Three Different Eye Diseases Diabetics Need to Watch Out For

People with diabetes are at a greater risk for eye disease.

High glucose levels can damage the blood vessels in the eye, which can lead to vision loss or blindness; many eye diseases have no symptoms in the early stages, so regular eye exams are a must for diabetics.

There are many different eye diseases that can plague the diabetic; the list is long, however; this article will focus on three particularly serious eye problems: cataracts, glaucoma, and retinopathy.

Performance eye, diabetes and eye health

Cataracts

Diabetics are 60% more likely to get cataracts; and at a younger age than people without diabetes. Poor control of blood sugar speeds it up so tight control over your blood sugar and regular eye doctor visits are most important.

Cataracts are cloudy areas that develop within the eye lens, thereby blocking light to the retina where images are processed, and making it harder to see. They don’t cause symptoms like pain, redness or tearing, and some might stay small enough to not affect your eyesight at all.

Large, thick cataracts are generally removed via surgery.

Glaucoma

People with diabetes are 40% more likely to get glaucoma, and the longer you have diabetes, your chances become greater. Glaucoma usually has no symptoms, but it can cause bright halos or colored rings around lights. Left untreated, it can cause an increase in eye pressure damaging the optic nerve and resulting in vision loss and blindness.

Glaucoma can be diagnosed by your ophthalmologist performing these five exams: tonometry (measuring the pressure in your eye), gonioscopy (inspecting your eye’s drainage angle), ophthalmoscopy (inspecting the optic nerve), a field vision test which tests your peripheral vision, and pachymetry, which measures the thickness of your cornea.

Treatment may include eye drops, pills, laser surgery, traditional surgery or a combination of these methods.

Diabetic Retinopathy

Diabetic retinopathy is damage to blood vessels inside the retina caused by blood sugar buildup. During the early stages there is no pain and vision is not likely to change until the disease increases in severity. Over time, however; the walls of your blood vessels may leak fluid, and after having diabetes for a while, blood vessels can form scar tissue and pull the retina away from the back of your eye, leading to severe vision loss and possibly even blindness.

Retinopathy is diagnosed during a thorough eye exam using a special dye to find leaking blood vessels.

Treatment in early stages is a laser surgery that seals the blood vessels and stops them from leaking and growing. It can’t restore lost vision, but combined with follow-up care, it can lower the chance of blindness by as much as 90%. Later stage treatment may consist of surgery to remove scar tissue, blood and cloudy fluid from inside the eye, improving vision.

As you can see from these three different eye diseases, keeping control of your blood sugar is most important if you wish to keep your eyesight. Contact us today to find out more about how we can help.

Vision over 40 – Reading Glasses Make Life Easier

Most people have natural vision changes after they reach age 40.

Eye chart and eyeglasses, Performance Eyecare, Glasses, Designer Frames

The main issue with vision over 40 is presbyopia, which means that you find yourself holding that restaurant menu at arm’s length to see it better. When you begin to see blurry text and have trouble with computer glare it is time to get a good pair of prescription reading glasses.

Presbyopia is normal but progressive. The lens of your eye becomes less flexible and cannot focus on close objects. This is why you are suddenly holding books at a distance. Other issues can be glare or color shade distinction. Presbyopia continues to decline through your 40s and 50s but slows down by age 60.

While it is tempting to buy reading glasses at the dollar store, you will use them daily and need a comfortably fitting frame with a prescription tailored to your eyesight. Also, after age 40 it is best to have a licensed optometrist examine your eyes every two years. They are trained to look for many different kinds of eye problems, not blurry vision. Diabetes, high blood pressure and medications for various other health issues are all linked to vision changes.

Some people who wear single vision glasses balk at the idea of switching to dowdy bifocals. Consider progressive lenses, which look better than bifocals and hide the need to use reading glasses. The lens is made with a seamless integration of distance, middle and near visions. Progressive lenses fit your natural gaze with no jump in vision as you look up and down.

We’d love to talk to you about how to adapt to vision changes after age 40. Contact us to set up an appointment and explore our wide range of eyecare services.

Dry Eye Syndrome

How Do I Know If I Have Dry Eye Syndrome?

Dry Eye Syndrome, Red Eyes, Performance Eyecare
Dry Eye Syndrome is caused by chronic lack of sufficient lubrication and moisture on the surface of your eye. This is more common among women. Although there is no determining factor for this, we believe dry eyes could possibly be due to hormonal fluctuations.

