How To Reduce Eye Strain When Working With Computers

Whether you’re working long hours on a computer, or enjoy extracurricular digital activities, taking proactive measures to prevent digital eye strain is crucial. In a time where screens dominate our daily lives, it’s not uncommon to experience eye strain, discomfort, and fatigue. We’ll share a few practical tips and techniques to help you reduce eye strain and keep yourself comfortable during those long hours in front of a screen.

Keep Your Workspace Properly Lit for Visual Comfort

One of the primary culprits behind digital eye strain is improper lighting. A well-lit workspace can significantly reduce eye strain and enhance your visual comfort. Check to make sure that your computer screen is neither too bright nor too dim. There are lots of settings to help you adjust the brightness and contrast settings to match your surroundings.

Also, consider using indirect lighting to minimize glare and harsh reflections on your screen. For example, if you use a desk lamp, position it in a way that illuminates your workspace without causing any glare on the screen. This subtle adjustment can make a significant difference in reducing eye strain during prolonged computer use.

Shield Your Eyes from Harmful Rays with Blue Light Blocking Lenses

In today’s digital age, our eyes are constantly exposed to the blue light emitted by screens. Prolonged exposure to this type of light can contribute to eye strain and disrupt your sleep patterns. Performance Eyecare recommends investing in blue light blocking lenses to provide an extra layer of protection for your eyes – in fact, we provide this upgrade to our patients at no charge!

Blue light blocking lenses can filter out a significant portion of harmful blue light, reducing eye strain and preventing potential long-term damage. These lenses are available in prescription and non-prescription options, making them a versatile solution for everyone.

Find Your Comfort Zone with Ergonomic Setups

Creating an ergonomic workspace is a helpful – but often undervalued – tactic for preventing digital eye strain. First, position your computer screen at eye level, where the top third of your monitor is in line with your eyes. This will minimize how often you tilt your head up or down, reducing the strain on your neck and eyes. Invest in an ergonomic chair that supports good posture and consider using a document holder to keep reference materials at eye level.

Additionally, ensure that your keyboard and mouse are positioned comfortably to prevent unnecessary strain on your wrists and hands. Taking the time to set up an ergonomic workspace can significantly impact your comfort and productivity during long hours of computer use.

Give Your Eyes a Break with the 20-20-20 Rule

We recommend incorporating the 20-20-20 rule into your daily routine to give your eyes much-needed breaks. Every 20 minutes, take a 20-second break and look at something 20 feet away. This simple exercise reduces eye strain by providing moments of relaxation for your eye muscles. And how does that help? Short breaks allow your eyes to refocus, and prevent a lot of the discomfort and dryness associated with staring at a screen for extended periods of time. 

New habits can be difficult to start, but if you follow the 20-20-20 rule consistently, you’ll likely notice a positive impact on your eye health and overall well-being. At the beginning, you may want to use a timer to get familiar with the cadence. Soon, these short breaks will become a natural part of your day. 

Keep Your Eyes Comfortable with a Quality Eye Doctor

The team at Performance Eyecare encourages you to take proactive steps to protect your eyes and create healthier screen habits. Remember, a small investment in your eye health today can lead to long-term benefits, allowing you to enjoy the digital world with clarity and comfort.Ready to address your eye strain and say goodbye to fatigue? Schedule an eye exam with the trusted, experienced team at Performance Eyecare!

Why Plastic Quality Matters

Did you know that the quality of the plastic used in your eyeglasses can impact their lifespan and durability? At Performance Eyecare, we source only high-quality plastics to ensure that your glasses last as long as possible. Plus, we offer a 1-year warranty on all of our eyeglasses for your peace of mind.

In this video, we share the importance of quality plastic for your eyeglasses and how your eye doctor’s sourcing can make all the difference. We also provide some signs to look out for that may indicate that your glasses’ plastic is wearing out, so you can take action to maintain their longevity.

The Best Materials Create The Best Frames

Don’t settle for subpar eyeglasses – choose Performance Eyecare for quality materials and expert care. Schedule an exam with our optical experts today!

Keeping Rewearable Contact Lenses Clean and Comfortable

Contact lenses are a convenient and comfortable alternative to glasses, but they do require regular maintenance to ensure optimal vision and eye health. In this video, we provide tips for cleaning and storing your contact lenses, including the use of proper solutions and avoiding common mistakes like sleeping in your lenses.

