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People who need to use contact lenses should make sure they have an eye test at least once every two years so they use the correct prescription.
However, your eye test isn’t just for making sure you are wearing the correct types of contacts, but also for making sure that you don’t have any other eye problems including some eye diseases.
Once of those eye diseases is glaucoma, which if left untreated can lead to blindness. It is caused by a high pressure in the eye, which can damage the nerves. There is a degree of genetic inheritance for people with this condition, so if you have a relative with it you should consider annual eye tests once you reach the age of 40.
It is a disease that generally affects older people, though it has been known for a long time that the earlier treatment is started the more successful it is, as treatment only slows down progression and cannot reverse damage that has already happened.
A new test could revolutionise the prognosis for people with glaucoma as it picks up on the first signs of the disease up to ten years earlier than current diagnostic tools. This earlier diagnosis could help with prognosis, as the earlier treatment is started, the less damage will be done to the eye. This could mean the end of blindness caused by glaucoma.
The optician would inject a florescent dye, and then look for damage on the nerves, which could be an early sign of glaucoma.
As we get older, our eyesight is likely to change but if you’re worried about it deteriorating to a point where you’re unable to see easily, you might want to try out a new smartphone app that promises to improve your vision.
The GlassesOff program has been designed to help you put your reading glasses down for good by enhancing the image processing function of your brain. It’s aimed at people who experience vision problems when reading, such as fatigue headaches, eye strain or blurred eyesight, as well as those who are worried about their vision deteriorating in the near future and want to prevent the need for reading glasses.
The app itself was developed by a team of neuroscientists specialising in solutions in the field of human vision. Once you’ve had your five-minute vision evaluation, you can start training three days a week. Apparently, you can expect to see results after 20 sessions – and if you do have concerns about your vision, it certainly couldn’t hurt to try it out.
Advice from the developers to help you train your eyes includes doing a session when you’re alert and not tired, and using dim lighting conditions. Hold the device around 40cm from your eyes and no more for best results.
If you use reading glasses, don’t wear them during training and try not to use them throughout the day. If you use distance glasses, you should wear these each time you start a training session.
To help you avoid using your glasses during the day, increase the font sizes on your computer and your smartphone, and use strong lighting when reading.
Check out the Optipak online store if you need new contact lense cases.
It’s vital that you know how to look after your contact lenses properly so that you’re protecting your eyesight – yet it seems that many people out there are still unaware of how to do this, highlighting the importance of good hygiene and the use of contact lense cases.
According to a new BBC report, former travel company director Irenie Ekkeshis lost the sight in one of her eyes after handling her lenses with wet fingers. After visiting the doctor believing she had a little infection that would clear up quickly, she was told she had acanthamoeba keratitis, an eye infection caused by microorganisms in tap water, swimming pools and sea water.
It affects approximately 125 people in the UK each year, with the majority of cases associated with contact lens use – which may be a stark warning to many out there who are perhaps less concerned with hygiene when it comes to using their lenses.
Ms Ekkeshis said: “I hadn’t had a shower or gone swimming in my lenses. But I learned that even washing your hands and not drying them properly before handling lenses can cause it.”
Before applying your lenses, make sure you wash your hands thoroughly but don’t use oily or scented soap as this can stick to the surface of the lens. When removing them, always wash your hands and dry them properly before touching the lenses. Always keep your lenses in a proper storage case and clean and disinfect both regularly, following your optician’s instructions.
Never put your lenses in your mouth or use saliva to wet them, don’t top up the old solution in your lens case (instead throw the old solution away and replace it completely), and always rub your lenses when you clean them even if you’re using a no-rub solution.
Anyone who wears contact lenses will have heard their optician telling them never to sleep in their contact lenses, but sometimes you might feel as though you have no option – such as if you end up having an unplanned night away from home and don’t have a contact lens case or solution to hand.
But one eye expert has warned that this is a terrible idea, and that you should always remove your lenses before going to bed.
Speaking to Refinery29, Laura DiMeglio, OD, an ophthalmology instructor at Johns Hopkins University, explained that wearing lenses overnight can stop your eyes being able to ‘breathe’. Your cornea gets its oxygen from the air and having the extra barrier of a contact lens as well as your eyelid overnight can mean it doesn’t get the oxygen it needs.
