eye or allergic conjunctivitis.

What to do if your child is experiencing eye problems— The Visionary Eye Center

If you are concerned about your child’s eye health, or if you’re still asking yourself, “Does my child really need glasses?” you should immediately schedule them an appointment with an optometrist. Here at the Visionary Eye Center we are equipped to offer pediatric eye care with the best options, treatment and technology. 

We have developed techniques and technology specifically designed for children where many other optometrists are not capable of seeing very young children. Feel free to contact us with any questions or concerns about your child’s vision, and don’t hesitate to schedule an appointment today!

As your eye continuously changes, your brain adapts and makes compromises with these changes, making it hard to tell if your vision is deteriorating. Based on many factors—including age, health, family medical history and personal medical history—the importance of yearly eye exams differs, but we urge you to visit an optometrist at least once a year.

As your eyes are the window to your soul, they are also the window to your overall well-being where other health issues come to light. For this blog, we will explore the importance of yearly eye exams, as well as other factors surrounding the topic. 

Why should I get my eyes examined once a year?

Prevention: Even if you are healthy—or you think you are healthy—prevention is the key to lasting eyesight. Vision impairment can be avoided or prevented if you are able to catch signs early on. Especially with rising numbers of Digital Eye Strain from increasing screen time from work and school; it’s more important now than ever to get in to see your eye doctor.

Your vision changes over time: Vision changes occur naturally, but it’s nothing to be afraid of. However, these changes can and will affect your vision on a daily basis, and only an optometrist will be able to tell you exactly how these changes are affecting your vision. If these changes aren’t monitored or taken care of, you could be facing irreparable damage.

In addition, it’s especially important to visit an eye doctor yearly if you already wear glasses or contacts. You could need adjustments after a period of time, and your prescription could change from your previous visit. An out-of-date prescription poses just as much of a threat as non-wearers letting their eyesight deteriorate. 

Your eyes show other health issues: As mentioned formerly, your eyes tell a tremendous amount about your overall health. Your eyes can show signs of diabetes, brain tumors, high cholesterol and high blood pressure by looking at blood vessels, arteries and cranial nerves while your eyes are dilated. These signs will show in your eyes before visible symptoms anywhere else. 

Symptomless eye diseases: There are common eye diseases that show no or limited symptoms until the effects are truly upon you and create irreversible damage. By looking at the optic nerve and the condition of the cornea an optometrist can see signs of eye diseases like glaucoma, dry eye and anterior segment diseases.

What to expect at an eye exam

For a thorough routine eye exam one should expect the following:

Visionary Eye Center’s Digital Lifestyle Exam

With our cutting edge diagnostic technology, Visionary Eye Center is offering a Digital Lifestyle Exam that’s perfect for all ages! With this revolutionary eye exam you can spend more time talking face to face with an optometrist on a plan for your eyes rather than staring through a machine.

With this eye exam you can expect:

You can check out everything it has to offer here!

Schedule your appointment today!

Here, at the Visionary Eye Center, we strive for customized eye care solutions for our Reno-Sparks patients. As each patients’ needs are unique, our treatment should be as unique as you.

Our independence allows us the flexibility to use the latest technology, so you can receive cutting edge options and not bulk products that are found everywhere. Contact us today to get started with your personalized eye treatment today. We look forward to meeting you!

What Is Dry Eye?

Dry eye or “dry eye syndrome” or “dry eye disease” is a condition where there is a lack of lubrication/moisture on the eyes. People all over the world and of all age groups are prone to experiencing dry eye, and it is one of the most common reasons for visiting an optometrist. This blog will help to answer what causes dry eye, what are the symptoms of dry eye, and some common dry eye treatments and preventative measures.

While it can be uncomfortable and irritating, it is not life threatening. However, that’s not to say that it won’t cause any damage at all. Untreated dry eye is prone to bacterial infections and can eventually lead to inflammation or corneal scarring and vision loss. 

Symptoms of Dry Eye

Symptoms can range from mild to severe, and it can affect people in different ways. These symptoms can include:

If you are experiencing—for a prolonged period of time—one or more of these you could be affected by dry eye syndrome and should see an optometrist. 

What causes dry eye syndrome?

Dry eye syndrome can be caused by many different factors, but it all revolves around your tears. While it is easily pushed to the wayside, tears are vital to your overall eye health. 

Tears are composed of three layers—a lipid oily layer, an aqueous watery layer and a mucin mucus like layer. An imbalance in tear composition leads to inflammation, which can damage the tear producing glands worsening the condition over time. 

