The link between vision and learning

Learning Related Vision Disorders

Eighty percent of learning is visual.

One in four school-aged children suffer from undiagnosed vision problems that affect their academic performance.

There is a difference between sight and vision and understanding this difference is important. Sight is the ability to see clearly at any distance. Vision is the ability to take this clear image and bring it into the eye in a smooth and accurate manner, then transmit the image through the optic nerve to the back of the brain where it is interpreted and made sense of by combining it with past learning experiences.

Learning Related Vision Disorders: Vision and Learning Disabilities “In human society, most information is acquired through the visual system. Uncorrected impairment of visual functioning can prevent the normal acquisition of information and lead to difficulties in learning… There may be subtle abnormalities of binocular functioning, accommodation to close visual targets, or higher processing of visual information that interfere with the learning process. Detection of any such abnormalities… at the earliest possible point in a child’s development is crucial to the prevention of subsequent learning disabilities that might otherwise ensue.”

Optimum Vision and Eye Care uses technologically advanced equipment to detect that the eyes are moving in a smooth and accurate manner. The RightEye uses infrared tacking technology to provide the doctor with information that can unveil a binocular dysfunction.

What is the RightEye screening all about? Follow this link for more information.

https://righteye.com/reading-eyeq/

https://righteye.com/functional-vision-eyeq/

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https://righteye.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/03/RE-WEB-Learning-8.5x11.pdf

Learning Disabilities – A report to the United States Congress, Prepared by the Interagency Committee on Learning Disabilities, National Institutes of Health, Department of Health and Human Services, 1987 page 32.

Vision Care Plans vs. Medical Insurance, what is the difference?

There is a lot of confusion out there on how medical and vision insurances work. Over my 22 years in practice I have explained the differences countless times. I have decided to write a blog on the subject in hopes of providing some clarification.


Optometry is one of the only professions that accepts dual insurances. Years ago, before the profession of Optometry expanded to include medical diagnosis and treatments, vision care plans were created. Vision Care Plans (VCP) offer routine vision examinations for healthy eyes that include a refraction and benefits towards products like eyeglasses and contact lenses. As the profession expanded, Optometrists evolved into Optometric Physicians. We were now educated and credentialed to perform ocular health assessments and treat eye diseases such as conjunctivitis, glaucoma and ocular surface disease. The examinations became longer and more extensive but the reimbursement from VCP remained the same. Policy changes were proposed and passed that gave Optometric Physicians the right to be included as providers on medical insurance plans.


Think of an Optometrist as the Primary Care Physician for your eyes. We have the tools and education to detect the problem and treat if within our scope of practice. If outside our scope of practice we refer to the appropriate Ophthalmologist (Surgeon) for further evaluation and treatment. Within Optometry, we have doctors that specialize in low vision, ocular disease and neuro-optometric vision rehabilitation. Within Ophthalmology, we have doctors that specialize in Cornea/Cataract, Glaucoma, Retina and Neuro-Ophthalmology. So which doctor should you visit? This is where your local Optometrist can help channel you to the right doctor.


The Optometrist determines which plan to submit the claim to by what the patient’s primary reason for the visit is. Billing a VCP is appropriate if the patient is looking for new glasses/contact lenses or experiencing a change in vision. Medical insurances are used if the patient has a health concern such as sudden vision loss, visual field loss, dry eye, allergies, pink eye or is on high risk medications.


Hope this helped clarify some of the confusion.


How to get your eyelids and eyelashes holiday ready! Have eyelash extensions but don't know how to keep them clean? Read on for the answer

Not sure how to maintain clean eyelids after you have those gorgeous eyelash extensions installed? You're not alone! Follow these 4 easy steps to maintain healthy eyes while reducing risk of infection.

Wash your eyelids every night with We Love Eyes Tea Tree Eyelid & Eyelash Foaming Cleanser. It's safe for eyelids with extensions installed, and has the bonus of tea tree oil to control infection-causing bacteria and demodex.