Ensuring you get the most out of rewearable contacts begins at the eye doctor’s office. Our team will help you find contacts that fit with your lifestyle, and determine the best schedule for replacing your lenses. If you’ve had any changes in your vision or eye health, we’ll pick the perfect pair to help you enjoy clear vision and comfortable contact lens wear every day.

Quality Contact Lenses

Performance Eyecare offers a variety of contact lens options, including lenses for dry eyes, astigmatisms, and more. We love helping patients who are exploring contacts for the first time, as well as those who have struggled to get fit for contacts in the past. Schedule an exam with our optical experts to explore the comfort and flexibility of contacts today!

How to Take Care of Your Prescription glasses

Your prescription eyeglasses are a significant investment in your vision and style, so it’s important to take proper care to ensure they last as long as possible. Our team at Performance Eyecare will teach you all about how to maintain your glasses. By following these simple tips, you can enjoy comfortable, clear vision for years to come:

  • Clean your glasses regularly – a simple bath with warm water and dish soap will do the trick
  • Always store your glasses in a hardshell case when you aren’t wearing them
  • Make sure your frames are properly fit to your face, without leaning towards one side or the other
  • Keep your glasses away from possible damage – impact sports, hot cars, or curious pets are some of the top perpetrators

Our Glasses Are Built To Last

Performance Eyecare is proud to offer high quality glasses frames, including styles from our exclusive private label collections. Schedule your next eye exam today to find your new favorite pair of glasses!

Understanding Dry Eye: Treatment Options

If you’re reading this article, chances are you’ve experienced some dry eye symptoms. You’re in luck, despite misconceptions, dry eye is a curable condition. 

There are several effective treatment options available to alleviate its symptoms and improve overall eye health. If you’ve noticed changes in your eye lubrication or frequently experience dryness, itchiness, or a gritty sensation, it is crucial to seek an evaluation from your eye doctor.

Causes and Symptoms of Dry Eye

Dry eye occurs when your eyes fail to produce enough tears or when the tears evaporate too quickly.

Several factors contribute to this condition, including:

  • Environmental conditions
  • Medical conditions
  • Certain medications

Environmental factors such as dry air, wind, or exposure to smoke can exacerbate dry eye symptoms. Medical conditions like autoimmune disorders, diabetes, and hormonal changes can also impact tear production. Furthermore, certain medications, such as antihistamines, decongestants, and antidepressants, can cause dryness in the eyes.

Symptoms

Dry eye presents with various symptoms, including:

  • Persistent dry sensation
  • Redness
  • Itching
  • Blurred vision
  • Light sensitivity
  • Discomfort when wearing contact lenses.

These symptoms can range from mild to severe and can significantly affect your quality of life if left untreated.

Diagnosing Dry Eye

If you suspect you have dry eyes, seeking professional evaluation is essential.

Your eye doctor will conduct a thorough examination to diagnose dry eye accurately and determine the underlying causes. During the evaluation, your eye doctor will review your medical history, assess your symptoms, and perform specific tests to measure tear production and evaluate the quality of your tears.

Treatment Options for Dry Eye

Whether your symptoms are mild or severe, understanding these treatment options can help you find relief and improve your overall eye health. From artificial tears and lubricating eye drops to lifestyle modifications and advanced procedures, each approach aims to address the underlying causes of dry eye and provide the necessary moisture and lubrication your eyes need

Artificial Tears and Lubricating Eye Drops

One of the most common treatment options for dry eye is the use of artificial tears or lubricating eye drops.

These products supplement the natural tear film and provide relief from dryness and discomfort. Your eye doctor may recommend different types of eye drops, including those that reduce inflammation or stimulate tear production, based on the severity of your dry eye.

Lifestyle Modifications

In addition to eye drops, certain lifestyle changes can help manage dry eye symptoms effectively.

Increasing humidity levels in your environment, avoiding excessive screen time, taking regular breaks to rest your eyes, and wearing protective eyewear outdoors can significantly alleviate dry eye symptoms and improve overall eye health.

Advanced Procedures

For severe cases of dry eye, advanced procedures may be recommended.

