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6 Common Myths About Glaucoma

Glaucoma is a disease that causes permanent vision loss and and even blindness. It is also called the ‘Sneak-Thief of Sight’ because we don’t feel glaucoma. We would like to help you better understand glaucoma and we want to separate fact from fiction.

Let’s start with a little anatomy lesson. The Retina is the special tissue in the back of the eye, and its job is to capture light and turn it to an electrical signal. The “wires” connect to form the Optic Nerve. The optic nerve sends the signal to the brain. There are many parts of the brain that the optic nerve connects to.

Glaucoma Facts vs. Myths

MYTH 1: Glaucoma is a single disease

FACT

Glaucoma is a group of eye diseases; the most common ones are Open-Angle glaucoma (OAG) and Angle-Closure glaucoma (ACG).

Glaucoma is not cancer. When we say a “group” of diseases, it is somewhat similar to “cancer” because just like there are many forms of cancer, there are different types of glaucoma

In Open-Angle glaucoma, the drainage structure in your eye (called the trabecular meshwork) doesn’t allow the fluid inside the eye to flow out as it should. That causes an increase in internal ocular pressure that damages the optic nerve. Again, you don’t feel this extra pressure. Open Angle Glaucoma develops slowly. Usually by the time people are aware of it, they have lost their side vision (peripheral vision loss) because of the damage to the optic nerve

In Narrow-Angle Glaucoma, also known as Angle-Closure Glaucoma, the fluid in the eye does not drain out because the drainage channel between the iris and cornea is too narrow. This pressure damages the optic nerve, leading to vision loss. ACG can occur suddenly or gradually.

MYTH 2: Only the elderly suffer from glaucoma

FACT

Although it’s true that people over 60 are at a greater risk of developing open-angle glaucoma compared to people in their 40s, there are other types of glaucoma that can affect people aged 20 to 50 and even young infants.

In addition to age, those with a higher risk of developing glaucoma include:

  • African Americans and Hispanics
  • Individuals with a family history of glaucoma
  • Patients with cardiovascular disease, diabetes, or sickle cell anemia
  • Those who have previously sustained an eye injury
  • People taking steroid medications over the long term

MYTH 3: Glaucoma shows symptoms early on

FACT

The most common form of glaucoma, open-angle glaucoma, has almost no signs or symptoms until its later stages when vision loss sets in. Higher eye pressure causes no pain. Glaucoma affects peripheral vision (side vision) is the beginning, so it is hard to notice these changes until someone is far into the disease. Nerve damage is permanent and is impossible to regain. The only way to detect glaucoma is to undergo a comprehensive eye exam.

MYTH 4: Nothing can be done once you have glaucoma

FACT

Similar to Diabetes and High Blood Pressure, Glaucoma is controlled but not cured. The first line treatment for glaucoma is eye drop medications, and at times, laser and surgical procedures. These treatment options reduce the pressure in the eye and decreasing damage to the optic nerve.

MYTH 5: Testing for glaucoma is painful

FACT

Actually, testing for glaucoma is practically painless. In our office we measure the Visual Field and use a special scan of the nerve, called an OCT (optical coherence tomography). Other tests are done to determine if treatment is needed or if monitoring is the best course of action.

MYTH 6: You can’t prevent glaucoma

FACT

The good news is that a yearly comprehensive eye exams can prevent glaucoma by early diagnosis and treatment. In our office, Family Eye Care in Old Bridge this is this is part of every examination. We would be happy to help you. Please consider calling our office to schedule for your comprehensive eye exam.

Tips to Relax Your Eyes

Do your eyes hurt after spending a significant amount of time reading, playing video games, driving, or staring at a screen? These visually intense activities can cause eye strain, headaches and blurry vision. Other symptoms of eye strain can include sensitivity to light, neck and shoulder pain, difficulty concentrating, and burning or itchy eyes.

Theses symptoms are part of Computer Vision Syndrome. Below are some suggestion of techniques that may give you relief. If your symptoms continue, consider coming in for an examination. You may benefit from special eyeglasses for computer use.

