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8 Ways Your Eyes Change With Age

Our eyes and vision change with age. Your eye doctor can monitor these changes — some of which are a natural part of the aging process — and identify any eye conditions or diseases early enough to treat them and prevent vision loss. Read on to learn more about the different types of eye changes one may encounter with age.

Age-Related Eye Conditions and Diseases

Cataracts

If your vision is starting to get blurry, you may be developing cataracts. There are a few types of cataracts, but the one usually caused by aging is known as a “nuclear cataract”. At first, it may lead to increased nearsightedness or even a temporary improvement in your reading vision. But with time, the lens gradually turns more densely yellow and clouds your vision. As the cataract slowly progresses, the lens may even turn brown. Advanced yellowing or browning of the lens can lead to difficulty distinguishing between shades of color, and left untreated, it can eventually lead to blindness. Luckily, cataract surgery, where the cloudy lens is replaced with a clear lens, is an extremely safe and effective treatment option.

Blepharoptosis

Blepharoptosis or ptosis is a drooping of the upper eyelid that may affect one or both eyes. The eyelid may droop only slightly or may droop enough to cover the pupil and block vision. It occurs when there is a weakness of the eye’s levator muscle that lifts the eyelid. This condition is usually caused by aging, eye surgery, or disease affecting the muscle or its nerve. Fortunately, blepharoptosis can be corrected with surgery.

Vitreous detachment

This occurs when the gel-like vitreous fluid inside the eye begins to liquefy and pull away from the retina, causing “spots and floaters” and, sometimes, flashes of light. This occurrence is usually harmless, but floaters and flashes of light can also signal the beginning of a detached retina — a serious problem that can cause blindness, and requires immediate treatment. If you experience sudden or worsening flashes and increased floaters, see Dr. Carole Burns immediately to determine the cause.

Other Age-Related Changes

In addition to the above eye conditions and diseases, the structure of our eyes and vision change as we get older.

Presbyopia

Why do people in their 40s and 50s have more difficulty focusing on near objects like books and phone screens? The lens inside the eye begins to lose its ability to change shape and bring near objects into focus, a process is called presbyopia. Over time, presbyopia, also known as age-related farsightedness, will become more pronounced and you will eventually need reading glasses to see clearly. You may need multiple prescriptions – one prescription to enable you to see up close, one for intermediate distance, and one for distance vision. In that case, people often get bifocals, multifocals or PALs, and they can be combined with contact lenses as well.

Reduced pupil size

As we age, our reaction to light and the muscles that control our pupil size lose some strength. This causes the pupil to become smaller and less responsive to changes in ambient lighting. The result? It becomes harder to clearly see objects, such as a menu, in a low-light setting like a restaurant.

Dry eye

Our tear glands produce fewer tears and the tears they produce have less moisturizing oils. Your eye doctor can determine whether your dry eye is age-related or due to another condition, and will recommend the right over-the-counter or prescription eye drops, or other effective and lasting treatments, to alleviate the dryness and restore comfort.

Loss of peripheral vision

Aging causes a 1-3 degree loss of peripheral vision per decade of life. In fact, one may reach a peripheral visual field loss of 20-30 degrees by the time they reach their 70s and 80s. While peripheral vision loss is a normal part of aging, it can also indicate the presence of a serious eye disease, like glaucoma. The best way to ascertain the cause is by getting an eye exam.

Decreased color vision

The cells in the retina responsible for normal color vision tend to decline as we age, causing colors to become less bright and the contrast between different colors to be less noticeable. Though a normal part of aging, faded colors can at times signal a more serious ocular problem.

Beyond the normal changes that come with age, the risk of developing a serious eye disease, such as age related macular degeneration and glaucoma, increases. Routine eye exams are essential to keeping your eyes healthy. Your eye doctor can determine whether your symptoms are caused by an eye problem or are a normal byproduct of aging.

If you or a loved one suffers from impaired vision, we can help. To find out more and to schedule your annual eye doctor’s appointment, contact Professional VisionCare in Lewis Center today.

Why Does Your Eye Doctor Dilate Your Pupils for an Eye Exam?