Punctal occlusion is one such option where tiny plugs are inserted into the tear ducts to slow down tear drainage and maintain better eye lubrication. Other advanced treatments may involve techniques like intense pulsed light therapy or prescription medications to address the underlying causes of dry eye and provide long-lasting relief.

Trust the Experts for Dry Eye Treatment at Performance Eyecare

By seeking timely treatment for dry eye, you can enjoy clear vision and comfortable eyes without any pain or discomfort. If you are experiencing dry eye symptoms, schedule an appointment with one of our experienced eye doctors at Performance Eyecare.

With ten convenient locations in Missouri and Illinois, we offer personalized care and tailor dry eye treatment options to your specific needs. Don’t let dry eye hold you back from living life to the fullest. Schedule your next eye exam today to take the first step towards relieving your dry eye symptoms. Our dedicated team is ready to assist you on your journey to optimal eye health.

My Dog Scratched My Eye! Here’s What To Do for Immediate Care and Recovery

Our beloved furry friends bring us joy and companionship, but accidents can happen when we least expect them. If you find yourself in a situation where your dog has scratched your eye, it’s crucial to act quickly to prevent infection and minimize any potential damage. In this informative video, we will guide you through the immediate steps to take if you suspect your eye has been scratched by your canine companion.

Contrary to popular belief, seeking immediate care from an eye doctor is often more effective than rushing to the emergency room. Join us as we provide valuable insights and expert advice to help you navigate this unexpected situation.

man laying on his back playing with his dog

Immediate Steps to Take

When a dog scratches your eye, it can cause discomfort eye pain, redness, and potentially lead to complications if not addressed promptly. Here are the immediate steps to follow:

Rinse your eye

Carefully flush your eye with clean, lukewarm water for at least 15 minutes. Use a gentle stream of water, such as from a faucet or a clean cup, to rinse away any debris or particles that may have entered your eye. Tilt your head slightly to the side and let the water flow from the inner corner of your eye toward the outer corner. Be cautious not to use excessively hot or cold water, as it can further irritate your eye.

Avoid rubbing your eye

It’s natural to feel the urge to rub your eye when it’s irritated, but it’s important to resist the temptation. Rubbing your eye can exacerbate the injury, increase the risk of infection, and potentially cause further damage to the delicate tissues. Instead, try to keep your eye closed or blink gently to help alleviate any discomfort.

Assess the severity

After rinsing your eye, carefully evaluate the severity of the scratch. If you experience persistent pain, excessive redness, blurry vision, sensitivity to light, or if you notice any changes in your vision, it is crucial to seek immediate medical attention. These symptoms may indicate a more severe injury or underlying complications of eye infection that require professional evaluation and treatment.

Protect your eye

While waiting to see your eye doctor, it’s important to protect your eye from further harm. Avoid activities that could potentially aggravate the eye injury further, such as engaging in sports or activities that expose your eyes to dust, wind, or other irritants. Consider wearing a protective eye patch or using a clean and sterile eye shield to prevent accidental rubbing or contact with foreign objects.

Contact your eye doctor

Once you have assessed the severity of the scratch and taken initial precautions, it is essential to contact your eye doctor promptly. Explain the situation and inform them that you suspect your eye has been scratched by your dog. They will guide you on the next steps to take and schedule an appointment to assess the injury.

Remember, time is of the essence when it comes to eye injuries. Seeking professional medical attention as soon as possible is crucial to prevent complications and ensure proper healing. Even if the scratch appears minor, it’s always better to err on the side of caution and have your eye thoroughly evaluated by an eye care professional.

Why Visit an Eye Doctor for a Scratched Eye

While some individuals rush to the emergency room for a scratched eye, the reality is that an eye doctor’s office is often the most suitable place for proper evaluation and treatment. Eye doctors specialize in diagnosing and treating eye conditions, including eye injuries caused by dog scratches.