Relax Your Eyes with These Supportive Techniques

Many of these exercises are designed for computer users. Eye strain resulting from long drives, reading, or other activities, can be alleviated by modifying some of these recommendations.

The 20-20-20 Rule

After about 20 minutes of screen time or doing close-up work, focus on an object at least 20 feet away for 20 seconds. This gives the eyes a much needed rest and helps them relax. There are also free apps available that provide pop-up reminders that notify you when it’s time to shift your gaze.

Screen Ergonomics

Your computer monitors should be 20 to 28 inches away from you, and the top of the computer should be at eye level or right below for optimum eye comfort. Glare filters can reduce the amount of glare produced by digital devices and improve your viewing experience.

Poor sitting posture can also contribute to eye strain. Your chair should be situated so that your feet are flat on the floor, or use an angled footrest for additional comfort.

If there is a window or light behind you, it may cause reflection or glare. Try to reposition your monitor to reduce or eliminate that.

Computer Eye Wear

Regular prescription lenses or glasses may not meet the visual needs for working on the computer for long periods. There are special lenses that are designed for computer use. These prescription glasses are customized to your needs and also reduce glare and block blue light.

Many people say: “but I just want one pair of eyeglasses”.

Think of the utensil you use most of the time when you eat. It’s probably a fork. When you eat soup or cereal, however, you probably use a spoon. Each one has its own function.

A hammer is a good tool, but sometimes you need a screwdriver. Its a different tool.

The computer program Word is good to write a report, or a message, but probably not ideal for a spreadsheet. The program Excel does that much better.

You probably wear different clothes in the winter than in the summer. One set of clothes probably doesn’t work all year round. You might wear different shoes for different functions or purposes.

The point is that just as there are different utensils we eat with, and different shoes we wear, and different tools we use, eyeglass lenses are designed for different functions, much as clear lenses are different from sunglasses.

You don’t have to live with the discomforts of eye strain. If symptoms persist, it may be a good idea to schedule a time to visit us at Family Eye Care in Old Bridge. so you can get the relief you want. Call our office at 732-679-2020 to schedule an appointment.

Signs That You Might Have Cataracts

Middle Aged Couple Multifocal Contacts

We all have a lens inside the eye, and that enables us to focus on things at near, such as reading or working on the computer. The lens is thin, soft, and clear at the start, but it gradually becomes more rigid, and then cloudy. At about 40, most of us start to need reading glasses. The lens is made of a protein that is similar to the protein of an egg. As you cook an egg, the clear part starts to turn cloudy and ultimately white. That’s why we call it the white of the egg. The lens in your eye also starts out clear and gradually turns cloudy. When it has turned so cloudy that it makes it difficult to see, we call that a cataract. At its early point, we may be able to reverse a cataract, but when it starts to impact your ability to read or drive, that’s when we need to think of cataract surgery.

Symptoms of cataracts include:

  • foggy or blurred vision, with less light reaching the retina
  • sensitivity to light, especially strong sunlight
  • difficulty seeing at night, especially while driving, when the headlights of approaching cars appear dispersed
  • frequently needing to update your eyeglass prescription
  • colors becoming less vivid and more yellow
  • images double, even with only one eye open
  • halos around lit objects

Besides aging, cataracts can develop due to

  • genetics
  • medical conditions, such as diabetes
  • head trauma
  • eye injuries
  • excessive smoking and drinking
  • Poor nutrition

What Can be Done About Cataracts?

We can prevent cataracts by wearing UV blocking sunglasses, taking Vitamins C and E, and eating antioxidant-rich fruits, vegetables, and nuts. Homeopathic pellets can reverse cataracts in some cases.

If you suspect you may have cataracts, the first step is to call us, Family Eye Care in Old Bridge, NJ. Dr. Tiomno and Dr. Roth always do a thorough examination, which includes checking for cataracts. At times, we may be able to prescribe eyeglasses.

