Skip to main content
laguna-beach-sunset-e1506369826338
Home »

News

Here’s How To Choose The Perfect Pair Of Glasses!

optical store near you

Nowadays, there are so many choices for eyeglass frames, it can make your head spin. Of course, these endless options also come with benefits: there are frames to suit every face, style and fashion trend.

Having all these choices is exciting, but can be overwhelming if you don’t know what you’re looking for.

In order to pick the perfect pair, it’s good to have a basic understanding of the different materials, features and styles out there, so you can make an informed decision.

Try to keep in mind that although you may be looking for that ‘wow’ factor, comfort, durability and quality are key. After all, you’ll likely be wearing your new specs for a good part of your day.

Here are 5 tips to help you find the glasses that most suit you and your lifestyle:

1. Know Your Material Options

Eyeglass frames come in a variety of materials. Your winning pair can be made from metal, plastic or even wood.

Metal

Metal frames can be found in a wide range of styles and are renowned for their strength and durability. But not all metal frames are the same. There’s a range of metals used for eyeglass frames, each with their own advantages:

  • Titanium: Hypoallergenic, strong, durable, lightweight and corrosion-resistant.
  • Beryllium: Strong, lightweight, flexible, corrosion-resistant and less expensive than titanium.
  • Steel: Strong, lightweight (but heavier than titanium), corrosion-resistant and less expensive than most other metal frames.
  • Monel: Flexible and corrosion-resistant, but contains a combination of metals — so not a first choice if you’re hypersensitive to any type of metal.
  • Aluminum: Flexible, strong, corrosion-resistant, but typically more expensive than other metal frames.
  • Flexon: Very flexible, lightweight, hypoallergenic and corrosion-resistant.

Plastic

Plastic frames are available in a dizzying variety of shapes, styles and colors. They offer a bolder look than metal frames and are often less expensive as well. But plastic frames don’t offer the same degree of durability that metal frames do, so if you’re looking for longer-lasting frames, this is something to consider before making your purchase.

Wood

Wooden frames aren’t only trendy; they’re also very lightweight and comfortable. Wooden frames are made of pure, natural wood and are stained using plant-based treatments — making them an eco-friendly option. They’re also a great choice if you’re looking for a hypoallergenic frame.

2. Understand that Size Does Matter

Eyeglass frames come in so many different sizes. You may want to opt for a smaller frame for reading glasses, but for all day-wear consider a larger frame that will give you a larger viewing window and a wider peripheral view.

3. Choose Comfort

Bridge Fit

Your eyeglasses should sit comfortably on the bridge of your nose. If they’re too big, you’ll constantly be pushing them up, and if they’re too small, they’ll sit too high or pinch your nose.

Temple Style

The temples of your eyeglasses are what secure your frames to your face. They connect the front of the frames to the back of the ears, and sometimes wrap around the head. Most frame temples range from 120 to 150 mm in length. To check that your glasses fit properly, move your head from side to side and even bend down at the waist (it’s worth it!) to make sure that the frames you choose won’t easily fall off.

4. Consider Flexibility

If you lead an active lifestyle, have young children, or sometimes fall asleep with your glasses on, you may want to consider spring hinges. Spring hinges give your temples greater flexibility, making them less likely to break if they’re grabbed or bent the wrong way.

5. Try Different Styles

Not sure which shape or color suits you best? Try on as many frames as you’d like until you find a style that you love. You can either pick a frame that matches your face shape and hair color or decide to be a bit more daring and go for a more striking look. Your options are endless.

When it comes to your vision, we’re here for you. Contact Laguna Eyes Optometry in Laguna Beach to check out our large selection of eyewear. We’ll help you find the perfect pair, with the perfect fit.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Are metal frames strong enough for sports?