Step 1: Place a half pump of foaming cleanser onto a cleansing brush. 

Step 2: Keep your eyelid closed. With 5-10 firm strokes back and forth, use the brush to wash the entire upper eyelid with the eyelid foaming cleanser. Make sure you get the eyelid margin as this is where bacteria and demodex build up. Do not get the foaming cleanser inside the eye - it's a soap, so it will sting!

Step 3: Rinse the brush under lukewarm tap water and tap the brush on a towel to blot any excess water.

Step 4: With 2-5 gentle strokes back and forth, use the brush to rinse away any soapy residue. Repeat steps 3 and 4 until any soapy residue is completely removed. Remember you are cleaning the eyelids, not the inside of the eyes.

And she's clean! Dirty eyelids can be the start of ocular surface issues like blepharitis, keratitis, ocular allergies and dry eye syndrome. Start promoting healthy outcomes today that will alst through the new year. You can get your We Love Eyes Eyelid & Eyelash Foaming Cleanser pack at Optimum Vision and Eye Care.

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August is Children's Vision and Learning Month

Summer is the perfect time to see your optometrist.

 A comprehensive vision exam with a developmental optometrist is the first step to ensure your child's visual skills are ready for the coming school year!

Why "Vision & Learning"?

August was first declared Vision & Learning Month in 1995.  The overall goal of this national observance is to help increase awareness among parents and educators on the prevalence of un-diagnosed or misdiagnosed vision problems. 

 

Due to the incomplete nature of in-school eye screenings, many vision problems can be missed completely or misdiagnosed as other conditions like  ADHD .  Children who grow up with undiagnosed vision problems are often unaware that what they see is abnormal, and that means they don't know to ask for help. The yearly Vision & Learning Month campaign  encourages parents to take their children in for a  comprehensive vision exam  every year.   Children with vision problems that are not diagnosed and treated  may struggle in school  and often go on to be  adults  with the same vision problems--children do not "grow out of" these difficulties.

Due to the incomplete nature of in-school eye screenings, many vision problems can be missed completely or misdiagnosed as other conditions like ADHD.

Children who grow up with undiagnosed vision problems are often unaware that what they see is abnormal, and that means they don't know to ask for help. The yearly Vision & Learning Month campaign encourages parents to take their children in for a comprehensive vision exam every year.

Children with vision problems that are not diagnosed and treated may struggle in school and often go on to be adults with the same vision problems--children do not "grow out of" these difficulties.

To locate a Developmental Optometrist in your area or for more information visit www.COVD.org.

Dr. Manisha Geiger is located in Scottsdale, AZ and has over 20 years experience in Developmental and Pediatric Optometry. Call Optimum Vision and Eye Care for an appointment 480-588-8858

 

Cataract Facts

The month of June shines a light on the prevalent problem of cataracts. More than half of Americans either have a cataract or have had surgery for it by age 80. Are you aware of the signs and symptoms of this seemingly omnipresent vision condition?

[Special thanks to the National Eye Institute (which has designated June as National Cataract Month), the National Institutes of Health, and the American Optometric Association for the information provided here.]

WHAT: A cataract is a clouding of the lens in the eye that affects vision and is especially common in older Americans. In fact, a full 17% of Americans age 40 and over have cataracts in one or both eyes.

WHY: In a normal eye, light passes through a transparent lens to the retina (a light-sensitive tissue at the back of the eye). Once there, light changes into nerve signals that are sent to the brain. For the retina to receive a sharp image, the lens must be clear. If it’s not, as with a cataract, what you see will be blurry.