When cataract surgery is the best solution, we will do all the necessary tests and will see you the day after the cataract surgery to make sure that your eyes are responding to the surgery as expected and we will direct you on the medications that you need to take. it is common for cataracts to develop faster in one eye than the other. Cataract surgery is done one eye at a time and never both eyes at the same time.

The cataract surgery means that the lens in the eye is replaced with an artificial lens to help you see once again and regain your vision. It is done on an outpatient basis, meaning there is no hospital stay. you are in the recovery room for about 1-2 hours and you go home the very same day. It is virtually painless, and has a very high rate of success.

We, at Family Eye Care, we care for patients with cataracts from Old Bridge, East Brunswick, Sayreville, Manalapan, and throughout New Jersey.

References:

How Long Does It Take to Get Used to New Glasses?

Most people who wear glasses are excited and have a confidence boost when they receive their new eyeglasses. There is usually an adjustment period before your vision is fully comfortable because your brain needs to re-calibrate. It’s like getting used to driving a new car. The radio may be in a different spot. The seat may feel a little different. The way it moves or turn can take a little getting used to.

Likewise, with new eyeglasses, if the frame is a different shape or the prescription has changed, it is likely to feel different. That is, until your brain learns to use the new tool Especially with progressive lenses or a near variable focus computer lens, it is bound to feel different.

If after using them for a few days or weeks, you still feel that things are off, don’t hesitate to come in. At times we may may need to make a adjustment to the frame, or rarely, even to the lenses.

We obviously want to feel comfortable with your new frame and we want you to see clearly and comfortably.

When Will My Eyes Adjust to My New Glasses?

It can take a few days to a few weeks for your eyes and brain to fully adjust to your new eye wear, whether you are increasing your prescription or wearing eyeglasses for the first time.

Even if you are getting new glasses with the same prescription, different frames or lenses can alter your vision until you get used to the new frame style or lens type. The complexity of your prescription and whether you buy a lens with premium optics versus basic spherical lens or polycarbonate material all can affect the adjustment time.

Progressive lenses tend to be the most difficult to adjust to. This is related to the peripheral soft focus zones, which are much less blurred for customized lenses prescribed by your local optometrist.

What Are Some Possible Visual Symptoms I Could Experience?

Some common experiences shared by those adjusting to new eye wear include:

  • Eye strain, headache
  • Blurry vision
  • Trouble with depth perception, nausea and dizziness
  • “Barrel distortion” — objects appear distorted, for high plus lenses
  • “Fishbowl effect” — the feeling that your visual field is being bent along the edges, as if you’re looking through a fishbowl, common in high minus prescriptions

Why Do My New Glasses Give Me a Headache?

Fatigued eye muscles can cause headaches, but your eyes aren’t the only things adjusting to your new lenses. Your brain is also working hard to create a clear picture of the messages it’s receiving from your eyes. This extra brain activity can sometimes bring on a headache, which should only last about a day or so.

Why Do I Feel Dizzy With My New Glasses?

Dizziness and nausea can be caused by problems with depth perception, similar to motion sickness. With motion sickness, you feel uneasy because your brain is having to make some adjustments in order to understand where your body is in position relative to the space surrounding it. So when you wear your new glasses, your brain may need some time to understand how to interpret the new images it’s receiving, causing you to feel disoriented or dizzy.

When Should I Call My Eye Doctor?

An adaptation period is normal, but when it extends more than one or two weeks, you should call us and set up a progress visit. We want you to see clearly and comfortably. At times it could be the frame, how it fits, the size, a change in prescription, etc.

Eyeglasses purchased elsewhere, and especially those purchased on-line, might not have the quality controls that we do. That may lead to some difficulties. Studies have shown that up to 40% of online eye wear are made incorrectly or inaccurately. Please understand there are many factors in arriving at a correct prescription and then manufacturing that. It requires time to figure out which part of the manufacture may be causing your problem and there may be a fee associated with that when eyeglasses are made by another source.

If you need new glasses or are having a hard time adjusting to a new pair, please contact us to schedule an appointment.