Additionally, there should always be a tear layer around your eye to keep it moist, and to act as a protective layer against dust and microorganisms. Dry eye symptoms will set in when your eye stops producing quality tears or production of the components in the correct ratios. This can be caused from aging, hormone changes like menopause, thyroid disorders, vitamin A deficiency, lasik eye surgery and certain medications. 

Dry eye syndrome can also be caused from tear evaporation from wind, smoke, dry air, or blinking less often while reading, driving, or working on a computer. 

Dry Eyes and Screen Time

Recent studies have indicated that there is a link between dry eyes and screen time. According to a Nielsen Company audience report the average American spends close to 11 hours a day in front of a screen. With the world going digital and more people working from home now than ever, this is one of the leading causes of dry eyes. 

Prolonged sittings in front of a screen can dry out your eyes, and throw off the water, oil and mucus composition as well. 

When you blink your eyes release a tear film that coats your eyes and keeps them moist. While working on a computer, scrolling social media on your phone or just watching TV you don’t blink as much causing your eyes to dry out quicker.

Similarly, a Japanese study from 2014 indicated that working long hours in front of a computer screen can throw off your tear balance causing a decreased amount of mucus that is necessary for a healthy eye. 

Children are also susceptible to dry eyes from screen time. With a global pandemic, increased time inside and increased implementation of numerous screens, parents should be carefully monitoring their children’s screen use and the health implications. 

Chronic Dry Eye Prevention

One of the most important things to prevent dry eyes is to be aware of what you’re doing and your surroundings. 

Avoid direct airflow:

If you experience dry eyes in the morning it could be from your fan if it is blowing directly at you overnight. If it is an overhead fan try decreasing the speed, or if it is another type of fan try to not point it directly at your bed. Also, pay attention to air conditioning, heaters and hair dryers.

Humidify the air:

If you live in a dry environment an indoor humidifier can greatly increase the moisture in your home. 

Wear sunglasses: 

If you work outside sunglasses will not only protect you from dryness from the sun, but also from wind, dry air and any dust or microscopic particles.  

Take a break from the screen:

While working from a computer screen be sure to take breaks. Close your eyes for a few minutes, blink repeatedly to help spread your tears back out, or for every 20 minutes behind the screen take 20 seconds to look away at something in the distance. You can also try to lower your screen to below eye level so you aren’t forced to open your eyes as much. 

Don’t smoke:

Smoking poses numerous health risks throughout your body that contribute to dry eyes, and the smoke can worsen your dry eye symptoms. Consult with your doctor for a strategy to quit smoking. 

Treatments

Artificial tears: 

These are one of the most common treatments for dry eyes. They are eye drops that increase eye moisture, supplementing inadequate production of tear components.  Artificial tears range widely in their components and are much more than just rewetting drops today.

Medications:

Thankfully, if you suffer from chronic dry eye syndrome there are a multitude of different medications. An anti-inflammatory called cyclosporine (Restasis, Cequa and Klarity-C) is commonly used to increase your amount of tears and protect your cornea from further damage.  Lifitegrast (Xiidra) is another drug that is widely prescribed early in the dry eye treatment process.  Commonly doctors prescribe corticosteroid eye drops for rapid improvement in symptoms and use the prior medications for long term treatment. Consult with your doctor before taking any medication. 

Lacrimal or Punctal Plugs:

This is a simple procedure that blocks the drainage holes in the corners of your eyes. It is a reversible and non-permanent solution that can help slow tear loss. 

In office procedures:

The bacteria that live along the eyelids can produce toxins that cause inflammation and damage to the lid and tear glands.  Your optometrist can exfoliate the lids in the office and express stagnant tear components, opening up tear flow and reducing the bacterial buildup along the lids.  This is similar to how your dentist cleans your teeth to reduce cavities. 

Surgery: 

As a last resort some doctors may suggest surgery if the other treatments are ineffective. The tear drainage ducts can be cauterized to slow tear drainage similar to lacrimal plugs where it is aimed to stop the drainage of your tears. This surgery is permanent and only used in the most severe cases. Your surgeon may also recommend sewing the eyelids together to partially close the eyes.  A third option would be tighten up the conjunctiva so tears can spread more evenly over the eye.  

Custom Eye Care with Visionary Eye Center

Our Reno family eye care center offers exceptional personalized visual solutions. We have been proudly serving the Northern Nevada area since 2004, and we are continuously improving our practice, service, and knowledge. We offer customized dry eye solutions featuring the Crystal Tear Report from our Oculus Keratograph 5M. Contact us today to get started on your path to healthy eyes!

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