Symptoms You May Have Dry Eye Syndrome

  1. Blurriness
  2. Sensitivity to light
  3. Irritation from windy conditions
  4. Fatigued eyes, especially at the end of the day
  5. Irritation, or problems wearing contact lenses
  6. Gritty or scratchy feelings
  7. Excessive tearing
  8. Red eyes

If you suffer from any of the above, you may want to contact Dr. Massie or Dr. Cuff to take a look and possibly diagnose for treatment.

Possible Causes Of Dry Eye Syndrome

  1. Heavy reading, or excessive digital device use
  2. LASIK eye surgery
  3. Prolonged contacts lens wearing
  4. Living or working in dry environments
  5. Diets lacking in fatty acids
  6. Certain prescriptions such as allergy drugs, beta-blockers, etc
  7. Deficiency of tear-producing glands
  8. Certain health conditions such as arthritis, diabetes, lupus & more

Diabetic Retinopathy

a diabetic injecting himself with insulin, Performance Eyecare

If you have been diagnosed with diabetes, it is important to have regular eye exams, at least once per year. Diabetes increases your risk of eye problems, so it is important to not delay in caring for your eyes.  However, you are also at risk for diabetic retinopathy: damage to the blood vessels located in your retina.

What is Diabetic Retinopathy?

This disease is the most common among those suffering from diabetes – both type 1 and 2; is the leading cause in America for blindness. In some people, the blood vessels in the retina may swell and leak fluid, however in other people you may develop new vessels on the surface of your retina. This eye disease typically affects both eyes, not just one.

If you are diagnosed by Dr. Massie to have diabetic retinopathy, he will also recommend a treatment to help the progression of this disease which may include more than one visit to the doctor per year. Do not let this go untreated.

To find out how to treat this eye disease, or to make an appointment for your annual checkup, please schedule your appointment with Dr. Massie or Dr. Cuff. Appointments can be made online or by calling:

  1. Creve Coeur, MO Location: 314-878-1377
  2. Swansea, IL Location: 618-234-3053
  3. Alton, IL Location: 618-465-8652

Performance Eyecare has the eyewear to aid your computer vision

Prevent Computer Vision Syndrome

Prevent Computer Vision Syndrome

Did you know October is considered Computer Learning Month? We’re not here to teach you how to use the computer better, but to inform you of computer vision syndrome, especially for children who are likely to use the computer more often.

Take a look at these facts and figures that Gary Heiting, OD and Larry K. Wan, OD of AllAboutVision.com dug up:

  • 94 percent of American families with children have a computer in the home with access to the Internet.*
  • The amount of time children ages 8 to 18 devote to entertainment media (including computer and video games) each day has increased from 6.19 hours in 1999 to 7.38 hours in 2009.**
  • In 2009, 29 percent of American children ages 8 to 18 had their own laptop computer, and kids in grades 7 through 12 reported spending an average of more than 90 minutes a day sending or receiving texts on their cell phones.**

Sitting in front of the computer screen stresses a child’s eyes because it forced them to focus and strain a lot more than any other task. This can put them at an even greater risk than adults for developing symptoms of computer vision syndrome. Read more impressive statistics & ways to protect your child’s eyes from computer damage.

 

Protect Eyes from UV Rays

Ultraviolet rays are a danger to skin and eyes year-round, playing a contributing factor to skin damage, skin cancer and eye disorders such as cataracts. May was UV Awareness Month, but it’s the summer months that are important to keep in mind with kids out of school and outdoor activities planned.

“The more time you spend outdoors without protecting your eyes, the greater your risk for ocular damage,” says Dr. James Winnick, an optometrist with VSP Vision Care, the largest not-for-profit vision benefits company in the United States.

Rather than avoid the problem entirely by seeking refuge inside, take steps to mitigate your risk in the sun.

Consider Risk Factors

While all people need to protect their eyes from UV radiation, some populations are more sensitive than others to the sun. For example, children don’t yet have the natural protection in their eyes that adults have, so they get most of their exposure before they are 18 years old.

Experts say it doesn’t matter who you are, protecting your eyes outdoors is crucial.

Reflecting Light is a Concern

Sunlight is reflected off water, sidewalks, buildings — almost everything — and it goes in every direction. While sunglasses and photochromic lenses protect from UV light passing through the front of the lenses, a new trend in eye protection takes on the back side of lenses as well.

A special anti-reflective treatment can now be added to the back of lenses that helps prevent UV radiation from reflecting off of them and into your eyes. The great news is that some lens brands, like UNITY, offer this “backside UV” treatment at no additional cost depending on the options you choose for your new photochromic lenses.