Special Multifocal Contact Lenses Slow Myopia Progression in Children

A study that was just published (August 11, 2020) showed that children who wore multifocal contact lenses had slower progression of their myopia (nearsightedness). This study was funded by the National Eye Institute, which is part of the National Institutes of Health. Investigators of the Bifocal Lenses In Nearsighted Kids (BLINK) Study published the results August 11 in JAMA.

Myopia (nearsightedness) increases the risk of retinal detachment, cataracts, glaucoma and macular degeneration, later in life. In this study, nearsighted children ages 7-11 showed that special contact lenses slowed myopia progression and eye growth.

More kids are becoming nearsighted at earlier ages, and that means that when they become adults, they will be even more nearsighted than the average we currently see. The higher the nearsightedness, the more likely you are to have sight-threatening complications as an adult, such as retinal detachment, glaucoma, and macular degeneration. The point is that anything we can do now to slow the progression of nearsightedness could ultimately benefit patients.

Myopia occurs when light cannot focus directly on the retina. The special contact lenses change how light focuses on the peripheral retina.

Illustration describing multifocal contact lenses

The common approach by most doctors has been to increase the eyeglass prescription each year, but that just is a stopgap measure. In our office we offer non-surgical ways to treat myopia progression, including vision therapy, orthokeratology (ortho-K), soft multifocal lenses, atropine, etc. We can discuss the virtues of each

Contact us if you are concerned about your child becoming more and more nearsighted each year. You can reach us at 732-679-2020.

Our office, Family Eye Care in Old Bridge, also serves the surrounding communities of Aberdeen, East Brunswick, Manalapan, Matawan, Marlboro, Monroe, Parlin. Sayreville, South Amboy, South River, Spotswood, Lawrence Harbor, Cliffwood Beach, and throughout New Jersey.

To learn more about myopia, visit https://www.nei.nih.gov/learn-about-eye-health/resources-for-health-educators/outreach-materials/myopia-nearsightedness

How To Prevent “Mask Fog” on Your Glasses

If you wear glasses and a face mask, you’ve probably struggled with “mask fog.” Your lenses get all misty, requiring you to wipe your eyewear throughout the day. Below are a few strategies to help you prevent your eyeglasses from fogging up when wearing a mask.

But First, Why Do Glasses Fog Up?

Quite simply, condensation forms whenever moist warm air hits a cool surface. Your eyeglasses fog up when the face mask sends your warm breath upward instead of in front of you. This is great to preventing virus transmission, but not so good for anyone that wears eyeglasses.

Is Your Mask Well Fitted?

The mask should fit securely over your nose. It is best to have a mask with a nose bridge or one that can be shaped or molded to your face. When the mask fits properly, most of your breath should go through the mask rather than through the top or sides.

Use Your Glasses To Seal the Top of Your Mask

This method works best with large, thick eyewear frames. By pulling your mask up higher on your nose and placing the lower part of your eyeglasses on the mask, you can get a more snug fit that blocks your warm breath from escaping upward toward your eyeglasses.

Tape Your Mask to Your Face

If this becomes more of a problem, you can use tape to secure your mask across the bridge of your nose and the top of your cheeks. Use easy-to-remove tape, including adhesive, medical, or athletic. Don’t use duct tape.

Soap and Water Help Prevent Fogging

This trick is one that healthcare professionals regularly turn to. All you need for this hack is soapy water (dish soap works best) and a microfiber cloth. Don’t use soaps with lotions in them as they can leave a thick residue, making it even harder to see.

Simply rub the lenses of your frame with a drop of soap. Then buff the lenses with a soft microfiber cloth.

This effective trick helps prevent your lenses from fogging up as a transparent, thin film of soap acts as a barrier.

Anti-Fog Wipes and Sprays

Another option is to purchase wipes and sprays designed to tackle foggy lenses. Read the fine print, as certain anti-fog solutions may not work as well, or may even damage lenses with coatings that minimize glare and fingerprint smudges, for example.

This may be the right time to consider Contact Lenses or Orthokeratology.

Call us to learn about other options.