SYMPTOMS: It’s time to schedule an appointment with an eyecare professional when a person experiences:

  •  Cloudy or blurry vision
  •  Fading of colors
  •  Decreased night vision
  •  Increased glare (sunlight, indoor lighting, or oncoming automobile headlights may feel too bright or you see a halo effect around lights)
  •  Double or multiple images in one eye
  •  More frequent prescription changes in glasses or contacts

HELP: Patient and optometrist should discuss any of these symptoms. While some can suggest a variety of vision problems, an eyecare practitioner will be able to tell whether the patient may have cataracts and—after a comprehensive eye exam—what is the best course of care.

THE GOOD NEWS: Cataracts are—in most cases—a natural part of aging. If a cataract does need to be removed, the result will be vastly improved vision. 

 

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Sports Vision and Ocular Trauma

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Summertime, Swimming, Sports and Eye Trauma. Which one of these does not belong? 

Lets talk about eye protection. Did you know that 70% of Americans report they are involved in athletic activities. However, according to the American Optometric Association (AOA), only just over 30% of adults wear any eye protection while participating in sports. And sadly, only half have introduced their children to any form of eye protection. I am hopeful that with more awareness we can change these statistics. 15% of the annual eye injuries in the U.S. are the result of sports/recreational activities and up to 90% of sports-related eye injuries are preventable, according to National Eye Institute (NEI).

The highest risk sports, according to the NEI, are baseball/softball, basketball, boxing, hockey, Lacrosse, paintball, and racquet sports. For kids under 14, baseball is the leading cause of eye injury. For 15-24 year olds, it’s basketball.

What you need to know to help prevent injuries: 

Wear eye protection that meets ASTM (American Society for Testing and Materials) standards. Parents, make sure that your children wear eye protection. Question the coaches in the sports your child is involved. Is eye protection advised along with shin guards or helmets? Does the coach keep an ocular emergency first aid kit on the bench? Does the coach know what to do if there an ocular emergency?

Optimum Vision and Eye Care is happy to provide a complimentary ocular emergency triage card to any coach that may require one.  We can also guide you in creating your own ocular emergency kit. Dr. Geiger is available for consults and sports vision screening. Contact us at 480-588-8858.

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May - Healthy Vision Month

 
 

 

May is Healthy Vision Month — Make Vision a Focus!

From the moment you wake up until you go to bed at night, your eyes are working to bring you the world. In fact, they deliver 80% of the information you take in every day — about your loved ones, your job, and all the things you love to see and do! That’s why it’s so important to keep them healthy and safe.

We get our eye color from our parents, but did you know that many eye diseases can run in families, too? Talking to your family members about their eye health can help you find out if you’re at higher risk for eye disease. If you learn that eye diseases run in your family, talk with your eye doctor. Here are some of the most common eye diseases to discuss:

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Cataract:  A cataract is a clouding of the lens in the eye that affects vision. Most cataracts are related to aging. Cataracts are very common in older people. By age 80, more than half of all Americans either have a cataract or have had cataract surgery. 

The risk of cataract increases as you get older. Other risk factors for cataract include:

  • Certain diseases (for example, diabetes).
  • Personal behavior (smoking, alcohol use).
  • The environment (prolonged exposure to ultraviolet sunlight).

 

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Age related macular degeneration: Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is a disease that blurs the sharp, central vision you need for “straight-ahead” activities such as reading, sewing, and driving. AMD affects the macula, the part of the eye that allows you to see fine detail. AMD causes no pain.

Glaucoma: Glaucoma is a group of diseases that can damage the eye’s optic nerve and result in vision loss and blindness. It is one of the main causes of blindness in the United States. However, with early treatment, you can often protect your eyes against serious vision loss. Therefore it is very important that it be diagnosed.

Diabetic Eye Disease: Diabetic eye disease refers to a group of eye problems that people with diabetes may face as a complication of diabetes. People with diabetes are at risk for diabetic retinopathy, cataract and glaucoma.

Retinal Detachment: The retina is the light-sensitive layer of tissue that lines the inside of the eye and sends visual messages through the optic nerve to the brain. When the retina detaches, it is lifted or pulled from its normal position. If not promptly treated, retinal detachment can cause permanent vision loss.

