Contact Lens Myths

Are you afraid of wearing contact lenses? Check out these contact lens myths debunked and then decide if they are right for you.

MYTH: I can’t wear contact lenses

Just about everyone can now wear contact lenses thanks to technological advances. Some of the advances now allow those with astigmatism and those who need bifocal contact lenses.

MYTH: A contact lens will get lost behind my eye

It’s impossible for a contact lens to get lost behind your eye. That’s because a thin membrane called the conjunctiva covers the white of your eye and connects to the inside of your eyelids.

MYTH: Contact lenses are uncomfortable

There is a brief period for you to get adapted to the change, but you will likely not notice that you are wearing contact lenses. There are remedies available should the contact lenses cause discomfort.

MYTH: Contact lenses can get permanently stuck to my eye

Soft contact lens can stick to the surface of your eye if it’s dried out. However, you can remoisten the lens by applying sterile saline or multipurpose contact lens solution to get it moving again.

MYTH: Contact lenses are too much trouble to take care of

One-bottle contact lens care systems make cleaning your lenses easy. Alternatively, you can choose to eliminate the care altogether by getting daily disposables or 30-day extendable wear ones.

MYTH: Wearing contact lenses cause eye problems

If you follow your eye doctor’s instructions on how to care for your lenses, how long to wear them and how frequently to replace them, wearing contact lenses is safe.

MYTH: I’ll never be able to get them in my eyes

It might be difficult at first, but your eye care professional will make sure you learn how to apply and remove them before you leave their office.

MYTH: Contacts can pop out of my eye

The old-fashioned hard ones could, but today’s contacts fit closer to the eye so it’s very rare for one to dislodge from a wearer’s eye unexpectedly.

MYTH: Contact lenses are too expensive

They can be less expensive than a good pair of eyeglasses. Even daily disposable lenses can cost about a dollar a day.

MYTH: I’m too old to wear contact lenses

Thanks to the bifocal contact lenses and contacts designed for dry eyes, getting older is no longer a barrier to successful contact lenses. You should ask your doctor if you’re a candidate for contacts.

At Performance Eyecare, we can routinely fit our contact lens patients the same day as their exam. Get in touch with your local office to schedule your contact lens appointment today!

Your Infant’s Visual Development

One of the greatest moments after the birth of your baby is the first time your newborn daughter or son opens their eyes and makes eye contact with you. But don’t be concerned if that doesn’t happen right away.

The visual system of a newborn infant takes some time to develop. In the first week of life, your newborn’s vision is quite blurry, and they see only in shades of gray. It takes several months for your child’s vision to fully develop.

Knowing the expected milestones of your baby’s vision development during their first year of life can insure your child is seeing properly and enjoying their world to the fullest.

During your pregnancy

Your child’s vision development begins before birth. How you care for your own body during your pregnancy is extremely important for the development of your baby’s body and mind, including their eyes and the vision centers in their brain.

Be sure to follow the instructions your obstetrician (OB/GYN doctor) gives you regarding proper nutrition and the proper amount of rest during your pregnancy. And of course, avoid smoking and consuming alcohol or drugs during pregnancy, as these toxins can cause multiple problems for your baby, including serious vision problems.

Your Newborn’s Vision At Birth

At birth, your baby sees only in shades of gray. Nerve cells in their eyes and brain that control vision aren’t fully developed. Also, their eyes don’t have the ability to change focus and see close object clearly. So don’t be concerned if your baby doesn’t seem to be focusing on objects right away, including your face. It just takes time. (Despite these limitations, studies show that within a few days after birth, infants prefer looking at an image of their mother’s face over anyone else’s.)

Infant Vision After the First Month

Color vision develops in the first few weeks of life, so your baby is starting to see the world in full color. But visual acuity and eye teaming takes a bit longer — so if your infant’s eyes occasionally look unfocused or misaligned, don’t worry.

The eyes of infants are not as sensitive to visible light as adult eyes are, but they need protection from the sun’s harmful UV rays. Keep your baby’s eyes shaded outdoors with a brimmed cap or some other means.

Infant Vision During Months 2 and 3

Your baby’s vision is improving and their two eyes are beginning to move better as a team. They should be following moving objects at this stage, and starting to reach for things they see. Also, infants at this stage are learning how to shift their gaze from one object to another without having to move their head.

Infant Vision During Months 4 to 6

By 6 months of age, significant advances take place in the vision centers of the brain, allowing your infant to see more distinctly, move their eyes faster and more accurately, and have a better ability to follow moving objects with their eyes.