Here’s why you should consider visiting an eye doctor for your scratched eye:

  1. Expert evaluation: Eye doctors are trained to examine and diagnose various eye injuries accurately. They have the knowledge and experience to assess the severity of the scratch and determine the best course of treatment.
  2. Specialized equipment: Eye doctors have access to specialized equipment that allows for a detailed examination of your eye. This helps them identify any underlying issues that may require specific treatment or further monitoring.
  3. Tailored treatment plan: Based on the evaluation, your eye doctor will develop a personalized treatment plan to facilitate healing and prevent complications. They can prescribe appropriate medications, recommend antibiotic eye drops, or suggest protective measures to ensure a swift and successful recovery.
  4. Long-term eye health: Beyond immediate care, visiting an eye doctor ensures the long-term health of your eyes. They can address any other concerns you may have, perform routine eye exams, and offer guidance on preventive measures to maintain optimal eye health.

Rely on the Experts at Performance Eyecare to Treat Minor Eye Injuries

Accidents happen, even with dogs, our furry companions. If your dog has scratched your eye, remember to stay calm and take immediate action. By following the steps outlined in this video, you can effectively minimize the risk of infection and further damage to your injured eye. Seeking care from an eye doctor is the best course of action, as they possess the expertise, specialized equipment, and tailored treatment plans to ensure your eye heals properly.

At Performance Eyecare, the Midwest’s largest privately held eye care provider, we are dedicated to offering comprehensive eye care services. With nine locations across Missouri and Illinois, our team of experienced eye doctors is ready to provide the necessary care and guidance

Keep in mind that each case may vary, and the advice provided in the video and this blog post is meant to serve as general guidance. Your eye doctor will provide you with personalized recommendations based on the specific details of your situation.

Are Your Cheater Glasses Cheating You?

Are you tired of struggling to read small print or straining your eyes to see clearly? Many people turn to over-the-counter reading glasses, also known as “cheater glasses” or “cheaters” as a quick fix. However, it’s crucial to consider the potential drawbacks before relying solely on your over-the-counter reading glasses. In this video, Dr. Tom Cunningham delves into the limitations of over-the-counter reading glasses and highlights the importance of personalized eyewear solutions for optimal vision and eye health.

Understanding the Limitations of Reading Glasses

senior hands holding a pair of reading glasses or cheater glasses

Over-the-counter reading glasses may seem convenient, but they are not a one-size-fits-all solution. Dr. Cunningham explains how these mass-produced glasses lack customization for people with individual vision needs. The generic magnification strengths may not accurately address your unique prescription requirements, potentially leading to strain, headaches, and even blurred vision.

The Importance of Eye Health

sliver of light shining on an open eye during an eye doctor eye exam

When it comes to vision care, it’s crucial to prioritize not just clear vision but also the overall health of your eyes. Over-the-counter reading glasses may provide a temporary fix for reading difficulties, but they do not address the underlying health of your eyes. Eye health goes beyond just seeing clearly; it involves detecting and managing potential eye diseases and monitoring changes in your vision.

Conditions such as glaucoma, macular degeneration, and diabetic retinopathy may not present noticeable symptoms in their early stages, but they can be detected and managed through routine eye exams. Optometrists are trained to identify signs of these conditions and can provide appropriate referrals or treatments when necessary.

The Benefits of Professional Eye Exams

To truly achieve optimal vision and eye health, Dr. Cunningham emphasizes the importance of professional eye exams. During these comprehensive evaluations, your optometrist can assess your vision needs, detect any underlying eye conditions, and provide personalized solutions. Customized prescription glasses, tailored to your age and specific prescription, can offer clearer vision and provide long-term comfort. Things reading glasses can’t guarantee for the long term.

The Benefits of Customized Prescription Glasses vs Reading Glasses

several rows of prescription eyeglasses on bright plastic display at an eye doctors office

Unlike over-the-counter reading glasses, customized prescription glasses offer customers several advantages. Firstly, they are tailored specifically to your individual vision needs. Your optometrist will conduct a thorough examination, taking into account factors such as refractive errors, astigmatism, and other visual abnormalities. With this precise information, they can prescribe glasses that address your unique vision requirements, resulting in optimal clarity and comfort.

a clear plastic pair of eyeglasses with blue light coating sitting on an open laptop

Furthermore, customized prescription lenses provide superior lens types that are not available in over-the-counter reading glasses. For example, if you spend a significant amount of time outdoors, your eye doctor may recommend prescription sunglasses with built-in UV protection to shield your eyes from the sun and harmful ultraviolet rays. Additionally, lens coatings like blue light coating, can be applied to reduce glare, slightly enhance visual acuity, and minimize eye strain, especially in situations where you work on digital devices for extended periods.