  • A: While metal frames can withstand a certain amount of wear and tear, they aren’t recommended for sports. If you play sports on a regular basis, protective eyewear is the way to go. Protective eyewear, like sports goggles and wraparound frames, not only contain high-impact-resistant polycarbonate lenses, but are also lined with rubber padding to protect your eyes from injury.

Q: Is one pair of eyeglasses enough?

  • A: Depending on your lifestyle and visual needs, one pair of eyeglasses may not suffice.Here are some questions to ask yourself when deciding if you need a second pair of glasses:
      • Do you lead an active lifestyle? If so, it’s important to have a back-up pair of glasses, just in case.
      • Do you have two different optical prescriptions? Some people prefer two different pairs of glasses over wearing bifocal or multifocal lenses.
      • Do you worry about breaking or losing your glasses and having to scramble to order another pair?
      • Do you want your frames to match your wardrobe? Then you may want to think about purchasing more than one frame.

Quality Frames For Prescription Eyeglasses & Computer Glasses. Visit Laguna Eyes Optometry for an eye exam and eyeglasses that match your style.


What Exactly is an Eye Chart?

If there’s one aspect of optometry that everyone recognizes, it’s the traditional eye chart, with its rows of big letters on top, which gradually become smaller the farther down you go. This chart is usually known as the Snellen chart.

Yet how much do you really know about this eye chart? Are all eye charts the same? How are these eye charts used? And when were they invented?

Here’s everything you need to know about eye charts and more!

What is an Eye Chart?

An eye chart is one of the tools your eye doctor uses to assess your eyesight. Based on how well you can see various letters on the chart, your optometrist will determine whether you have myopia (nearsightedness), hyperopia (farsightedness), presbyopia (age-related farsightedness) or astigmatism, and will measure the prescription that will give you the clearest, most comfortable vision.

Are All Eye Charts The Same?

There are a number of variations to the standard Snellen eye chart. The one an eye doctor uses depends on the personal needs and abilities of the patient. For example, eye doctors will use charts with pictures or patterns for younger children who may not have learned to read or identify letters and numbers.

There are also certain charts that specifically measure distance vision, while others are better for measuring near vision.

History of the Snellen Eye Chart

The Snellen eye chart was developed by Dutch eye doctor Hermann Snellen in the 1860s. Before this standardized eye chart was developed, each eye doctor had their own chart that they preferred to use.

Having so many different eye charts made it impossible to standardize the vision correction available to patients. Eyeglass makers didn’t receive the defined measurements they needed to accurately design, manufacture and measure the optical prescriptions their patients needed.

For the first time, the Snellen eye chart allowed a person to provide a standardized prescription from any eye care provider they chose to any eyeglass maker, and get the same optical lenses to accurately correct their vision.

How The Snellen Chart Is Used in Eye Exams

The standard Snellen chart displays 11 rows of capital letters, with the first row consisting of a single large letter. The farther down the chart you go, the smaller the letters become.

Your eye doctor will ask you to look through a phoropter – an instrument used to test individual lenses on each eye during an eye exam – and look at the Snellen chart placed 20 feet away. Your eye doctor will prescribe the lenses that provide you with the clearest and most comfortable vision.

In many offices, where 20 feet of space may not be available, you’ll be asked to view the chart through a mirror. This provides the same visual experience as if you were standing 20 feet away.

If you have 20/20 vision, it means you can see what an average person can see on an eye chart from a distance of 20 feet. On the other hand, if you have 20/40 vision, it means you can only see clearly from 20 feet away what a person with perfect vision can see clearly from 40 feet away.

If you have 20/200 vision, the legal definition of blindness, this means what a person with perfect vision can see from 200 feet away, you can see from 20 feet away.

Does 20/20 Visual Acuity Mean Perfect Vision?

No. While eye chart tests identify refractive errors, they can’t detect signs of visual skill deficiencies or diseases such as glaucoma, cataracts or macular degeneration. These are diagnosed using advanced equipment as part of a comprehensive eye exam with your local eye doctor. Early diagnosis and treatment of eye conditions are essential to ensuring long-term vision and eye health.