Corneal Eye Disease: 

The cornea is the eye’s outermost layer. It is the clear, dome­shaped surface that covers the front of the eye. It plays an important role in focusing your vision.  The cornea acts as a barrier against dirt, germs, and other particles that can harm the eye. The cornea shares this protective task with the eyelids and eye sockets, tears, and the sclera (white part of the eye). The cornea also plays a key role in vision by helping focus the light that comes into the eye. The cornea is responsible for 65­-75 percent of the eye’s total focusing power. Common conditions that affect the cornea include Injuries, allergies, keratitis, dry eye, Keratoconus and corneal dystrophies.

Why is a comprehensive eye health and vision examination important?

Recent research confirms what eye doctors have known for some time. A comprehensive eye exam by a Doctor of Optometry can – and often does – reveal a surprising number of ailments, such as diabetes and heart conditions.

A study conducted at the University of Waterloo in Canada showed that among patients who came in for a routine checkup, 58% had at least one significant change or health concern not apparent in previous exams. The study defined “significant change” as a change in prescription, diagnosis of a new eye condition, or a change in overall patient health.

“I give a lot of weight to the health-assuring aspect of routine eye care,” one researcher said. “We diagnose early glaucoma, cataract and macular degeneration quite often.”

Healthy Vision Month is a time to raise awareness about eye health and strategies to help prevent vision loss and blindness. There are lots of ways you can get involved, but first things first: get an eye exam — and encourage the people you care about to do the same!

Optimum Vision and Eye Care is here to fill all your eye health and vision needs. Call today for an appointment: 480-588-8858. VSP, BCBS, Cigna and Medicare plans accepted.

How Eating The Right Foods can improve your Brain and Eye Health

The eyes and brain have the highest concentration of zeaxanthin and lutein in the body. Other nutrients that help support both eye and brain health include:

 

  • Omega-3s (EPA/DHA)
  • Alpha lipoic acid
  • Vitamin A
  • Vitamin D
  • Vitamin E
  • Vitamin B6
  • Vitamin B12
  • Selenium
 
 

Nutrition’s Role in the Eyes and Brain

Inflammation, oxidative stress, and interruption of the blood barrier are implicated in eye health concerns accompanying aging. Other research shows that these issues are also implicated in concussions. Boosting nutrition, whether dietary or supplemented, can help preemptively protect patients from vision-threatening concerns and possibly protect cognitive abilities.

As part of a holistic concussion prevention program at the University of Cincinnati, Dr. Joe Clark devised a program that betters athletes’ peripheral vision, reaction time, and hand-eye coordination, resulting in a drop in concussions. Clinical researched links optimal MPOD with improved visual function, neural processing speeds and reaction time. Patients can improve MPOD by adding 8 mg of zeaxanthin or more into their diet.

Eye care professionals and specifically Neuro-Optometrists, are an important part of the concussion care team because they are experts in the measurement of eye-brain dysfunction; they provide neuro-ocular rehabilitation therapy to patients with brain injuries. Neuro-Optometrists co-manage with Neurologists, occupational therapists and the whole rehabilitation team to help patients get back to their normal state after a traumatic brain injury.

To learn more about Neuro-Optometric rehabilitation visit www.noravisionrehab.com

The Harmful Effects Of Blue Light

Retinal damage. sunlight contains UV and blue light. Blue light, which is part of the visible light spectrum, reaches deeper into the eye and its cumulative effect can cause damage to the retina. Furthermore, in certain wavelengths, blue light is implicated in the development of age-related macular degeneration (AMD).

Sleep deprivation.... research shows that the shorter wavelengths in blue light is what causes the body to produce less melatonin because the body is more sensitive to this type of light. ... Other studies have found that blue wavelengths suppress delta brainwaves, which induce sleep, and boost alpha wavelengths, which create alertness.