Performance Eyecare: Your Trusted Vision Partner

In the quest for clear vision and optimal eye health, it’s essential to go beyond quick fixes, like over-the-counter reading glasses, and prioritize professional care. Over-the-counter reading glasses may seem convenient, but they come with limitations and potential risks. By seeking regular eye exams and investing in customized prescription glasses, you can enjoy the benefits of clear vision, accurate prescriptions, and the peace of mind that comes with proper eye health management.

With our team of skilled optometrists and state-of-the-art technology, we are committed to providing exceptional eye care services tailored to your needs. Our comprehensive eye exams go beyond just determining your prescription; we thoroughly assess the health of your eyes and address any concerns you may have.

We understand that everyone’s vision requirements are unique, which is why we offer a wide selection of eyewear styles and options, including high-quality plastic and metal frames, durable materials, and classic and stylish designs. Our one-year warranty on all eyeglasses ensures your investment is protected, giving you peace of mind and confidence in your eyewear choice.

If you’re ready to leave the limitation of over-the-counter reading glasses behind, schedule an appointment with one of our locations today!

Performance Eyecare is the Midwest’s largest, privately held eye care provider with nine locations in Missouri and Illinois.

Tips For Your First Time in Contact Lenses

Preparing for your first time in contacts? In this video, Dr. Thomas Cunningham, a top-rated eye doctor for Performance Eyecare, shares his tips for first time contact lens wearers. 

Our best advice for patients preparing to wear contact lenses is to not worry! Before attempting to put the lenses in, we recommend practicing getting your (clean) finger close to your eye. Take your time with this, getting closer until you’re comfortable enough to touch your eye. This will take some of the anxiety away from putting lenses in for the first time. 

Once patients learn that touching their eye is not harmful or painful, they quickly pick up how to insert the contact lenses into their eyes.

Wearing contact lenses for the first time can seem daunting, but with the right guidance and practice, you’ll be able to wear them with ease. Dr. Cunningham’s tips for first-time contact lens wearers are an excellent resource for those who are new to the world of contacts. So, whether you want to wear contacts for cosmetic reasons or medical necessity, Performance Eyecare has you covered.

Book an appointment today and experience the benefits of wearing contacts with the help of our experienced and knowledgeable eye doctors.

January is the ideal time to start getting eye exams

Eye chart and eye exam at Performance Eyecare

January is a great time to schedule your annual eye exam. Just remember, “a new year, a new eye exam” to help you remember.

Eye exams are often pushed aside by people with great vision and even those with poor sight, but routine exams are important regardless of age or physical health.

The eye doctors do much more than determine your prescription, if any, for eyeglasses or contact lenses during your eye exam. They also check them for common eye diseases, assess how your eyes work together as a team and evaluate your eyes as an indicator of your overall health.

Eye doctors are often the first health care professionals to detect chronic systematic diseases such as high blood pressure and diabetes.

So what does e eye doctor check for during your eye exam? As mentioned above, it’s more than you think.

Eye doctors check the eyes for refractive error, which refers to nearsightedness, farsightedness and astigmatism. This can be corrected with eye glasses, contacts or surgery.

They also check for amblyopia, which occurs when the eyes are turned or when one eye has a much different prescription than the other. In addition, they can check for strabismus (crossed or turned eyes), eye teaming problems, focusing problems, eye diseases such as glaucoma and diabetic retinopathy, and other diseases.

Be sure to schedule an eye exam soon, especially if you haven’t one in over a year. You can schedule an appointment at any of our MO or IL locations over the phone or online!

A visit to Performance Eyecare can keep you from having eye strain

We’ve all squinted to see something before, but we don’t have to do that if we wear the correct eyewear.

At Performance Eyecare, we will protect you from eye strain by giving you an eye exam and then prescribing any necessary eyeglasses or contacts.

Preventing Eye Strain

Are you sitting too close to your computer screen? Doing this can cause eye fatigue and blurred vision, which will make you feel like you have to get even closer to the screen.

Is there excessive lighting around your desk? Overhead lighting should be no brighter than your screen or else it will cause eye strain.