For more information, give us a call at or visit us in person at , today!

Q&A With Your Local Optometrist

How do you keep your eyes healthy?

You only have one set of eyes – don’t take them for granted!

Make sure to implement the following habits for healthy eyes (and body). These include:

  • Eating a balanced diet rich in fiber, fruits and vegetables
  • Drinking plenty of water to hydrate your body and eyes
  • Not smoking, and avoiding 2nd-hand smoke
  • Wearing sunglasses to protect your eyes from ultraviolet (UV) rays
  • Maintaining normal BMI with regular exercise
  • Regular visits to your eye doctor as recommended

What health conditions can an eye exam detect?

A comprehensive eye exam can often detect certain underlying diseases that can threaten your sight and eye health, such as diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, tumors, autoimmune conditions and thyroid disorders. This is why having your eyes checked regularly is key. The earlier the diagnosis and treatment, the better the outcome and the higher your quality of life.

Protect Your Eyes This Spring by Adopting These 5 Habits

eye eyem near you

Spring is in the air! The warm weather, blossoming flowers and smell of freshly cut grass is a welcome relief for anyone who’s ready to put winter behind them. Walks in the park. Barbecues. Playgrounds full of children.

Despite all the spring excitement, it’s important to know that the change in weather can affect your eyes in more ways than one — from prolonged UV exposure and a heightened risk of eye injuries to dry eyes and allergies.

Here are 5 practical ways to protect your eyes this season:

1. Wear Sunglasses with 100% UV Protection

UV protection isn’t only essential for your skin, but also for your eyes.

Prolonged unprotected exposure to the sun’s strong UVA and UVB rays can cause ‘eye sunburn’ (photokeratitis), and UV exposure over months or years can put you at risk of developing sight-threatening eye diseases in the future.

Which is why sunglasses are more than just a fashion accessory. When shopping for sunglasses, look for the label that says ‘100% UV protection.’ This way, you can enjoy the sun without a second thought for your eyes.

And if you believe sunglasses are only meant for sunny days, think again. The sun’s UV rays are so powerful that they penetrate through the clouds and reflect off of water, snow, ice, concrete and many other surfaces.

So before you head out the door, be sure to grab a pair of shades. For even greater protection, also wear a cap or wide-brimmed hat.

2. Drink Plenty of Water

Drinking water — especially on a hot day— is important not only for your overall health, but the health of your eyes. If your body becomes dehydrated your eyes will too, which can lead to symptoms of dry eye and other complications.

Many doctors recommend drinking six 8-ounce glasses of water each day, and more if you’re playing sports or spending lots of time in the sun. So keep a bottle of water close by and drink, drink, drink!

3. Hydrate Your Eyes

Sometimes, drinking water isn’t enough to keep dry eye symptoms at bay.

If your eyes are dry, irritated, itchy or bloodshot, you may have dry eye syndrome. Dry air and wind, air-conditioning and heating systems, certain medications and medical conditions can all cause dry eyes.

Call Laguna Eyes Optometry in Laguna Beach to schedule a dry eye assessment and learn about your treatment options.

4. Wear Protective Eyewear

The beautiful spring weather calls for outdoor sports, bonfires, barbeques — and in some places, fireworks. Although these activities may be fun, they also pose a risk to your eye health and vision.

To protect your eyes from injury and exposure to extreme heat and smoke, make sure to wear protective eyewear like sports goggles or specialized glasses with polycarbonate lenses.

Most eye injuries can be prevented with the right kind of eye protection.

5. Seek Allergy Relief

Does the mere thought of springtime make your eyes tear and your nose run? You’re not alone. Seasonal allergies are common, and can be frustrating, especially when you’ve been looking forward to spending more time outdoors.

If you suffer from eye allergies, even a morning jog around the block can have you rubbing your eyes for the rest of the day.