Visual acuity develops rapidly, improving from about 20/400 at birth to about 20/25 at six months of age. Your child’s color vision should be nearly fully developed at age six months as well, enabling them to see all the colors of the rainbow with ease.

Children also develop better eye-hand coordination at 4 to 6 months of age. They’re able to quickly locate and pick up objects, and accurately direct a bottle (and many other things) to their mouth.

Infant Vision Months 7 to 12

Your child is now mobile, crawling about and covering more distances than you might have expected. They are also better at judging distances and more skilled at locating, grasping and throwing objects, too.

During months 7 to 12, your child is developing a better awareness of their overall body and learning how to coordinate their vision with their body movements. At this time, watch them closely to keep them from harm as they explore their environment. Keep cabinets that contain cleaning supplies locked, and put a barrier in front of stairwells.

When Does Your Infant Need an Eye Exam?

If you suspect something is seriously wrong with your baby’s eyes in their first few months of life (a bulging eye, a red eye, excess tearing, or a constant misalignment of the eyes, for example) take your child to a pediatric ophthalmologist or other eye doctor immediately.

For routine eye care, the American Optometric Association (AOA) recommends you schedule your baby’s first eye exam when they are six months old. Though your baby can’t yet read letters on a wall chart, your optometrist can perform non-verbal testing to determine visual acuity, detect excessive or unequal amounts of nearsightedness, farsightedness and astigmatism, and evaluate eye teaming and alignment. At this exam, your doctor will also check the health of your baby’s eyes, looking for anything that might interfere with normal and continuing vision development.

We welcome providing eye care for even the youngest children. For more information about eye exams for kids or to schedule your child’s first eye exam, please call our office.

15 Facts About Your Eyes

Eyes are very complex and interesting organs. There are seven main parts in the eye that play a role in transmitting information to the brain, detecting light, and focusing. A problem with any of these parts means a problem with your vision.

Here are 15 interesting facts about eyes that you probably didn’t know:

  1. The average blink lasts for about 1/10th of a second.
  2. While it takes some time for most parts of your body to warm up to their full potential, your eyes are on their “A game” 24/7.
  3. Eyes heal quickly. With proper care, it only takes about 48 hours for the eye to repair a corneal scratch.
  4. Seeing is such a big part of everyday life that it requires about half of the brain to get involved.
  5. Newborns don’t produce tears. They make crying sounds, but the tears don’t start flowing until they are about 4-13 weeks old.
  6. Around the world, about 39 million people are blind and roughly 6 times that many have some kind of vision impairment.
  7. Doctors have yet to find a way to transplant an eyeball. The optic nerve that connects the eye to the brain is too sensitive to reconstruct successfully.
  8. The cells in your eye come in different shapes. Rod-shaped cells allow you to see shapes, and cone-shaped cells allow you to see color.
  9. You blink about 12 times every minute.
  10. Your eyes are about 1 inch across and weigh about 0.25 ounce.
  11. Some people are born with two differently colored eyes. This condition is heterochromia.
  12. Even if no one in the past few generations of your family had blue or green eyes, these recessive traits can still appear in later generations.
  13. Each of your eyes has a small blind spot in the back of the retina where the optic nerve attaches. You don’t notice the hole in your vision because your eyes work together to fill in each other’s blind spot.
  14. Out of all the muscles in your body, the muscles that control your eyes are the most active.
  15. 80% of vision problems worldwide are avoidable or even curable.

Have any more questions about eyes? Let us help! Schedule an appointment with us today!

ADHD & Vision Problems

Children Diagnosed with ADHD May Actually Have Vision Problems

ADHD, Performance Eyecare, Illinois Doctos, Missouri Doctors

Have you ever considered whether your child’s attention issues are directly related to their vision? Most people would probably answer no to this question, but the American Optometric Association discusses just that in this article; they state that children with the following symptoms may not actually have attention issues or ADHD, but problems with their visual skills:

  • Avoid reading and other near visual work as much as possible.
  • Attempt to do the work anyway, but with a lowered level of comprehension or efficiency.
  • Experience discomfort, fatigue and a short attention span.

What Signs Should I Look For?