This can result in breaks in the surface of your cornea, which let bacteria in and this in turn can cause infections.
So if you don’t have your contact lens case and solution with you, is there anything you can do? Dr DiMeglio says that there’s no substitute for a proper sterile solution. Tap water is certainly not a good alternative.
Irenie Ekkeshis recently told the BBC how she lost the sight in one eye after an infection developed in her cornea. It was caused by a micro-organism common in tap, sea and swimming pool water and although rare, the majority of cases affect those who wear contact lenses.
Ms Ekkeshis was told that her infection could have been caused by handling her contact lenses with wet hands. She has since set up a campaign to warn people about the dangers of exposing their lenses to water.
Make sure you pack a contact lens case for your next campaign trip, to avoid being left stranded without your visual aids.
If you really can’t stand wearing glasses, or need to wear contact lenses so you can show of your snazzy new sunglasses this summer, then make sure you are properly equipped for next camping trip with a contact lens case.
There has recently been a rise in the number of contact lens wearers presenting to doctors with Acanthamoeba keratitis eye infections, which are a result of not cleaning your contact lenses properly. Moorfields Eye Hospital launched a campaign to make people more aware of this a couple of years ago, and laid out some tips for avoiding it.
It is particularly important you adhere to these tips when camping as you are away from your normal conditions and options to clean them may be limited.
Make sure you are using your contact lenses appropriately, and not swimming with contacts in for example. You may also want to make sure you don’t have them in while you are in the campsite showers as that can also lead to infections.
Bring along your normal supplies but make sure you can clean your hands with soap and water. If this isn’t possible, then don’t use your contacts.
Wear glasses if necessary. You may need to bring along an old pair just in case you lose your contacts, or you aren’t sure if you can keep them sufficiently clean.
As a supplier of contact lenses and contact lens cases, your customers good eye health will be of the utmost importance to you and they’ll no doubt come to you for advice and guidance on it. Therefore, it’s good to educate yourself on any matters which might come up in conversation, and in coming years, this new topic is sure to get tongues wagging.
According to Fox32
, a US company has set up a new online vision test, which works by connecting your phone to your computer, asking questions and testing your sight with certain visual cues. It will then sell you a prescription based on the results.
For the customer to whom booking an eye test is an unwelcome chore, this might sound like the perfect remedy, as well as offering an alternative for regular re-testing to check if your eyesight, and therefore your prescription, has changed.
Currently, this service, called Opternative, is available in 39 of the 50 United States, and is a concept that’s growing in popularity.
However, critics of the technology say that it is no comparison to a professional eye test. Dr. Eric Baas, ophthalmologist with the Illinois College of Optometry, is concerned about the tests missing serious eye conditions: “This test doesn’t even cover one single element of the 12 elements that make up a comprehensive eye exam which opens the door for the potential to miss potential sight threatening diseases such as glaucoma, macular degeneration or cataracts.”
Many customers have been happy with the service, and whether it makes an impact in the UK or not is yet to be seen.
The short answer is yes, but you may be intrigued to know why and how the humble orange vegetable can improve your eye health.
An article in < a href="http://www.foods4betterhealth.com/are-carrots-good-for-your-eyes-32233">Foods4BetterHealth recently highlighted the many benefits that carrots provide, including protecting your eyesight.
Protecting is possibly a better way to describe what carrots do, rather than improving, with the website noting that carrots are rich in vitamin A, which is important for our eyes. A deficiency of this particular vitamin has been identified as one of the main causes of a number of eyesight problems, including cataracts, macular degeneration and xerophthalmia.
But vitamin A isn’t the only thing in carrots that’s good for our eyes. The vegetable also contains the antioxidants lutein and zeaxanthin. Both of these are known to increase the density of a pigment that protects the retina.
So, it stands to reason that consuming more of these antioxidants will help look after our retina, and therefore our sight. This is particularly important for preventing macular degeneration, the website added.
While carrots being good for our eyes is more than just an old wive’s tale, there are other foods that can also help protect our eyesight.
According to Foods4BetterHealth, green leafy vegetables also contain high levels of these antioxidants, while eggs are a good source of lutein and vitamin A. Sunflower seeds, whole grains, legumes and fish were among the other foods identified by the website as being good for our eye health.