 What can we do about it

The good news is we now have a blue light filter coating that can be placed on your eyewear to block out these harmful rays. Much like a UV coating blocks out the harmful rays from the sun, the blue light blocking coating will protect your eyes from the harmful rays being emitted from our smartphones and computers. 

Optimum Vision and Eye Care can help with all your Eye Health and Vision needs. Give us a call at 480-588-8858!

Why taking care of your eyes, is also good for your brain

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When discussing the macular carotenoids found in MacuHealth LMZ3, their protective role against AMD is often highlighted. Although this is an important point to discuss with patients who have or are at risk for AMD, I have a much more general conversation on the role of macular pigment with all of my patients. After all, 100 years ago, the average lifespan was much shorter, with many not living to an age at which AMD would manifest. So, it seems that the real reason for the exquisite design of the macular pigment may not be soley for protection but also to enhance vision.
 
Recent Research
A recent study1 showed a strong correlation between raising macular pigment optical density (MPOD) through supplementation and increased contrast sensitivity. However, the authors of the study explain that this correlation is not inherent. While many of macular pigment’s benefits to visual performance involve filtration of blue light, in the case of contrast sensitivity, macular pigment would equally filter the light versus dark bars on a contrast target, thus negating the effect of increased MPOD on enhanced contrast sensitivity.  
 
Consequently, the basis for this effect appears to lie in another neurophysiological phenomenon known as lateral inhibition. In the retina, groups of photoreceptors are connected together in circuits to form receptive fields. Antioxidants increase the sensitivity of these retinal circuits, which serve to detect edges in the visual field. Because the three macular carotenoids — lutein (L), zeaxanthin (Z), and meso-zeaxanthin (MZ) — are

Heart Disease and The Eyes. ( February is heart health month)

Heart disease and ocular health share important common ground.

Ocular manifestations are an important component of heart disease. Heart disease is the No. 1 killer of women in this country. Patients and their Optometrist should understand the importance of cardiovascular health, especially the ocular implications.

The eye really can be the first manifestation of systemic disease, whether it be cardiovascular disease, hypertension other systemic diseases. The eye is not separated from the rest of the body and the eye is unique in that it is one of the only areas where we can actually directly visualize blood vessels.

These fragile vessels, especially those in the highly vascularized retina, can easily become damaged from hypertension, or fall prey to vein occlusions or age-related macular degeneration – all overlapping with cardiovascular complications.

Studies have shown that women are more likely than men to show arteriolar narrowing with an increased risk for secondary ocular vascular complication and possible vision loss. Theoretically, this is due to a more prominent microvascular role in the development of coronary heart disease in women than men, and those with the narrowest retinal vasculature would have twice the risk.

These changes, as well as early signs of hypertension, can be seen by ophthalmologists and optometrists when examining the retina, giving them a role in the diagnosis and management of cardiovascular disease.

This is one of the reasons we take a blood pressure reading on every patient at Optimum Vision Eye Care.

Hypertension

Hypertension, a general cardiovascular disease, can have repercussions throughout the body, including the eye.

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In general, hypertension can predispose you to having a variety of eye problems. It may be as minimal as changes in the appearances of retinal vessels that can be an indication of high blood pressure – even in patients who may not know they have high blood pressure – but changes like that don’t necessarily affect your vision, to more vision threatening conditions like retinal vascular occlusion.

This condition is what we call a stroke in the eye. Chronic hypertension can predispose one to other eye conditions such as retinal vein occlusions. Hypertension causes retinal arteriolar changes that lead to compression of the veins at the A-V crossing, resulting in branch retinal vein occlusions. Central or branch retinal artery or vein occlusions can be accompanied by hemorrhages, optic nerve atrophy and sometimes vision loss. Vision loss subsequent to retinal arteriolar occlusions is caused by retinal ischemia. Retinal vein occlusions can cause vision loss stemming from ischemia or macular edema.