Family Eye Care in Old Bridge, NJ. 1-732-679-2020.

 

Why You Regularly Need to Replace Your Sunglasses

Did you know that sunglasses, or at least sunglass lenses, regularly need to be replaced?

According to a study conducted at the University of São Paulo, the UV protection that sunglasses provide deteriorates over time. You may adore your current ones, but if you’ve been rocking those shades for two or more years, it might be time to get a new pair.

In addition to the UV-blocking properties, anti-reflective and anti-scratch coatings wear down, and the frame material may become brittle over the years, too. Even if you have the most durable sunglasses available, regular lens-replacement is the best way to ensure that your vision is maximally protected from the harmful effects of ultraviolet light.

UV Light and Sunglasses

The protective efficacy of your sunglasses comes in large part from the lens coating of dyes and pigments that reflect and absorb ultraviolet radiation. They create a barrier that prevents UV radiation from penetrating your eyes.

However, this protective coating can, and often does, break down over time. Wear and tear can cause an invisible web of tiny abrasions, compromising its UV-blocking power. Furthermore, the protective dyes and pigments aren’t able to absorb UV rays indefinitely; the more sunlight they’re exposed to, the more rapidly they’ll become ineffective.

A pair of shades worn on occasion and in mild conditions is likely to remain effective longer than a pair that is heavily used in a more intensely sunny environment. For example, if you spend long days on the water paddling, kayaking, or canoeing, the protective coating on your lenses will deteriorate more quickly than it would if you only wear your shades to go grocery shopping or sit in a cafe.

Why It’s Important to Protect Your Eyes From UV

Protecting your eyes from the sun is critical no matter where in the world you are, as UV exposure places you at risk for developing eye diseases like eye cancer, pterygium, and pinguecula — which can result in disfigurement and discomfort — as well as cataracts and macular degeneration — which cause vision loss and, in severe cases, blindness.

Even short-term overexposure can result in photokeratitis, a corneal sunburn. Symptoms include eye pain, swelling, light sensitivity, and temporary vision loss. Some people experience it when spending too much time boating or skiing without wearing eye protection. Snow and water can increase solar exposure because they reflect sunlight toward your face.

What to Look for When Getting New Sunglasses

When choosing new sunglasses, make sure they’re labeled 100% UV protection or UV400. Although most pairs sold in the United States and Canada offer this degree of protection, it’s still worth confirming before making the purchase. Keep in mind that factors like cost, polarization, lens color, or darkness don’t have much to do with the level of UV protection. Even clear prescription lenses can be UV protective.

It’s important to note that there is a lot of counterfeit sunwear in the marketplace. This is dangerous since counterfeit eyewear may not provide much-needed ultraviolet protection. So if the price of a renowned brand is too good to be true, it’s probably a fake.

The size and fit of the sunglasses is important. Bigger is definitely better if you spend a lot of time outdoors. Larger wrap-around eyewear is best if you regularly ski or spend many hours in the water, as this style blocks light from all directions.

To find out whether it’s still safe to wear your favorite shades, visit a Old Bridge eye doctor to determine whether your lenses still offer the right level of UV protection. It’s also a good opportunity to discuss prescription sunwear.

For more information about UV safety, or to get the perfect sunglasses tailored to your vision needs and lifestyle, contact Family Eye Care in Old Bridge today!

 

References

https://biomedical-engineering-online.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s12938-016-0209-7

 

What are the Complications of Myopia?

An article was published this week in the journal Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science. The authors reviewed other studies to determine the relationship and risk between how nearsighted someone is, and several sight-threatening eye problems.

The review concluded that low, moderate, and high myopia were all associated with increased risks of

  • myopic macular degeneration (MMD),
  • retinal detachment (RD),
  • posterior subcapsular cataract,
  • nuclear cataract,
  • open-angle glaucoma.

For each condition above the likelihood increased with severity of myopia. This means that the higher the nearsightedness, the worse these problems. The purpose of the study was also to address: what can we do to prevent a child or an adult from becoming more nearsighted, so they can PREVENT these problems from happening.