If you’ve been following the guideline to have regular eye exams, then you’re probably familiar with having your pupils dilated. Why does your eye doctor do this?

By dilating your pupils, the eye doctor can get a better view of your inner eye structures – so the eye exam is more comprehensive and more detailed. While the back of your eye can be seen through an undilated pupil, it cannot be examined as fully.

A full evaluation of your macula, retina and optic nerve is possible through dilated pupils. In many common eye diseases, such as macular degeneration, diabetic retinopathy and glaucoma, these are the parts of the eye that exhibit signs of a problem. Also, health conditions such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol and diabetes can often be detected on these parts of the eye.

What happens when the eye doctor dilates your pupils?

Your eye doctor or a technician will insert eye drops into your eyes; it takes 20 – 30 minutes for them to take full effect. Then, your eye doctor will use a lighted microscope to inspect your eyes.

Initially, you may feel a slight stinging when the drops are first inserted, but the discomfort is typically minor and short-lived. For a few hours afterwards, your eyes will be extra-sensitive to light and vision may be slightly blurred. Wearing sunglasses can help manage this sensitivity. Dilation usually wears off within four to six hours.

Even though getting your pupils dilated for an eye exam may feel like a nuisance, it enables your eye doctor to check your ocular health and overall body health with much more accuracy. So the benefits are clear! Contact an expert eye doctor near you to schedule an eye exam.

At Professional VisionCare, we put your family’s needs first. Talk to us about how we can help you maintain healthy vision. Call us today: 614-898-9989 or book an appointment online to see one of our Lewis Center eye doctors.

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 Why a New Pair of Glasses Is NOT the Best Holiday Gift for Your Child

girl hugging her present 3154363If your child is nearsighted (myopic), it may seem like a great idea to get him or her a new pair of glasses. They will surely improve how well your child sees but, unfortunately, will do nothing to slow myopia progression. You can offer your child MUCH more than a pair of specs — something that will ensure long term vision health care and quality of life: Myopia Management.

Myopia Management is made up of several treatments designed to slow down how quickly myopia, or shortsightedness, progresses. In other words, their prescription will remain the same as they grow older. The treatments include uniquely designed multifocal contact lenses, atropine eye drops, and orthokeratology (“ortho-k”). Evidence suggests that myopia management can reduce the progression of myopia by up to 60% after two years of treatment.

What Makes Myopia Management An Excellent Gift?

Currently, myopia is among the leading causes of permanent vision loss and legal blindness.

As a child quickly develops and their nearsighted vision worsens, the child is at a higher risk of developing dangerous eye diseases later in life, such as retinal detachment, macular degeneration, glaucoma, and cataracts.

To thwart any of these sight-robbing conditions, Myopia Management Center At Professional Vision Care offers evidence-based treatment to prevent the onset or reduce the progression of myopia in our pediatric patients.

Myopia management enables your child to experience a more mild form of myopia than he or she would have otherwise had without treatment. Having mild-degree myopia means that your child’s likelihood of developing retinal detachment or macular degeneration is dramatically reduced.

So why don’t you make this holiday gift a particularly special one by protecting your child’s precious gift of sight. And the best part? It will pay off well after the holidays are over.

On behalf of Dr. Carole Burns and the staff at Myopia Management Center At Professional Vision Care in Lewis Center, we’d like to wish you all the best for the holiday season and the New Year!

woman holding eyeIs It Eye Allergies or Dry Eyes?

Eye Allergy and Dry Eye symptoms tend to be very similar. They both include redness, itchiness, tearing, and a gritty or burning sensation in the eyes.

 

Is it really an allergic reaction, or could it be Dry Eyes? Before running to the pharmacy for some antihistamines, it would be worth digging into the cause of these reactions in order to assure that you’re choosing the right treatment option.

If you’ve been using artificial tears, prescription allergy medication, or other over the counter medicine to relieve the itchy, dry feeling, but see no improvement— it may be worth visiting the Dry Eye Center At Professional Vision Care and speaking with Dr. Carole Burns, who can provide a diagnosis and solution for your condition.

What’s the Difference Between Eye Allergies and Dry Eyes?