Narrowing of the carotid artery caused by atherosclerotic plaque that can predispose you to stroke can also predispose you to have a blockage of a retinal arteriole, either central or branch, and can lead to vision loss. It’s like having a stroke in the eye basically. It leads to vision loss due to loss of blood supply to an area of the retina.

Importance of a healthy lifestyle

The risk factors for heart disease and ocular health overlap in many ways.

Primarily, smoking and poor diet are two risk factors that can adversely affect both cardiovascular and ocular health. Modifying one’s diet and stopping smoking are good preventive measures.

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The message that we tell our patients when they ask what can they do to keep their eyes healthy is the same as what their primary care doctors are recommending to keep their heart healthy: Exercise, try to avoid obesity, don’t smoke. If you have diabetes, make sure it’s under good control, eat a healthy, balanced diet, lots of fruits and vegetables, omega-3 fatty acids.

Ocular health and optimal functioning of the microvasculature in the eye rely heavily on receiving appropriate nutrients from the heart.

A diet rich with fruits, vegetables, soluble fiber and soy provides phytosterols, phytochemicals and isoflavones that can help lower cholesterol and maintain good blood flow through the eye vessels.

So be good to your heart and your vision will follow. 💕 

Four Reasons a Second Pair of Glasses is a good idea

It is common for the average American to have multiple Television screens, computer devices, shoes, and handbags, but why then do we only have one pair of glasses? Glasses are not only a wonderful fashion accessory but an important medical device. There are so many reasons to have two or more pairs of glasses! Here's a few of the most popular!


1. Glasses for Sun protection 

One of the biggest reasons people get multiple pairs of glasses is that they want to have a pair for when they go outside, especially hiking. Yes, photochromic (one that change colors in the sun) work great if you're only going to be walking outside for a few minutes, but they have their downsides. For Example:

- Photochromic lenses only get about 80-90% as dark as sunglasses.

- They don't block glare from water or snow coming from the sun.

- Only certain brands change in cars, but they don't change all the way.

Sunglasses to wear for driving and boating should include polarized lenses. Polarized lenses help block reflections from the sun coming off of the windshield onto the dashboard or block reflections of the sun on the water!

As you can see a tinted or photochromic lenses decreases the glare slightly. The reflections make it difficult to view through the windshield, note the clouds on the windshield in the picture.  Through a polarized lens, you can even see through the window and see the seats. This is the best way to view the outside world!

 

2. Make a bold and colorful Fashion statement

Most men and women have multiple shoes, handbags, and jewelry to match and accessorize their outfits. So why not multiple pairs of glasses to use as a fashion statement? Research from The College of Optometrists reveals that  43 per cent of people believe glasses make them look smarter. For another 36 per cent, it’s about appearing more professional and businesslike.

 

Here are some hot tips to complement your particular face shape:

  • For oval faces: “You can carry off bold styles, but always ensure your glasses are wider than the broadest part of your face.”
  • For square faces: “Rounder frames will soften your features.”
  • For round faces: “Angular, narrow frames will help lengthen your face.”


At Optimum Vision and Eye Care, we have a wide variety of frames to select from! Pair that with our high quality lenses for a winning look and even better vision.

 

3. Glasses for a specific occupation or working distance. 

As we get older the lens inside our eyes starts to harden up, making near vision slightly challenging for us (also known as presbyopia). Usually for these types of patients, we recommend progressive lenses. But if you're in the small percentage that can't wear progressives (non-adapt patients) or just don't like losing out on your full "edge to edge clarity", then you are the right person for computer only or reading only glasses. Many people have heard of reading glasses, but have you heard of computer glasses? Dr. Geiger, along with the  Optometric and Optician community  recommend a second pair of glasses specifically designed for the computer even if you don't have a prescription. 

Why?

This is an eye when focusing on your phone(just imagine it 100x as fast!