As someone becomes more nearsighted, the length of the eye increases. Longer eye- length, higher myopia degree, and age >60 years were associated with greater risk of visual impairment. The risks associated with low, moderate, and high myopia should alert parents, policymakers and healthcare professionals of the importance of measures to prevent and treat myopia.

In the past, the only advice doctors had was to increase the eyeglass prescription. This merely addresses the short term problem of not being able to see clearly, but does not solve the underlying problem. Fortunately, there are answers to this problem and we can prevent the increase in myopia. In our office, Family eye Care in Old Bridge, NJ, we offer several alternatives.

  • Vision Therapy (see more on this in our website)
  • Special bifocal eyeglasses when indicated
  • Orthokeratology or Ortho-k for short (see more on this in our website)
  • -Special Contact Lenses designed for myopia control
  • Atropine eye drop medication.

If your child is becoming more nearsighted, and you want to prevent this progression, call our office at 1-732-679-2020. We frequently see patients from Old Bridge, East Brunswick, Marlboro, Manalapan, Matawan, Aberdeen, South River, South Amboy,

Below is a summary of the study

METHODS

A systematic review and meta-analyses of studies published before June 2019 on myopia complications. Odds ratios (OR) per complication and spherical equivalent (SER) degree (low myopia SER < -0.5 to > -3.00 diopter [D]; moderate myopia SER ≤ -3.00 to > -6.00 D; hi-gh myopia SER ≤ -6.00 D) were calculated using fixed and random effects models.

RESULTS

Low, moderate, and high myopia were all associated with increased risks of Myopic Macular Degeneration

MD (OR, 13.57, 95% confidence interval [CI], 6.18-29.79; OR, 72.74, 95% CI, 33.18-159.48; OR, 845.08, 95% CI, 230.05-3104.34, respectively); RD (OR, 3.15, 95% CI, 1.92-5.17; OR, 8.74, 95% CI, 7.28-10.50; OR, 12.62, 95% CI, 6.65-23.94, respectively); posterior subcapsular cataract (OR, 1.56, 95% CI, 1.32-1.84; OR, 2.55, 95% CI, 1.98-3.28; OR, 4.55, 95% CI, 2.66-7.75, respectively); nuclear cataract (OR, 1.79, 95% CI, 1.08-2.97; OR, 2.39, 95% CI, 1.03-5.55; OR, 2.87, 95% CI, 1.43-5.73, respectively); and OAG (OR, 1.59, 95% CI, 1.33-1.91; OR, 2.92, 95% CI, 1.89-4.52 for low and moderate/high myopia, respectively). The risk of visual impairment was strongly related to longer axial length, higher myopia degree, and age older than 60 years (OR, 1.71, 95% CI, 1.07-2.74; OR, 5.54, 95% CI, 3.12-9.85; and OR, 87.63, 95% CI, 34.50-222.58 for low, moderate, and high myopia in participants aged >60 years, respectively).

CONCLUSIONS

Although high myopia carries the highest risk of complications and visual impairment, low and moderate myopia also have considerable risks. These estimates should alert policy makers and health care professionals to make myopia a priority for prevention and treatment.

 

11 Things You Should Not Do If You Wear Daily Disposable Contacts!

Daily disposable contact lenses are the healthiest solution to soft contact lens wear, particularly during this COVID period. or dailies. Single-use lenses are removed and discarded at the end of each day, and a new, fresh pair is inserted the next morning. Used properly, dailies promote eye health, and they’re comfortable and convenient.

Despite the many advantages associated with wearing daily disposables, there are plenty of ways you can damage your eyes and vision — some you may never have considered.

1. Don’t Touch Contacts with Dirty Hands

Before touching your lenses, make sure to wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water. When you touch your eyes without washing your hands, you transfer bacteria and this can lead to an infection. Preferably dry your hands with a disposable paper towel rather than a cloth towel, and ensure that no remnants of the towel remain on your fingers.

