Halloween Safety Month

Posted by CooperVision on Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Halloween is almost here, which means that scary costumes and candy are on the minds of many people. While all of this is a lot of fun, be sure to be safe especially with regards to your eyes. Here are some tips to help keep your eyes safe during Halloween:

Always Get Your Contact Lenses From An Eye Doctor

Decorative contact lenses may be tempting to don with a costume for Halloween, but remember to book an appointment with an eye doctor for any contact lenses. Since contact lenses are medical devices regulated by the Food & Drug Administration, obtaining contact lenses from a costume shop, beauty supply chain, or any place other than an eye doctor means that you are putting your eyes at risk for potentially blinding eye infections. Purchase the contact lenses from a licensed eye doctor. This ensures that the contact lenses you use are ordered from a licensed contact lens manufacturer and complies with all FDA regulations.

If blurred vision, redness, discomfort, swelling or discharge occurs, discontinue use of the contact lens immediately and see an eye doctor as soon as possible, as these may be signs of serious eye issues such as corneal abrasion, conjunctivitis, or corneal ulcer.

Avoid Pointed Objects as Costume Props

Costume props such as swords, spears, knives and wands may help make a Halloween costume more dramatic, but it can also be dangerous for your eyes. Should you get poked in the eye with a costume prop, make sure you see an eye doctor immediately.

Only Use FDA Approved Makeup Around the Eyes

Some costumes call for makeup around the eyes. Only use makeup that is approved for use around the eyes. Avoid using any makeup in the waterline (inner rim of the eye) and near the tear ducts. When removing makeup around the eyes, use an eye makeup remover instead of water and soap in order to avoid eye irritation. If the eye is red or irritated for a prolonged period of time, make sure to see an eye doctor.

Have a very safe and happy Halloween!

5 Things You Didn’t Know About Your Eyes

Posted by CooperVision on Friday, August 10, 2012

A lot of patients don’t realize it, but the human eye is an amazing organ that allows us to live our lives everyday. Here are some interesting and fun facts about the eyes that you may not have known:

  • More than half of all people in the United States use some type of lens to correct their vision. Are you one of them? Make sure to ask your eye doctor about contact lenses as an option. You can take this survey to find out which of our contact lenses are right for you and get the conversation started.
  • Your eyes keep growing after birth which is why refractive changes can occur during childhood and require corrective lenses such as contact lenses. This is why it is important for everyone to get regular eye exams because everyone’s eyes change over time.
  • All types of eye drops sting less if you store them in the refrigerator.
  • When you blink, you shut your eyes for 0.3 seconds. That’s a total of 30 minutes each day. However, when people stare at computer screens for too long, they may blink less. Blinking less can lead to eye strain, fatigue and dry eye. Make sure to talk to an eye doctor about ways to make sure you can avoid computer vision.
  • The retina is about the size of a postage stamp. It has 130 million light sensitive cells.

Did you know any of these fun eye facts? Let us know.

Fitting Children with Contact Lenses

Posted by Harvard Sylvan, OD on Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Many parents ask when it is appropriate for an eye doctor to fit children with contact lenses. As we have written before, there is no specific age limitation to children wearing contact lenses. There are even babies who have been fit with contacts. The main considerations for a parent to consider are the motivation and maturity of the child and his/her ability to insert and remove the lenses; especially when the child is not at home. A good indication of motivation is the child asking for contact lenses rather than the parent suggesting it. I have had patients as young as 8 years of age who have been successful contact lenses wearers and been very adept at inserting and removing the lenses.

There are many advantages to fitting children with contact lenses:

  • For sports and other outdoor activities: Contacts are less cumbersome than glasses, provide better peripheral vision, won’t fog up or get splattered by dirt or raindrops and eliminate the possibility of the glasses breaking and perhaps causing an eye injury.
  • For children with focusing and/or convergence problems:Often, bifocal glasses are prescribed. As most children and teenagers do not want to wear bifocal glasses, they may remove them after leaving their homes. Fitting children with contact lenses will increase the likelihood of the needed correction being worn.
  • Psychological benefit of fitting children with contact lenses:In many cases, especially if the prescription is high, fitting children with contact lenses will give them a better self image and more self confidence.