Eye allergies, also known as allergic conjunctivitis, occur when the eyes react to elements that irritate them (allergens). One can develop eye allergies from pet dander, dust, pollen, smoke, perfumes, or even certain foods. To fight off the allergen, the eyes produce a substance called histamine, which causes the eyelids to become red, swollen and itchy — and at times to tear and burn. Those with eye allergies tend to experience nasal allergies as well, which include an itchy, stuffy nose, along with frequent sneezing.

People with Dry Eyes suffer from eyes that feel dry, itchy, swollen, irritated, and at times very painful. Dry eye syndrome can be developed as a result of genetics, age, environment, lifestyle, medications, and the overall health of your eyes. When one has dry eyes, the eyes are either not producing enough tears to keep your eye lubricated, or the tears are not composed of the correct balance of water, lipids, and mucous to maintain proper lubrication.

How Are Eye Allergies and Dry Eyes Treated?

eye drops

Eye allergies can be treated using artificial tears, medicated eye drops, decongestants, antihistamines, or anti-inflammatory medications. Depending on your specific case, Dr. Carole Burns may recommend a combination of treatments.

However, if it is determined that you have dry eyes, Dr. Carole Burns may suggest artificial tears or lubricant eye drops to alleviate the discomfort, and in some cases, may even prescribe drops or steroids. For patients with more acute cases of dry eyes, the doctor might suggest alternative treatment options, such as LipiFlow, True Tear, TearCare or scleral lenses.

If you’re suffering from any of the above symptoms, speak with , who will examine and thoroughly assess the source of these reactions, determine whether they are caused by allergies or Dry Eyes, and provide the right treatment.

The Dry Eye Center At Professional Vision Care services patients from Lewis Center, Westerville, Johnstown, Northeast Columbus, and throughout Ohio.

Spring Dry Eyes

woman applying eyedroppers, close upSpring is a time of renewal, when the harsh winter is just a memory and the outdoors seem to beckon us to go outside. While spring may be in the air, so are allergens. Allergies during the spring season can cause dry eyes and have a particularly severe effect on people with Dry Eye Syndrome.

During the spring months, pollen, pet dander, mold, and dust can be found in the air. These airborne allergens can trigger uncomfortable reactions like itchy, red, and watery eyes, as well as sneezing and sinus congestion. At The Practice Name Dry Eye Center, we can offer you long-term relief for your seasonal dry eyes.

How Do The Seasons Affect Dry Eyes?

Although certain people with sensitivities to allergens may be more prone to allergic reactions, the seasons of the year can trigger these responses, too. In the winter, for instance, dry eyes can develop in people who live in climates with a lot of dry, cold air or strong winds. Sitting in direct aim of a heater may feel wonderful when it’s cold, but it can also dry out the eyes. In the summer when the heat is intense and people run their air conditioning systems regularly, dry eyes can develop from being in the direction of cold air.

A 5-year study found that 21% of the 3.4 million visits to an eye doctor during that time were related to dry eyes. Each year, there was a peak during April, proving that there is a likely correlation between allergens and dry eye cases.

Common Symptoms Of Seasonal Dry Eyes

The most common symptoms of dry eyes in the spring are:

  • Blurry vision
  • Burning
  • Gritty feeling
  • Itchiness
  • Redness
  • Stinging
  • Soreness
  • Watery eyes

It may seem odd, but watery eyes are a frequent symptom of dry eyes. It’s the body’s way of trying to self-heal the dryness by releasing excess tears, a condition called Keratoconjunctivitis Sicca (KCS). This condition gives some relief, but because these tears contain an inadequate amount of water, the relief is temporary and more long-lasting options are needed.

If you’re experiencing any of these symptoms, schedule an appointment with The Practice Name Dry Eye Center. We have the knowledge, years of experience, latest technologies, and effective solutions to give you relief for your dry eyes this spring season.

Relief For Dry Eyes In The Springtime

Close up of blue eyeDry Eye Doctor Name treats patients from all over CITY 1, State who are suffering from seasonal dry eyes. Depending on your specific case and the intensity of your symptoms, the doctor may recommend daily artificial tears or lubricant eye drops to alleviate the pain. These can stimulate your eye’s natural tear production to moisturize the eyes and provide comfort. In some cases, prescription drops or steroids can produce similar results.