2. Don’t Expose Your Contacts to Water

Any source of water, whether tap, pool, or lake water, can introduce micro-organisms that can wreak havoc on your eye health and cause temporary vision loss or even permanent blindness.

If you feel you must use your contact lenses when swimming, make sure to wear waterproof goggles. If you do get water on your contact lenses, throw out the lenses and insert a new pair. Exposing contact lenses to chemicals like chlorine binds to the lens and cannot be cleaned off. It then leeches onto the cornea and causes irritation.

The next time you’re tempted to swim or shower with your lenses on, think twice before doing so.

3. Don’t Reuse Your Contacts

Daily disposable contacts are FDA approved for Single use. They are designed to be thrown away after every single use. People who reuse them risk painful and risky outcomes. Dailies are thinner, more fragile, and don’t hold moisture as well as other contacts.

Users sometimes attempt to increase the lifespan of these lenses by cleaning them in a disinfecting solution and wearing them for several days or even weeks at a time. These lenses are not made for repeated disinfecting. In fact, the process of cleaning the lenses tends to be not only ineffective but also breaks down the lens itself, increasing the risk of the lens falling apart while in the eye. The risk of complications and infection is not worth the few saved bucks.

4. Don’t Insert a Dropped Contact In Your Eye

One of the perks of daily lenses is that they are less expensive (per lens) than other types of contacts. So if you find yourself dropping a lens into the sink or on the floor, don’t bother placing it back in your eye. Doing so can cost you your eye health.

5. Never Put Contacts In Your Mouth

It may seem funny but there are people who do this. If you drop a contact lens, don’t bother trying to find it, and if you do, definitely don’t put it in your mouth to lubricate it. Your mouth contains bacteria that can infect your eyes once you reinsert your contacts.

Play it safe by carrying around an emergency pair of glasses or an extra pair of daily disposable contacts in your bag, your car, or at work.

6. Don’t Overwear Your Daily Lenses

Wearing your lenses for long periods of time can damage your eyes, even if they’re daily contact lenses. The maximum recommended daily use for any contact lens is 14-16 hours. Your eyes, just like any other part of your body, need to rest. Your corneas receive oxygen from the air, not from blood vessels, and while it’s healthy to wear contacts during the day, wearing them for extended periods can significantly reduce the amount of oxygen your eyes receive, which can lead to complications. If you don’t give your eyes the rest they need, your corneas may swell (edema), which can lead to corneal abrasion and even bacterial infection.

7. Don’t Sleep With Your Lenses

Daily lenses should never be worn overnight. You’re risking your sight by sleeping in a lens that’s not approved for overnight use, as it can lead to ocular irritation, swelling and corneal ulcers.

8. Don’t Insert Contacts Before Completing Your Morning Routine

Avoid inserting your contacts before you shower or wash your face, since you risk exposing your lenses to tap water and the bacteria that come with it. We recommend that you insert your lenses after blow-drying and styling your hair, especially if you’re using hairspray or other aerosols, as these products can dry out your contacts. Additionally, the spray can coat the lenses and leave a film that not only irritates the eyes, but can make it difficult to see. If you’re at the hairdresser’s and cannot remove your lenses, shut your eyes when spray is applied.

9. Don’t Get Makeup On Your Contacts

Insert your contacts before applying makeup, because any makeup residue on your hands, such as mascara, can easily transfer to your lenses.

If you get concealer, eyeliner or mascara on their contact lenses, then immediately remove the lens and clean the makeup with solution (while making sure to dispose of the lens before bed). Otherwise, simply replace with another lens. Avoid wearing waterproof makeup, since it can’t always be removed from your lenses, even when rinsed with solution.

To prevent makeup from getting on your lenses, don’t apply mascara all the way from the base of your lashes up. Instead, apply it from the midway point. It’s also important not to apply eyeliner on the inner lid of your eye, but rather to the skin above your lashes.

10. Don’t Wear Contact Lenses If Your Eyes Are Irritated

As the saying goes, “if in doubt – take them out!” If your eyes feel irritated, uncomfortable, or if you notice any pain or redness, don’t power through. If your symptoms last a while, contact us at Family Eye Care in Old Bridge, NJ. Don’t let a serious infection go unchecked.

