Q: If I only use my contacts once in a while, is it okay that I dont replace them for a few months?
A: Would it be okay to drink expired milk from the jug, just because you hadnt touched it in months?
NO! Its not okay. Certain foods, and certain materials have EXPIRATION DATES for a reason. Studies and tests have been performed to give appropriate timelines on how long it takes for something to spoil. To prevent infections and harmful health risks, we should follow these simple rules.
The second you crack open the seal to that contact lens blister pack, bacteria have been introduced to a previously sterile environment, and the clock starts ticking!
If it is a monthly lens, throw it away every 30-31 days. If its Acuvue Oasys, throw it away every 2 weeks. If its a Daily Lens, throw it away every night. Don’t reuse old lenses past their recomended usage, just to save a couple bucks and stretch your lenses out longer. A bad infection can get nasty, cause permanent vision loss, or even a loss of that eye. Its serious stuff. Be responsible. It’s not worth cutting a few corners.
Q: When should my Childs eyes be tested?
A: Children are developing quite rapidly. Just as quickly as they are outgrowing their old clothes, their eyeballs are changing shape and growing along with their body. The developmental period of a child is very important in forming strong and healthy connections between the brain and the eyes. If those pathways are not made correctly it may alter your childs vision and performance in school and in life.
Doctors recommend that children get their first eye exam after 6months of age. Their next exam should be at ages 3, 5, and annually thereafter. By the time a child enters school, they should have already seen the optometrist three times. Even if your child sees clearly and has no eye problems, they should still be tested regularly. This will ensure longterm healthy vision. Any issues during development can be managed easier when caught early.
Q: Am I a good candidate for Laser Surgery?
A: There are many factors that make an individual a good candidate for laser eye surgery. Some factors include: overall health of the body, health of the eyes, thickness of corneas (front of the eye), prescription strength, prescription stability, age of individual, expectations from surgery. All these can be discussed and examined with your optometrist. An eye doctor can review your surgical options and recommend the best treatment that is suitable for you.
Q: I have diabetes/ high blood pressure. I dont like to take medications. I only take the meds when I need them. Will my eyes become affected?
A: Altering your medications without your doctors consent is not a good idea. You have been placed on your medications to control a disease or condition in your body. If you dont prefer medications, please review those concerns with your family doctor so they can provide an acceptable alternative. If you go on and off your medications based on how you are feeling at the time, the condition will escalate and can lead to hospitalization. These types of diseases do not have a cure. They are treated and managed with medications. If you discontinue the meds, then the condition will no longer be controlled. Uncontrolled body conditions such as diabetes, hypertension, and thyroid can definitely affect the eyes in a negative manner. Talk to your family doctor if you are unhappy with your current treatment.
Q: My child is very active in sports. His/her glasses are getting destroyed. Is he/she able to wear contacts?
A: Eyeglasses have glass and metal that can injure the face and the eyes in high impact sports. Contacts lenses are a great alternative to corrective eyeglasses for physical activities. However, they do not protect the eyes from injury. Special sports goggles are designed to be worn in these situations to prevent injuries.
Contacts lenses can be worn by almost everybody. The main quality we look for in a child for contact lens fittings is Maturity and Responsibility. If your child is mature and responsible enough to take care of contact lenses, clean them, and dispose them as required, then they may be great candidate for contacts. We must understand that contact lenses can be a risk to a child’s eye health if handled without care.
If contact lenses are going to be the main form of correction, the child will still need a backup pair of eyeglasses for situations that may call to discontinue contact lens wear (ie. eye infections). They will also need to wear special protective eye goggles over the contact lenses. Therefore, contact lenses should not be used to replace a childs eyeglasses, but to add another option to the existing pair.
Ask an optometrist about the responsibilities of contact lens care and if your child is a good fit for contacts.
Q: Why is my (or my child’s) prescription changing so much and so quickly?
A: Typical causes are: (1) Growth: as your body grows, and spurts, many changes are also occuring within the eyes. The eyeballs are also growing and changing shape, and therefore prescription changes can occur. (2) Genetics: if mom and dad wear glasses, the child or teenager is also more likely to reach that similar prescription as they age. (3) How you use your eyes: If you are doing a lot of near work at school, work and home, then you are placing your eyes in strain most of the day. Eyes that are continually focused on near activities without taking frequent breaks in-between tasks, will likely become more and more near-sighted with time.
Taking frequent breaks and relaxing your eyes from the near work is optimal to achieve stability in your prescription. You can discuss your particular workplace needs with an optometrist to fine tune your visual habits.
Q: Why is it that when I use the computer for a long time, my eyes feel irritated and my vision changes?
A: Computer vision syndrome is a problem for many people that are in front of the computer screen. Their eyes become dry, gritty, painful, heavy, tired, and sometimes watery. They may also experience blurry vision and headaches.
Relief can be acheived with a combination of special computer glasses and dry eye treatment. A good start is by getting a full comprehensive eye examination by an optometrist. A computer prescription will be made for you to use on the computer. Coatings can be used to eliminate the glare and reflections off the computer screen. The dry eye component from computer use will also need attention. The dry eye symptoms involved with computer use arise from the fact that ones blink rate decreases by almost 50% when on the computer. This allows your tears to evaporate much quicker, therefore, drying your eyes. A dry eye treatment regimen will be customized to you for your particular dry eye symptoms.