With recent research showing that children who spend too much time looking at digital screens are < a href="http://optipak.net/contact-lens-cases-much-screen-time-damaging-childrens-eyes/">damaging their eyesight, it might not be a bad time to think about how you can boost children’s eye health with their diets, as well as by limiting their screentime.
If you do need contact lenses, make sure you take care of them too. Get stylish < a href="http://optipak.net/product-range/">contact lense cases to protect them when you’re not wearing them.
While it’s true that transferring your lenses from contact lens case to eye isn’t the easiest job when you start out, don’t be put off wearing them – you’ll get the hand of it in the end and soon it’ll become second nature.
If you need some evidence of the fact, meet John Lien Margetis a double amputee from Los Angeles who made headline news this week in the likes of the Daily Mail with his amazing technique for putting in his lenses.
Margetis released this video last week, saying “As an amputee, I’m frequently asked how I do things” and the video quickly went viral down to his incredible dexterity.
The video shows him pick up the lens with a pair of tweezers before transferring to the end of his arm, lastly popping them in with a call of ‘ta-da!’
At the time of writing, the video has been watched 75,000 times and YouTube fans are loving getting this perspective on how someone with a disability may have to innovate in putting in contact lenses.
Margetis was born with congenital amputations of both arms, but clearly has evolved his own ways of doing everyday tasks.
His YouTube channel also features videos such as writing, typing and riding a bike so far, but now, with some viral fame on his side, we’re surely going to see more incredible videos from him.
This video is inspiring in lots of ways, least of all as a good example to those moaning that they can’t get their contacts in at first.
This month (March) sees the launch of World Glaucoma Week, taking place between the 12th and the 18th, intended to help raise awareness of the condition, while encouraging national health authorities to come up with an action plan that combats glaucoma blindness and produce educational material about it that features the most current expert content available.
It’s expected that the number of people developing glaucoma will rise to 76 million come the year 2020, up from the estimated 64.3 million back in 2013. In order to combat this, “enormous efforts” will be required over the next ten years to overcome the impact of the condition around the world – as such, new strategies must be brought out mandatorily, related to glaucoma screening, diagnosis, treatment and rehab.
Glaucoma is a group of eye diseases that result in progressive damage of the optic nerve. If left untreated, the majority of the different glaucoma types progress to gradually worsening eyesight damage and could result in blindness. Once this visual damage has been incurred, it is irreversible for the most part – which is why glaucoma is often described as the “sneak thief of sight”.
It’s actually the second most common cause of blindness around the world, with some 4.5 million people globally blind because of it. Some forms can occur at birth or during infancy and childhood, but the majority appear after people hit their 50s and the frequency of the condition does increase with age. There is no known cure as yet and the vision loss is irreversible, but medication and surgery can halt or slow the progress of any vision loss.
Do you need new contact lens cases? Pick some up on the Optipak site now .
Children are spending too much time staring at screens and that’s leading to eye damage, according to optometrists and clinical psychologists in New Zealand.
Newshub reported on a survey conducted by Specsavers, which found that one in five children in New Zealand are spending as much as 35 hours per week staring at screens. That’s nearly the equivalent of having a full-time job.
Speaking to the news provider, optometrist Ayah Hadi explained optometrists are seeing increasing numbers of young people with eye problems.
“We’re seeing more and more children who are at risk of eye damage and are becoming more short-sighted or myopic,” she explained.
Ms Hadi added that this means a growing number of children in New Zealand are likely to need glasses, or who will have to carry out eye exercises to strengthen their vision.
Because children’s eyes are still developing, they are at greater risk of developing problems from prolonged exposure to screens than adults.
Earlier this month, the Daily Mail reported on research conducted in Spain, which highlighted the potential dangers of spending too much time looking at screens.
According to researchers at the University Complutense in Madrid, the high energy light emitted by digital screens is irreversibly damaging our retinas. They added that children who use tablets are particularly vulnerable, because they hold the devices so close to their faces and this increases the amount of short-wave light their eyes receive.
If you have to wear contact lenses, make sure you’re protecting them as well as your eyes with the best contact lens cases available.