Don’t wait for UV exposure to get the best of your eye health. Just as you use sunblock, you should have some protection for your eyes throughout the day. This May, take steps to better protect your family.

Sunglasses at Performance Eyecare

At Performance Eyecare, we carry over 700 pairs of high quality and designer eyeglasses and sunglasses in our state-of-the-art optical centers in St. Louis and the Metro East St. Louis, Illinois areas. We have eyeglasses of all price ranges, including high-end fashion frames made from the latest materials.

Some of the designer lines we carry include: Maui Jim, Fossil, X-Games, Lafont, L.A. Eyeworks, Tom Ford, Armani Exchange, Michael Kors, Callaway, Oliver Peoples, Jaguar, Silhouette, OGI and Tom Davies.

All of our eyeglasses are covered by an unconditional warranty and we always stand behind every pair of eyeglasses should you not be completely satisfied.

Click here to schedule an appointment!

 

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! Click here to schedule an appointment with us!

Original article: https://www.vsp.com/eyes.html

Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS)

Computer Vision Syndrome is a condition resulting from extended use of display devices such as computers, tablets, or cell phones. Though often temporary, the condition can result in symptoms such as blurred visions, headaches, redness of the eye, dry eyes, double vision, or dizziness. CVS affects as many as 90% of computer users who spend more than three hours a day at a computer.

Most instances of CVS are caused by one of the following: glares, poor posture, poor lighting, or uncorrected vision problems. To mitigate the effects of extended computer use, doctors recommend following the 20-20-20 rule; take a 20-second break to view something 20 feet away every 20 minutes.

If you think you may be suffering from CVS, schedule an appointment at one of our offices today.

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

25 Fun and Interesting Facts You Didn’t Know About Your Eyes

 

The eye is a fascinating, powerful part of the human body that is surrounded with legend and awe. It is said that they are the windows to our souls, and in ancient culture, they were symbols of spirituality and wisdom.

Because of technological advances in the field of optometry and ophthalmology, we know more about the eyes now than ever!

How much do YOU know about your eyes? The following 25 facts might surprise you! Read on to find out more!

*Your eyes are comprised of over 2 million working parts to make them fully functional.

*The most active muscles in your entire body are the muscles that control the eyes.

*Human corneas are so similar to shark corneas that they have been used as a replacement in human eye surgery.

*Eyes can process about 36,000 bits of information each hour.

*Our eyes are approximately 1 inch across and weigh about ¼ of an ounce.

*An eye blinks over 10,000,000 times in ONE YEAR!

*Our eyes can distinguish between 500 shades of gray.

*Your pupils change in size in order to allow different amounts of light into the eyes.

*Your eyes started to develop only after two weeks you were conceived.

*Your eyes always remain the same size once you are born, but your ears and nose will never stop growing.

*Babies may cry, but they cannot produce tears when they cry until they are between 1 and 3 months old.

*The older we get, the less amount of tears we produce.

*One in every 12 males is colorblind.

*The leading cause of blindness in the United States is diabetes.

*Those who are blind can see their dreams as long as they weren’t born blind.

*The images that are sent to your brain are actually backwards and upside down.

*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, though, because amazingly enough, your eyes work together to help fill in each other’s blind spot!

*Your eyes use about 65% of your brainpower, the most out of ANY body part!

*Every single body part of yours contains blood vessels – every part except for the cornea.

Max Scherzer, pitcher for the Detroit Tigers (and St. Louis native), has heterochromia.

*Some people are born with two differently colored eyes. This condition is known as “heterochromia.” For example, Max Scherzer, pitcher for the Detroit Tigers (and a St. Louis native!), has a brown eye and a blue eye!

*It’s impossible to sneeze with your eyes open (and we wouldn’t recommend trying it).

*Each eyelash has a life span of approximately 5 months.

*It may take time for most of your body to warm up to their full potential every day, but your eyes are ALWAYS on their “A game!”

*Pirates used to wear a gold earring because they believed it would improve their eyesight.

*Doctors have yet to find a way to transplant an eyeball successfully. The optic nerve that connects the eye to the brain is too delicate to successfully reconstruct.

And here’s an extra tip – your eyes are one of the most important parts of your body and should be taken care of properly! So why not provide one of your most important body parts excellent care from Dr. Massie or Dr. Cuff?  Make an appointment today to get your eyes checked and cared for properly! Call Performance Eyecare at (618) 234-3053 or visit our website at www.PerformanceEyecare.com!