When your eyes feel more rested and are free of discomfort, put in a fresh pair of contacts.

11. Don’t Rub Your Eyes

If your eyes feel itchy or dry, or if a lens feels out of place, you may be tempted to rub your eyes. But rubbing, whether with contacts or without, can lead to long-term ocular issues. This may cause you to experience blurred vision, and may even damage your cornea. Instead, we at Family Eye Care in Old Bridge, NJ can recommend eye drops to relieve any discomfort. Make sure to apply them only when contact lenses are removed.

Above, we have delved into things you should never do with daily contact lenses. Fortunately, if you do make a mistake, you can remove the lens and replace it with a fresh one. The few dollars you might save by not opening a new pack aren’t worth the damage a mistake can cause.

If you have any questions or are interested in finding out more about contact lenses, contact us at 732-679-2020. Dr. Roth and Dr. Tiomno are happy to explain how to care for your eyes and maintain your vision.

Children becoming more nearsighted is linked to smartphone use, study says

Myopia and children tablet usage

Children who are nearsighted use twice as much smartphone data each day as their non-nearsighted peers, a recent study found.

Does digital connectivity from such a young age exacerbate the risk of children becoming more nearsighted? A recently published study in the journal Clinical and Experimental Optometry, found that the increase in nearsightedness was associated with increased smartphone data usage. Children who were more nearsighted tended to spend more time on digital devices. The findings raise concerns over the next generation of Americans-iGen or Gen Z-growing up with a preponderance of digital devices.

“Based on the results from both studies, the risk for myopia development and progression may be higher in this pandemic situation.”

those that were born after 1996 are known as Gen Z and have no memory of a world before smartphones. In fact, 95% of american teems own or have access to a smartphone and nearly half say they’re online on a near-constant basis.

As digital device use has skyrocketed in recent years, so, too, has myopia prevalence and age of onset. In just four decades, U.S. myopia prevalence has gone from 25% of Americans to about 42%.

Smartphone usage associated with myopia

Students spent an average of four hours of time on the phone each day, mostly spent using social media apps (Snapchat, Instagram and Facebook). Researchers found that myopes spent longer on their phones than non-myopes but also were more likely to believe screen use could affect their eyes.

“The lifestyle habits of children and teenagers today have undeniably changed with advancements in technology and while the prevalence of myopia has been increasing for decades, the increased level of near visual stimulation from smartphones may pose an additional independent risk for myopia,” the authors note.

“Smartphones differ from traditional reading in various aspects such as wave-length, distance from the eye, size, contrast, resolution, temporal properties and spectral composition, all of which merit investigation. Aside from this, children and adolescents now spend more (time) than ever using a smartphone that demands proximal attention, which may compete with other more protective activities such as time outdoors.”

Corroborating evidence

Other studies have found an association between myopia and smartphone use as well. This was different, however, when comparing the same data to television viewing or after-school study.

Yi Pang, MD, OD, PhD., associate dean for research at Illinois College of Optometry, says there is a trend that more children are spending more time on digital devices, and research has shown that longer time on near work and/or shorter working distance can increase myopia progression. This should be a red flag as schoolchildren only recently concluded months of distance learning on handheld devices or computerizes due to the pandemic lock down.

“With the COVID-19 pandemic, the time on electronic devices dramatically increased in children because of remote learning and fewer opportunities for kids to do other activities,” Dr. Pang says. “Based on the results from both studies, the risk for myopia development and progression may be higher in this pandemic situation.” However, Dr. Pang notes, both studies only found an association with myopia and not a causation, which should be grounds for future studies. Dr. Pang adds: “Eye care practitioners should be aware of this issue and be ready to address parents’ and patients’ concerns.”

For more information on how we can help your child from becoming nearsighted, or becoming increasingly more nearsighted, please call our office at 1-732-679-2020, Family Eye Care in Old Bridge, NJ