When you're looking at a computer or phone screen, the text or images your eye is trying to focus on is behind a piece of glass. This confuses your eye slightly, making it attempt to focus on the glass and the text at the same time. Causing your eyes to go in and out of focus very quickly. 

A pair of computer glasses, aside from looking amazing, utilize a small plus in the lens to help the eye relax when looking at a computer device or smartphone. Computer glasses will also incorporate a blue blocking filter to protect harmful blue light rays. Blue light has been found to disrupt sleep patterns and cause stress or strain on the eyes when looking at a computer screen for too long! As well as be damaging to the macula and retina.

We only use the best blue blocking filter available on the market today.

 

4. night Vision

We naturally lose rod cells as we age, making night vision more difficult. Night vision issues can also arise from a Vitamin A deficiency. Did you know 7% of pregnant women suffer from night blindness (nyctalopia) from Vitamin A Deficiency (VAD) yearly? Night blindness can also be caused by developing cataracts. Most people notice difficulty with driving at night when this condition exists, which can be of concern.

Glasses that are meant for daytime wear don't necessarily have the coatings required to aid with the night vision issues.  Another great reason to get a second pair night wear. An Anti-Reflective coating on the lenses will help with night vision and driving because the lens is built to make things appear brighter at reduce light scatter at night. 


Whatever your need is for a second or third pair, come in before the end of the year to maximize your insurance or HSA/FSA benefits for the year.

Schedule an appointment this month to take advantage of our Use It or Lose It deal! Buy one complete pair of glasses and get the second complete pair at half off

* 50% only eligible for second pair after buying one complete pair(frame and lenses) at full price.

**Special valid December 1st - December 31st. Must buy both pairs on the same day and for the same person.

Diabetic Retinopathy...is your vision at Risk?

November is National Diabetes Awareness Month. If you have uncontrolled Diabetes Mellitus, your vision is at risk. Early detection is the key to saving your vision. 

 

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How prevalent is Diabetic Retinopathy?

  • Worldwide, diabetic retinopathy is the leading cause of blindness among working-aged adults.

  • The global burden of diabetic retinopathy includes:

    • 387 million people with diabetes mellitus (DM) in the world, estimated to increase to 592 million people in 2035.

    • 93 million people with diabetic retinopathy

    • Affects 1 out of 3 persons with diabetes mellitus

    • Proliferative diabetic retinopathy (PDR): 17 million people

    • Diabetic macular edema: 21 million people

    • Vision-threatening diabetic retinopathy: 28 million people

What is Diabetic Retinopathy?

People with diabetes can have an eye disease called diabetic retinopathy. This is when high blood sugar levels cause damage to blood vessels in the retina. These blood vessels can swell and leak. Or they can close, stopping blood from passing through. Sometimes abnormal new blood vessels grow on the retina. All of these changes can steal your vision.
 

Points to Remember

Diabetic eye disease comprises a group of eye conditions that affect people with diabetes. These conditions include diabetic retinopathy, diabetic macular edema (DME), cataract, and glaucoma.

All forms of diabetic eye disease have the potential to cause severe vision loss and blindness.

Diabetic retinopathy involves changes to retinal blood vessels that can cause them to bleed or leak fluid, distorting vision.

Diabetic retinopathy is the most common cause of vision loss among people with diabetes and a leading cause of blindness among working-age adults.

DME is a consequence of diabetic retinopathy that causes swelling in the area of the retina called the macula. 

Controlling diabetes—by taking medications as prescribed, staying physically active, and maintaining a healthy diet—can prevent or delay vision loss. 

Because diabetic retinopathy often goes unnoticed until vision loss occurs, people with diabetes should get a comprehensive dilated eye exam at least once a year.

Early detection, timely treatment, and appropriate follow-up care of diabetic eye disease can protect against vision loss. 

Diabetic retinopathy can be treated with several therapies, used alone or in combination.

Be thankful for the vision you have. Preventive care is the key. See your local Optometrist every 6 to 12 months for a comprehensive dilated exam! 