For patients with severe types of dry eyes, the doctor may talk to you about punctual plugs. These are tiny devices that are inserted inside the tear duct. They block your tears from draining out, which forces them to stay in your eye, coating and moisturizing the area.

Have you heard about scleral lenses? These are contact lenses that are made from rigid materials and contain a tiny pool of water, which provides moisture to dry eyes. Scleral lenses have a large diameter that covers the entire sclera (white part of the eye) without touching the cornea, so they can fit more comfortably. Because each person’s eye is unique, scleral lenses must be custom-fitted for each patient.

When It’s More Than Allergies

If your symptoms persist long after spring is over, and especially if they worsen, this may indicate signs of a more serious eye condition.

Examples can include any of the following:

  • Blepharitis (inflamed eyelids)
  • Conjunctivitis (pink eye)
  • Corneal Abrasions
  • Dry Eye Disease
  • Styes (an oil gland infection that causes a bump in the eyelid

We hope you take the time to enjoy this spring season. Should you experience any visual discomfort or are naturally prone to dry eyes, contact Dry Eye Doctor Name and the caring staff at The Practice Name Dry Eye Center. We’ll examine your eyes and discuss your personal needs to create an action plan that’s right for you.



Why Does My Child Need a Routine Pediatric Eye Exam?

Brother and Sister Outdoors

Our Children’s Eye Doctor Explains

You may be surprised to learn that vision problems in children are extremely common. In fact, up to one quarter of school-age kids have a vision disorder, and many of these disorders can have significant effects on learning. When undetected or left untreated, many pediatric vision conditions can lead to educational, developmental, and behavioral problems.

Now, you may be thinking – my child isn’t complaining about any visual trouble, so everything must be OK. Unfortunately, that’s a common misconception. Many vision conditions in kids don’t present obvious signs, and they are not detected during standard vision testing by a school nurse. Also, kids tend to adapt to what they see – so they aren’t even aware that they may not be seeing their world clearly. Therefore, the only reliable way to know if your child’s visual system is functioning optimally is to have a pediatric eye exam performed by a qualified children’s eye doctor.

Common Conditions Diagnosed by a Pediatric Eye Exam

During your child’s eye test at our Lewis Center office, our Ohio eye doctor will check for a range of conditions, all of which can interfere with learning and development. Depending upon the patient’s age, we will use different diagnostic technologies and techniques. Here are some of the conditions that we look out for:

  • Refractive conditions: nearsightedness (myopia), farsightedness (hyperopia), and astigmatism
  • Amblyopia: also known as “lazy eye,” kid can suffer from reduced vision in either one or both eyes
  • Strabismus: misaligned eyes (such as “crossed eyes”), due to a weakness or improper positioning of the eye muscles; when untreated, strabismus can cause permanent visual disabilities
  • Binocularity problems: a deficiency in eye-teaming, which can affect depth perception and coordination; generally, binocularity problems are subtler than strabismus
  • Convergence insufficiency: difficulty keeping eyes aligned for reading or other tasks done with near vision
  • Accommodation problems: trouble focusing, especially when switching between near and far

Sharp Vision is a Basis for Sharp Performance

Simply stated, if your child can’t see clearly – he or she can’t perform at their best. Sharp vision is an essential foundation for learning in the classroom, socializing with confidence, and playing well on the sports field. By bringing your children (of any age) for a yearly pediatric eye exam at Professional VisionCare Lewis Center, you are helping them reach their full potential and succeed in life. Also, the longer a pediatric vision condition remains untreated, the more your child’s brain learns to adapt to the problem – and the harder it can be to treat! So don’t delay, book regular appointments with your children’s eye doctor.

