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Children’s Eye Health and Safety Month

Children’s Eye Health and Safety Month

August is Children’s Eye Health and Safety Month! This month, Larson Eye Care is answering common questions parents have about their children’s eye health. When should children receive their first eye exam? Parents should have their children’s eyes examined during well-child visits starting at around age three. During this exam, your child’s eye doctor will look for refractive errors (nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism), as well as other common childhood eye conditions like amblyopia (lazy eye), strabismus (crossed eyes), ptosis (drooping eyelid), and color deficiency (color blindness). If you notice any warning signs that your child has vision problems, there’s no need to wait for an annual exam – schedule an appointment ASAP! What are the warning signs of vision problems in children? Your child may have vision problems if they experience: Crossed or wandering eyesFrequent blinking or eye rubbingDisinterest in reading or viewing distant objectsCovering one eyeSquinting or turning their head while watching television If your child is experiencing any of these symptoms, it’s a good idea to schedule them for an eye exam. My child injured their eye while playing. What should I do? Don’t delay! Eye injuries are the leading cause of vision loss in children. If you suspect your child has injured their eye, bring them to a doctor as soon as possible. To avoid injury, make sure to purchase age-appropriate toys and avoid toys with sharp edges. Many eye injuries occur...
Keeping your eyes safe from fireworks

Keeping your eyes safe from fireworks

In the month surrounding the Fourth of July, an average of 280 people go to the emergency room each day with fireworks-related injuries. This July, Larson Eye Care encourages our community to take care when using backyard fireworks. Fireworks safety 101 Every year, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission publishes an annual report about fireworks-related injuries and deaths. Last year, fireworks were involved in five deaths and an estimated 9,100 injuries treated in U.S. hospital emergency departments. More than half of these injuries (62%) occurred between June 22ndand July 22nd.  Although people most frequently injure their hands (28% of all fireworks-related injuries) and legs (24% of all injuries), eye injuries are also very common, making up 19% of all fireworks-related injuries. Fireworks can result in chemical and thermal burns, corneal abrasions, retinal detachment, or even a ruptured globe, all of which can result in permanent vision loss. The American Academy of Ophthalmology recommends the following safety tips when using fireworks: Do not allow young children to play with fireworks, including sparklers. Sparklers can get up to 2000 degrees Fahrenheit and can even melt some metals.Older children should only use fireworks under close adult supervision.Make sure to set off fireworks outside in a clear area away from houses, dry leaves, grass, or any other flammable materials.Do not experiment with homemade fireworks.Store fireworks in a...
Cataracts: Myths and Facts

Cataracts: Myths and Facts

June is Cataract Awareness Month! Every year, the organization Prevent Blindness America along with the American Academy of Ophthalmology encourages Americans to be mindful of the signs and symptoms associated with cataracts. This year, we’ve decided to outline several common myths about cataracts.  Have you heard any of these before? Myth: Cataracts only affect older adults Cataracts are most common in older adults, but it’s still possible to develop a cataract when you’re young. Factors like long-term steroid use, UV exposure, eye injuries, smoking, and diabetes can increase your risk of developing cataracts at any age. Myth: Cataracts are always visible Sometimes cataracts are visible. During their early stages, however, your eyes may look completely normal. If you’ve been having problems with your vision lately, you will need a thorough examination to rule out cataracts. Myth: The only symptom of a cataract is cloudy vision Since a cataract is a clouding of the eye’s natural lens, it makes sense that your vision might appear cloudier if you have a cataract. That being said, there are a number of other symptoms associated with cataracts including decreased night vision, light sensitivity, double vision in a single eye, seeing “halos” around lights, and experiencing faded colors. Myth: Cataracts are equally likely in men and women Cataracts are actually more common in women than men. According to the National Eye Institute, 61 percent of Americans with...
Happy Healthy Vision Month!

Happy Healthy Vision Month!

Did you know that most vision problems are preventable? Every May, the National Eye Institute (NEI) celebrates Healthy Vision Month, an awareness campaign designed to encourage healthy, sight-saving habits.  This year, NEI is focusing on young adults between the ages 25 to 35. While people in this age group typically have healthy vision, it’s important to promote good habits early on to prevent future vision loss. The NEI recommends the following tips to keep your eyes healthy: Wear sunglasses Sunglasses are more than just a fashion accessory – they also protect your eyes from ultraviolet (UV) radiation. UV damage can increase your risk of developing cataracts, so keep those shades handy! Eat well Maintaining a healthy diet is essential for eye health. The NEI recommends consuming a diet rich in fruits and vegetables, particularly dark leafy greens like spinach and kale. They also recommend eating fish with high levels of omega-3 fatty acids including salmon, tuna, and halibut. Exercise According to the NEI, “anything that gets your heart beating faster” is good for your eye health. High blood pressure and diabetes are linked to eye disease, so it’s a good idea to keep yourself in shape. Wear eye protection People with sports-related eye injuries arrive in the ER every 13 minutes! If you’re participating in sports, proper eye protection is a must. Work-related eye injuries are also remarkably common, affecting 2000 Americans each year. Follow the 20-20-20 rule If you...
Which sport causes the most eye injuries?

Which sport causes the most eye injuries?

April is Sports Eye Safety Month. This month, Larson Eye Care encourages all our patients to wear proper eye protection when participating in athletic activities. Potential eye injuries that can result from sports include corneal abrasions, orbital fractures, detached retina, and even cataracts. In some instances, people have even had their eyes dislodged from their sockets. But which sports are the most dangerous for your vision? Basketball Basketball is the leading cause of eye injuries in children. Protective eyewear made from polycarbonate lenses is the best way to keep your eyes safe during basketball. Right now, there’s a viral video of a basketball player whose eye was dislodged from his socket – we don’t recommend watching it. Baseball Baseball is another leading cause of eye injuries among children 14 years and younger, with flying bats and careening balls as the main culprits. Certified helmets with attached safety glasses (for batters and base runners) and protective eyewear for fielders can protect your vision. Racquet sports Racquet sports include badminton, table tennis, tennis, squash, and racquetball. Since these sports rely on quickly reacting to fast-moving balls, it’s no wonder they have a high incidence of eye injuries. Once again, protective eyewear with polycarbonate lenses is a must. Although basketball, baseball, and racquet sports are responsible for the bulk of eye-related injuries, other sports can also pose risks to your eye...
What are common causes of blurry vision?

What are common causes of blurry vision?

Have you been experiencing blurry vision lately? Step away from WebMD and try not to panic – there are many normal reasons why you may be experiencing this mild visual disturbance. Below, we’ve outlined some of the more common causes of blurry vision. You need to get glasses – or update your prescription. Do you wear glasses or contacts? If not, you might need to start. Although most people develop nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism when they’re younger, your eyes are constantly changing. If you already wear glasses, it might be time to update your prescription! You need reading glasses. If you’re older than 40 and find it difficult to read menus, newspapers, or other small print, it might be time for reading glasses. Presbyopia, or the diminished ability to focus on close objects, is a common and natural part of aging.Reading glasses and bifocals aren’t the only way to treat presbyopia – there are also surgical options such as corneal inlays and monovision LASIK. You’re pregnant. It might sound farfetched, but the hormonal changes associated with pregnancy can alter the shape and thickness of your cornea, making your vision blurry. Dry eyes are another common culprit for blurry vision during pregnancy. Although blurry vision is relatively common during pregnancy, it’s important that you report it to your doctor. In some cases, it could indicate gestational diabetes or high blood pressure. You’re experiencing side effects from a medication. Have you started...