Daily disposable contacts are the ideal lenses for children. These lenses are worn during only one day and then discarded. No cleaning and disinfecting is required. A fresh, clean and comfortable lens is utilized each day the lenses are worn. Contact lens related problems are minimized when wearing one day disposable lenses. Also, if the child has allergies, one day disposable lenses are the best option for contact lens wear.

If you are considering having your child fit with contact lenses, ask your eye doctor about CooperVision’s Proclear 1 Day lenses. These lenses are made from a material that resists deposits, drying out and provides excellent all day comfort.

Children and Contact Lenses

Posted by CooperVision on Monday, August 6, 2012

When can a child safely wear contact lenses? This is a question that many parents may ask an eye doctor before school starts. The surprising answer is that physically, a child's eyes can tolerate contact lenses at a very young age. Even some infants are fitted with contact lenses due to congenital cataracts or other eye conditions present at birth. While this may be true, more than half (51%) of optometrists feel it is appropriate to introduce children to soft contact lenses between the ages of 10 and 12 years old, while nearly one in four (23%) feel 13-14 years old is a suitable age for a child to begin wearing contact lenses.

Exactly when a child patient is ready for contact lenses should be based on the patient’s maturity and ability to handle contact lenses responsibly. If a child is interested in wearing contact lenses, daily disposable contact lenses like Proclear 1 Day may be a great option. In a recent study that involved fitting myopic children of ages 8-11 with one-day disposable contact lenses, 90 percent of the kids had no trouble applying or removing the contacts without assistance from their parents.

Here are some indicators that parents can use to decide if their children are ready for contact lenses:

  • The child has consistent grooming habits and does not need to be reminded to perform tasks such as brushing their teeth.
  • The child is responsible and performs routine chores on his or her own.
  • The child follows through on schoolwork

While these are some possible signs that a child may be ready for contact lenses, the best way to decide if a child is ready is to discuss this option with the child along with an eye doctor. Click here for an eye doctor near you.

Contact Lens Tips For Patients

Posted by CooperVision on Monday, July 23, 2012

Patients who are interested in contact lenses will be happy to hear that with proper contact lens care and following a contact lens replacement schedule, contact lenses are a very healthy and popular option for correcting vision with little risk of complications. Here is a list of contact lens safety tips that you can go over with your eye doctor when you go for your next eye appointment.

Follow Your Replacement Schedule: Your eye doctor will recommend a contact replacement schedule based on what contact lenses you wear. Make sure that you replace your contact lenses when it is indicated on the schedule. If you don’t, then you can put yourself at risk for issues ranging from lid inflammation to loss of vision from an infection. Since contact lenses are a regulated medical device, the United States Food and Drug Administration(FDA) has strongly advised that it is important to follow the recommended lens wearing and replacement schedules prescribed by your eye doctor.

Wash Hands Before Handling Lenses: Washing your hands with soap and drying your hands before handling your contact lenses will prevent the transfer of germs from hands to lenses during the insertion and removal process, which can help prevent the possibility of infection. Also, make sure to avoid using lotions, oils, or hand creams on your hands before handling your contact lenses so that they don’t coat, soil, or contaminate the lens surface.

Call Your Eye Doctor If You Experience Any Symptoms: If you experience symptoms such as discomfort, excess tearing or other discharge, unusual sensitivity to light, itching, burning, gritty feelings, unusual redness, blurred vision, swelling, and pain. You should remove your lenses immediately and keep them off, and contact your eye care doctor right away. Delaying a visit to your eye doctor can put you at a higher risk of vision loss if your eye is infected.

FAQS about Daily Disposable Contact Lenses

Posted by CooperVision on Wednesday, July 18, 2012

What is a daily disposable contact lens?

A daily disposable contact lens is a contact lens that you wear for one day. A patient puts them in the morning, and then throws them away at night. Each day, the patient starts with a fresh, clean, new pair of contact lenses. CooperVision offers a daily disposable contact lens option with its Proclear 1 Day contact lenses.

Are daily disposable contact lenses easy to care for?

Since daily disposable contact lenses are replaced every day, there is little contact lens maintenance. They are convenient because there are no time-consuming cleaning regimens to remember, and no solutions to buy.

Are daily disposable contact lenses comfortable?

Proclear 1 Day contact lenses are made with a unique lens material, with PC Hydration Technology™, that contains molecules found naturally in human cell membranes. These molecules attract and surround themselves with water, keeping your disposable contact lenses moist and comfortable, even after 12 hours of wear.

