Family Eye Health & Contact Lens Center

All About Vision – Seeing More Clearly

What You Need to Know About Specialty Contact Lenses for Halloween

With Halloween around the corner many people are beginning to think about what kind of costume or illusion they want to create for the big day!  Some of the more elaborate costumes may involve wearing some type of contact lens to complete the outfit and or give that unworldly appearance a big boost. So where do you begin? What do you need to know before getting your contacts?  There are a few really important things to consider, after all this is going on your eye, and no one wants to end up with permanent vision issues from a night of fun.

The first and most important thing you should do is see your eye doctor, even if your contacts do not have a prescription in them, there are still factors you may not be aware of.  Eyes are very unique, like finger prints, they come in different sizes and curvatures and so do contact lenses.  If the contact lens fits the eye too tightly or loosely it can cause damage to the cornea (the front surface of the eye) which could result in permanent vision issues, worse case scenario is corneal transplant or even blindness.  There are also correct ways of getting them on and off your eye, without the proper training and education you could be doing major damage to your eyes and your contact lenses. You also need to know how to clean and store your contacts properly to ensure you don’t get infections of the eye, or rip your contact lenses.  There are many types of contact lenses available today, made in many types of materials, some better than others for your eyes.  Your Optometrist can discuss all the options with you and help you to make your Halloween costume the hit of the party while keeping your eyes safe!


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Are You Children Prepared for Back to School?

Once again, Summer is coming to a close and children are getting ready to head back to school for another year of education and learning. How can we, as parents, best prepare our children for the academic challenges of the school year ahead?  Aside from having all the usual back to school paraphernalia; back packs, note books, organizers, calculators and pencils, don’t we owe it to our kids to make sure their vision is the best that it could be?

What’s most interesting is that 50% of our brain’s processing power is devoted to seeing and vision.  It is a well know fact that 80% of all we learn is VISUAL, and if a child has a vision deficits they could be falling behind the learning curve. The Vision Counsel of America reports that 1 in every 4 children has a vision problem that can interfere with learning and behavior.  Another study shows a whopping 85% of America’s pre-schoolers haven’t received a vision exam by age five. And a pre-kindergarten exam is a must (don’t assume school-offered vision screenings are enough). Studies also show that 60% of students identified as problem learners have undetected vision troubles.

There are many types of vision issues that a typical pediatric screening will not address or find.  The only way to be sure that your child vision is working it’s best is to have a comprehensive eye exam with an Optometrist.  Aside from looking at refractive issues of the eye (the prescription), an Optometrist will assess how the eyes work together, look closely at all the internal structures of the eye and their function, check for color blindness issues (1 in 10 males have some form of color blindness), and assess peripheral vision.  Lazy eye, is the most common cause of visual impairment in childhood and if caught early can most times be corrected.  The good news is that annual eye exams can protect your child’s vision, their overall health and their education.

If your child is displaying any of the following symptoms or behaviors, you may want to take them in to an eye doctor for a comprehensive exam:

  • Dislike or avoidance of reading
  • Short attention span
  • Poor coordination when throwing or catching a ball, copying from chalkboard, or tying their shoes
  • Placing their head close to their books or sitting close to the TV
  • Excessive blinking or eye rubbing
  • Using finger or pencil to guide eyes
  • Decreasing performance in school

Your child does not have the ability to understand or describe vision problems.  If they have never experienced what good vision is, how can they know the difference?  Have peace of mind about your child’s vision this new school year by getting them in for a comprehensive eye exam with your local Optometrist!

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Adverse Effects of Heat on Eyewear

Here in the height of summer, with the warm temperatures and a plethora of sunny days, I have noticed an increase of people coming in to see me with eyewear and sunwear issues caused by prolonged exposure to the sun and heat especially when left in cars.

Most of us will keep a pair of back up glasses and more commonly our sunglasses in our cars.  With the warmer than normal temperatures that the entire country has been experiencing this year, it has caused eyeglass lenses to craze, crackle or delaminate and plastic frames to melt to the point of being ruined.   It can make the best anti-glare look like crackle coating in a matter of hours with exposure to extreme heat.  The reason is that the excessive heat will cause the lens material to expand much more than is normal and when it begins to cool any coating or lens treatments on the lens will contract down to normal size and crackle making your viewing experience less than perfect.

On an 85 degree day, your car can achieve internal temperatures as high as 150 degrees in less than a couple of hours!  It’s no wonder that plastic eyewear frames will become melted, then become brittle and break after prolonged exposure in these kinds of temperatures.  Keeping your eyewear in a case or compartment will not protect them from super heating either, over time they will show signs of heat damage.  The best rule of thumb for the hottest days of summer is to bring your prescription eyewear inside with you, especially if it has anti-glare on the lenses or if the frame is plastic.

Melted glasses; aside from being costly to replace, it’s annoying to look through crackled lenses, not to mention being uncomfortable wearing a warped frame. Be kind to your eyewear and keep them inside during those dog days of summer!


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The New Fashion for Eyewear is Vintage

As many of you have probably noticed lately, whether you see it on TV, in Hollywood, within the music industry and even in professional sports; there is a definite trend towards the vintage look in eyewear today.  Common place 60’s styles like the aviator, cat eye and wayfarer are reborn again for the modern fashion market made in vivid colors, given cleaner lines or made chunky for the ever popular “Geek Chic” look. Whether you are a Baby Boomer who loves them for the nostalgia of our youth, Gen X, or Gen Y who want that cool, new, bold fashion statement for their wardrobe. All age groups seem to find something appealing about vintage!

While it might seem logical to blame the deteriorating eyesight of the aging baby boomer or the ever increasing computer and smartphone induced strain on our eyes, consumer behavior statistics don’t show a jump in the number of people who need prescriptions. What they do show is an increase in the number of people who wear glasses without prescription lenses — presumably to look cool.

As we look forward to the fall and winter, fashion trends continue to model chunky, color blocked, bolder, “look at me” styles. Everything from rich tortoise shell to colorful patterned eyewear, fun and flirty, and attention getting. The colour trends for fall 2012 aren’t all cloudy greys or cheerless blues. If the colour trend predictions are anything to go by, our wardrobes will be filled with traditional fall tones punctuated by optimistic pops of bright colour.  Hot colors for this fall and winter in clothing and accessories will be; honey gold, pink flambe, tangerine, ultramarine green, chartreuse, olympian blue, titanium, rose smoke, french roast brown according to Pantone.



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