Are you wearing old prescription glasses? It’s always important to wear recently prescribed eyeglasses if you have them. You should schedule an appointment if you are forced to wear old eyeglasses. We can also fit you for custom computer eyeglasses.

Does your computer have an old monitor and low-resolution screens? These two things can be hard on your eyes. Upgrade to a high-resolution flat panel display for less eye fatigue.

Do you “turtle” when you sit at your desk? “Turtling” is when you sit with your back rounded, chin pushed forward and head tilted back. Some of us do this to get closer to the screen. You should schedule an appointment with our office if you can’t see the screen clearly with good posture.

Is your mouse too far away? If yes, then you’re forced to lean forward and closer to the screen which will cause strain.

Are you sitting in a bad chair? Your back should be supported so you can sit upright and at a comfortable distance from the screen.

Here are three additional tips to help combat eye strain:

Get an eye exam. This is simple because your eye doctor can identify your vision problems and prescribe special computer glasses for better comfort.

Avoid “computer stare.” It’s easy to forget to blink at a computer screen. Remember to blink often and fully to keep your eyes moist and comfortable.

Winter weather could irritate your eyes

The bright sun reflecting off the white snow isn’t the only eye hazard you should be worried about this winter. Other hazards that could irritate your eyes are the cold winds and dry air.

As noted by Osteopathic.org, harsh weather conditions can make eyes constantly dry and irritated, especially for those who wear contact lenses. Also, dry eyes can be troublesome when you’re indoors as well since the indoor heat eliminates moisture from the air.

Eye drops can be used a few times a day to help combat the dry-eye problem as well as installing humidifiers throughout your house to increase the indoor levels of humidity.

Staying hydrated and eating proper nutrition, in addition to eye drops and wearing sunglasses outside, can help keep your eyes moist. Studies have found that supplements containing omega-3 fatty acids, such as cold-water fish (sardines, cod, herring, and salmon), and flaxseed oil can relieve dry eye.

Drinking more water can help as well. The Institute of Medicine states that each day women need 91 ounces of water and men need about 125 ounces to stay hydrated. Experts agree that about 20 percent of the water your body needs comes from the food you eat. The best choices for beverages are water, 100 percent fruit and vegetable juices and milk.

Is Your Eyesight in Need of Protection During the Winter? We Say YES!

Snow lovers everywhere are gearing up for winter to officially hit, and many are wondering if this year’s winter will be a winter wonderland or a mild season. Many forecasters are calling for more wintery precipitation than last year in the St. Louis area.

You might be one of the many who dread winter and are currently putting away your shorts, flip-flops, and swimsuits for the rest of the year. One important “summer” item that you shouldn’t put away – your sunglasses!

You may not realize it, but spending a day in the snow can be much harder and detrimental to your eyes than a day at the beach. That’s because snow reflects nearly 80% of the sun’s rays, which means that more harmful ultraviolet rays are directed into your unprotected eyes.

Hours of bright sunlight can actually burn the surface of your eyes. This causes a temporary yet painful condition called photokeratitis. As time passes, unprotected exposure to the sun can contribute to cataracts and even cancer of the eyelids and to the skin around the eyes. Ultraviolet exposure can also increase your risk of macular degeneration, which is the leading cause of blindness in people over the age of 65.

Winter Eye Protection

How do you ensure that your eyes are protected during the winter? Easy! Wear the proper eye gear.

When you go outside to build a snowman, take a walk in the snow, start a snow fight, or attempt to drive to work in the snowy wonderland, always wear a pair of sunglasses that will block out the harmful ultraviolet light. Make sure that your sunglasses can block out 100% of UV light. Remember, just because the lenses are dark doesn’t guarantee that they will block out 100% of the light.

If you plan on hitting the slopes this winter, be sure to wear protective eyewear. Goggles or sunglasses should do the trick and should help ensure your safety.

Most importantly of all, please do remember to wear sunglasses while on the road. Too often we are blinded by the bright light reflecting off the snow, and this can cause harm to ourselves and others around us. Avoid any and all accidents by wearing sunglasses so you can see where you are going.

If you’re looking for the perfect pair of sunglasses for you to wear during the winter (and the rest of the year, too!), come see us. We have hundreds of frames for you to choose from. Protect your vision this winter with help from your friends at Performance Eyecare!