Why have backup glasses?

Glasses and contact lenses go hand in hand. Even though your contact lenses may be your first choice for vision correction, your eyes still need break to relax and breath. A backup pair of glasses is advised to maintain healthy eyes for all contact lens wearers. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 46 million Americans wear contact lenses and a new report shows that 80% of wearers reported at least one behavior that put them at risk for contact related eye infections (source). 

Some of the major risks of wearing contact lenses include:

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  • Pink eye (Conjunctivitis)
  • Corneal abrasions (Scratches on the cornea)
  • Corneal edema and dryness
  • Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis
  • Corneal Ulcers
 

Of course, these conditions can also happen to non-contact lens wearers, but the chance of disease nearly doubles for those who overwear their contact lenses. Bacteria love the low oxygen environment that contact lens over wear produces. There are many benefits to wearing this amazing medical device, if used correctly. The risk of infection is lowered with proper lens handling, lens maintenance and contact lens wearing schedule. So please follow your local optometrist or optician's advice on proper care.

Buying and wearing a pair of glasses, even if it's a relatively inexpensive pair, that you enjoy will ensure good visual and eye health. Most insurance companies (medical and vision) will give a discount on glasses even if you choose to use your primary benefits towards contacts. Through VSP, if you buy a pair of glasses on the same day as contacts, they will give you a 30% discount on everything including the frame, this drops down to 20% if you purchase any day up to a month after the initial purchase of contacts lenses.

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As Halloween approaches, we as medical professionals want to remind you that buying contacts from illegal sites or without proper training can lead to serious issues that could cost you your vision. Have an enjoyable and safe Halloween celebration!  

Request an appointment with us for your Halloween contact needs.

Purchasing Contact Lenses The Safe Way

We're in the age of technology which means online retailers are popping up left and right. How to know which are safe and legal is becoming a huge problem in the U.S.. Contact Lens resellers are bound by Federal Law to upkeep the safety of the people. 

The only similarity between online retailers and retail stores is the products, and even that isn't very similar. Retailers like Hubble and websites based in other countries are supposed to follow Federal Guidelines for contacting the prescribing doctor and giving them information on the patient so we can verify it and approve it. 

Some online retailers skip this step and automatically give the patient whatever contacts they feel like. A patients eye is almost like a fingerprint, what works for one won't work for the other. There is an enormous amount of math and science your optometrist takes into consideration when picking a contact for you. Some of these include your tear film, diameter of your cornea, how curved your cornea is, etc. When a reseller doesn't verify this information, it could mean going blind for the patient!

 

Why should you purchase from a retail location?

Retail locations HAVE to verify all information at risk of losing not only the license to sell contacts, but the doctors license to practice in the US/State. Yes, the prices may be higher, but knowing that your vision will be safe for years to come and the professionals who are selling you contacts will help you and explain to you the safety for inserting and removing contacts is priceless.

We Care About the Safety of Our Patients, From the Youngest to the Oldest.

Optimum Vision and Eye Care is proud to partner with Hoya labs and offer Phoenix kids lenses for our most active patients.

 Did you know......

1 of 3 sports related Eye injuries occur in children

90% of sports related Eye injuries are preventable with proper eye protection. 

70% more UV rays penetrate the eyes of a child than an adult. 

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To schedule an appointment with Dr. Geiger at Optimum Vision and Eye Care, call 480-588-8858. 

Why A Comprehensive Eye Exam Should be on every Parent's Back to School List

Sixty percent of learning disabilities are associated with vision problems.

Eighty percent of what children learn comes through their eyes. 

 

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20/20 vision does not mean perfect vision. This is only one of many visual inputs necessary to learn and achieve. 

 

We can help. To schedule and appointment with Dr. Geiger at Optimum Vision and Eye Care, please call 480-588-8858   

We can help. To schedule and appointment with Dr. Geiger at Optimum Vision and Eye Care, please call 480-588-8858