The Center for Disease Control, the CDC, has a checklist dedicated to ADHD and the symptoms that may show in a child who has ADHD. Here are a few of the symptoms. A full list can be found here:

  • Often does not give close attention to details or makes careless mistakes in schoolwork, work, or other activities.
  • Is often forgetful in daily activities.
  • Often avoids, dislikes, or doesn’t want to do things that take a lot of mental effort for a long period of time (such as schoolwork or homework).

As you can see, the signs of vision problems can mimic the signs of ADHD. Ruling out a potential vision issue may help your child succeed in school because they can get the medical or therapeutic help that they need. On the other hand, if what they need is glasses, we can help with that.

If your child is experiencing any of the above struggles, it’s time to get them in for an eye exam to rule out potential vision problems. Undiagnosed vision issues can lead to your child under-performing in school because they cannot see well enough to complete their work in order to succeed. Because your child’s eye needs can change over time, it’s possible that you are seeing these issues arise for the first time. Catching the problem as early as possible is vital. Children’s eyecare starts with regular examinations to catch potential issues before they hamper a child’s ability to succeed in school.

Performance Eyecare Can Help

At Performance Eyecare, we regularly treat a variety of eye conditions in children. We have offices all around the St. Louis region for your conveinence. Our experienced optometrists can complete your child’s eye exam, diagnose any issues with their vision, and then we can create a pair of custom glasses for your child in our in-office eyeglass laboratory.

Please contact us to schedule an appointment. Our experienced optometrists will be happy to answer any questions that you may have regarding children’s eye exams or vision problems and school performance, as well as what makes our eyeglass facility stand out in terms of quality and price. We look forward to hearing from you.

Eye Myths and Facts

Can using someone else’s prescription glasses harm your eyes? Will sitting to close to the television ruin your eyes? Will crossing your eyes to long make them permanently stick like that?! Everyone has heard many eye rumors, many from your parents growing up. The questions everyone has is, are they true? Below is a list of eye myths and facts. I bet you will be shocked by some of them. Don’t be afraid to share this with your parents!

Reading in poor light will hurt the eyes: Before the invention of electric light, most nighttime reading and other work was done by dim candlelight or gaslight. Reading in dim light today won’t harm our eyes any more than it did our ancestors’ eyes or any more than taking a photograph in dim light will damage a camera.

Holding a book too close or sitting too close to the television set is harmful to the eyes: Many children with excellent vision like to hold books very near to their eyes or sit close to the television set. Their youthful eyes focus very well up close, so this behavior is natural to them, and it is safe. Children and adults who are nearsighted might need to get close to a book or television set to see clearly. Doing so does not cause or worsen nearsightedness or any other kinds of eye problem.

Using the eyes too much and “wear them out”: We wouldn’t lose our sense of smell by using our nose too much or our hearing by using our ears too much. The eyes were made for seeing. We won’t lose our vision by using our eyes for their intended purpose.

Wearing eyeglasses that are too strong or have the wrong prescription will damage the eyes: Eyeglasses change the light rays that the eye receives. They do not change any part of the eye itself. Wearing glasses that are too strong or otherwise wrong for the eyes cannot harm an adult’s, although it might result in a temporary headache. At worse, the glasses will fail to correct vision and make the wearer uncomfortable because of blurriness, but no damage to any part of the eye will result.

Wearing eyeglasses will weaken the eyes: The eyeglasses worn to correct nearsightedness, farsightedness, astigmatism, or presbyopia will not weaken the eyes any more than they will permanently “cure” these kinds of vision problems. Glasses are simply external optical aids that provide vision to people with blurred vision caused by refractive errors. Exceptions are the kinds of glasses given to children with crossed eyes (strabismus) or lazy eye (amblyopia). These glasses are used temporarily to help straighten the eyes or improve vision. Not wearing such glasses may lead to permanently defective vision.

Crossing the eyes can make them permanently crossed: Our eye muscles are meant to allow us to move our eyes in many different directions. Looking left, right, up, or down, will not force the eyes to stay permanently crossed. Crossed eyes result from disease, from uncorrected refractive error, or from muscle or nerve damage, not from forcing the eyes into that position.

Having 20/20 vision means that the eyes are perfect: The term “20/20” denotes a person with excellent central vision. But other types of vision-such as side vision, night vision, or color vision might be imperfect. Some potentially blinding eye disease, such as glaucoma or diabetic retinopathy, can take years to develop. During this time, they are harming parts of the inner eye, but the central vision can remain unaffected.

http://mayoclinichealthsystem.org/locations/la-crosse/medical-services/ophthalmology/myths-and-facts