Vision for Teens and Tweens

During the tween and teen years, a diagnosis that requires prescription eyewear for treatment can be life-changing. At this stage of life, the concept of wearing eyeglasses can be devastating for many kids. What can you do if your tween or teen would rather see a blurry world than put on a pair of frames? Our children’s eye doctor has two helpful tips –

  1. Bring your child to look through our fabulous optical collection of trendy, designer frames. Nowadays, glasses are considered to be a popular fashion accessory, and we stock a diverse selection of colors and shapes. Encourage your teen to find their favorite celebrity style and ask us to show you the most suitable options to match. We have eyeglasses for every wardrobe and every mood.
  2. Consider contact lenses. Contacts, especially daily disposable contact lenses, can be a great solution for many tweens and teens who don’t want to deal with eyeglasses. Contacts can also be more comfortable for playing sports. (No glasses slipping down a sweaty nose!) Depending upon your teen’s lifestyle and eye test results, he or she may be a good candidate for contact lenses; ask our children’s eye doctor to recommend the most appropriate type.

Professional VisionCare has three convenient locations so a pediatric eye exam is always close by! Choose from Lewis Center, Westerville or Johnstown and book your exam, today.

Help for the Homeless Drive

Help for the Homeless
Join Us In Making A Difference In Our Community
This season as we reflect on all we are thankful for, it is our privilege to care for those who are in need. We invite you to participate with us as we collect new and gently used items for the homeless, and we thank you for your generosity!
Donations can be dropped off at any of our four office locations. Thank you!

IDEAS FOR DONATIONS > > >

Canned Food

Oral Hygiene

Flashlights

Soap/Baby Wipes

Blankets

Lots Of Socks

Hats/Scarves

Razors

Toilet Paper

Shoes Boots

See if Daily Contact Lenses Are Right For You

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Your Source for Daily Disposable Contacts in Lewis Center

With virtually no necessary maintenance and ultimate convenience, daily contact lenses are the current rage in eyewear for a busy lifestyle. All you need to do is insert these disposable contacts (nicknamed dailies) in the morning, wear them throughout the day, remove and throw them out before bedtime. The next morning, insert a fresh new pair and start the process over. Sound attractive to you? To get started with wearing dailies, visit our Lewis Center eye doctors for an eye exam and contact lens fitting.

To determine if daily contact lenses are a good for your eyes and your lifestyle, here’s a rundown of the basic benefits:

Maximum Convenience & User Friendly

Consider your daily schedule. Do you have spare time to add the routine of sterilizing contacts to your regimen? Caring for daily disposable contacts is a breeze that takes only seconds out of your day. In addition, you won’t need to clear any precious shelf space in the bathroom for disinfectant solutions! People who travel also love the ease of dailies, as there is no need to pack eye care supplies except enough pairs of contact lenses for your trip.

Economical Eyesight

If you wear your lenses only a few times a week or on special occasions, daily disposable contacts are a real money-saver. Also, you won’t need to purchase any expensive cleaning solutions. So, while it is true that a year’s supply of dailies is costlier than a year of monthly lenses, your bottom-line price will not be higher. Currently, daily contact lenses average about $1 – $1.50 per day, which is about the same as your steaming jolt of caffeine.

Optimal Eye Health

Happy Girl Fingers Near Eyes 1280x853

Many scientific studies have demonstrated that disposable contacts lead to less complications. The rate of eye infections and eye irritation is reduced significantly – some estimates even put the number at 6x less than with conventional contacts! This is particularly important for anyone with an erratic or jam-packed daily schedule, because finding the time to disinfect contacts properly can be a challenge.

Soothing Sight for Sore Eyes

Because you insert a fresh pair of contacts every day, there’s no time for airborne irritants, debris, allergens, and protein deposits to accumulate on the surface of your lenses. If you have eye allergies, this can make the difference between being able to wear contacts comfortably or not at all – since pollen won’t get stuck on your daily contact lenses.

Crisp Vision

Let’s return to the basics of why you are wearing contacts in the first place – to see clearly. Daily disposable contact lenses come in first place for sharp vision. Studies show that vision quality with dailies is far superior to standard contacts. Do you have a hard-to-fit vision conditions? Fortunately, dailies come in a wide range of prescriptions, including for complex eye problems.

It’s Easy to Fit Daily Disposable Contacts into Your Life

Visit our Lewis Center optometry practice for a contact lens eye exam and fitting. Once you have your up-to-date prescription, replenish your supply from our complete inventory of premium disposable contact lenses.

The appointment scheduler is currently under maintenance, you can call or text us today to schedule your appointment at 614-898-9989

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