I have allergies and avoid wearing contact lenses. Are daily disposable contact lenses are a good option for me?

Proteins and allergens don't have time to build up on your lenses because you will be using a fresh new lens every day. This is especially helpful to those with seasonal ocular allergies.

How do I know what contact lenses are right for me?

Deciding which contact lenses are right for you is something that an eye doctor can help you with. Based on your vision correction needs, lifestyle, and preferences, an eye doctor will be able to guide you to the right contact lens for you. To get started, you can use CooperVision’s Find A Lens quiz. Take this quiz to find out how to choose contact lenses that could help you enjoy the best in vision, health, and comfort. Be sure to print your results and bring them to your next appointment to help start the conversation with your eye doctor.

Common Eye Myths

Posted by CooperVision on Monday, June 18, 2012

Many patients may have heard lots of advice from their parents to eat carrots for great vision, and not to read with poor lighting, but do they know which pieces of advice are actually eye myths? Here are some common eye myths debunked:

Sitting in front of the TV or computer will harm your eyes

While patients who do this will experience eye strain, the pain is temporary. It is painful because patients are not blinking as often as they should when they are looking at a screen for long periods of time. Not blinking enough can lead to dry eyes. Doing the 20/20/20 rule can help alleviate the painful effects of dry eye. Every 20 minutes, take your eyes off your computer and look at something 20 feet away for at least 20 seconds. Some other solutions for dry eye are to blink often and use artificial tear drops.

Eating carrots improve your vision

While diet can certainly help improve the health of a patient’s eyes, eating carrots does not enhance vision. Vitamin A defiency is linked with poorer vision, but an abundance of the vitamin will not ensure eagle eyes. Some super foods to eat for healthier vision are: leafy greens, egg yolks, and nuts.

Reading in dim light ruins your vision

While reading with poor lighting can give patients a headache and some eye strain, it won’t worsen their vision or damage their eyes. However, for reading comfort, it does help to read with a bright light. Eye strain from reading in dim lighting may result in a number of physical effects including sore or itching eyeballs, headaches, back and neck aches and blurred vision. None of these symptoms damage a patient’s eyes, and the effect eventually goes away.

Wearing eyeglasses or contact lenses makes you dependent to them

Using vision correction does not accelerate the deterioration of a patient’s vision. Patients may notice that as they get used to clearer vision with their contact lenses or eyeglasses they will use them more, but it does not make them dependent on vision correction.

If you’re a eye care patient who needs a possible eye myth debunked, make sure to talk to an eye care practitioner near you.

All About Low Vision

Posted by CooperVision on Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Low vision is a term that is used for patients that have visual acuities ranging from 20/70 or lower and can’t be fully corrected with glasses, contacts, or surgery. Patients with low vision are different from patients who are blind because low vision patients have some useful sight. However, many low vision patients are not able to perform daily tasks such as reading, driving, or even differentiating colors and shapes from a distance.

There are a variety of causes of low vision. Some of the most common causes of low vision are:

  • Macular Degeneration
  • Birth Defects
  • Diabetes
  • Glaucoma
  • Cataracts
  • Injuries
  • Inherited Diseases
  • Aging

The loss of vision can be devastating for some patients; especially once they learn that their vision can never be restored. It is important for patients to see an eye care professional if they experience symptoms of vision loss. Some symptoms of vision loss are:

  • Not being able to read
  • Not being able to write
  • Having a hard time watching television
  • Not being able to shop
  • Being unable to drive
  • Having a hard time recognizing faces
Another symptom low vision patients may encounter is known as Charles Bonnet Syndrome. This is when patients see things that are not really there. This is not a mental issue. This is simply the brain trying to replace images that the eye can’t see. These symptoms can often startle or upset patients. However, it is important to remember that patients with low vision have support groups, visual aids, and other resources available to them. For more information on low vision resources, click here.

About On Eye

On Eye is the contact lens blog from CooperVision. On this site, you will find insights about fitting, technology, and the business of contact lenses. The On Eye blog is designed to meet the needs of both Eye Care Practitioners and consumers. ECP and medical professional-specific portions of the blog will be password protected in order to protect and reserve the privacy of the profession. To read more about our terms of use, please see the Legal tab.

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