Fortunately, there are ways to effectively treat eye allergies and make irritated, itchy eyes a thing of the past.

Contact Laguna Eyes Optometry in Laguna Beach to learn about the different dry eye and allergy treatments we offer, or to choose eyewear that protects your eyes from sun exposure and injury. We’re here to help you protect your eyes this spring and always.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What is Dry Eye syndrome?

A: Dry eye syndrome (DES) is a chronic condition that occurs when your eyes don’t produce enough tears, or there is insufficient oil in your tears.

Some of the most common causes of DES include:

  • Environmental factors – living in a dry, dusty or windy climate
  • Hormonal changes – especially during pregnancy and menopause
  • Certain medications – antihistamines, blood pressure medications and antidepressants, among others
  • Eyelid conditions – like meibomian gland dysfunction and blepharitis
  • Post-LASIK surgery

Symptoms can be mild or severe and cause your eyes to feel dry, sore, itchy, and watery. Treatment for DES varies, depending on the underlying cause, but can range anywhere from medicated eye drops and ointments to in-office procedures.

Q: How are eye allergies treated?

A: The most effective way to treat your eye allergies is to first find out what’s causing them.

Eye allergies can be triggered by:

  • Airborne substances found in nature such as pollen from flowers, grass and trees
  • Indoor allergens such as pet dander, dust and mold
  • Irritants such as cosmetics, chemicals, cigarette smoke and perfume

To alleviate your symptoms, your eye doctor may recommend OTC lubricating eye drops, medicated eye drops that replace the oil in your tears, or eye drops (or oral medications) that contain an antihistamine.

If these eye drops don’t provide enough relief, your eye doctor can discuss a range of in-office treatments or prescribe a stronger medication to provide long-lasting relief for your allergic eyes.

Quality Frames For Prescription Eyeglasses & Computer Glasses. Visit Laguna Eyes Optometry for an eye exam and eyeglasses that match your style.


The Link Between Dry Eyes and Depression

The Link Between Dry Eyes and Depression 640×350Depression is a serious illness that impacts a person’s mood and emotional well-being. It creeps into all areas of a person’s life, and can become life-threatening if left untreated.

Not only does depression impact mental health; it can manifest as physical symptoms, too, like insomnia, chronic pain and inflammation, weight loss or gain and heart problems, among others. These physical problems can worsen depressive thoughts — sometimes leading to a vicious cycle.

Interestingly, many patients with depression also suffer from severe dry eye symptoms. The question is, how are these two conditions related?

What is Dry Eye Syndrome?

Dry eye syndrome, also known as dry eye disease, is a chronic condition that results from inadequate lubrication of the eyes. Ocular hydration is crucial when it comes to keeping your eyes healthy and your vision clear. Your tears are responsible for maintaining this necessary hydration, and in healthy eyes fulfill their unique mission each time you blink.

Your tear film is made up of three layers, consisting of oil, water and mucus. If any of these layers become compromised, inadequate tear quality or insufficient tear quantity can result and lead to a host of uncomfortable dry eye symptoms.

The most common dry eye symptoms include:

  • Dry eyes
  • Red or irritated eyes
  • Itchy eyes
  • Gritty eyes
  • Light sensitivity
  • Blurry vision

Can Depression Cause Dry Eye (or Vice-Versa)?

This is what researchers are trying to find out.

In a March 2022 study published in JAMA Ophthalmology, researchers examined the link between depression and severe dry eye symptoms. The study followed 535 dry eye patients for an entire year.

After a year, the patients who tested positive for depression had more severe dry eye symptoms than the patients who didn’t have depression. Their symptoms were measured based on the Ocular Surface Disease Index (OSDI), Brief Ocular Discomfort Index and composite dry eye disease sign score.

Additionally, severe depression was associated with more severe dry eye symptoms at baseline, six months, and one year.

The study concluded that depression was associated with more severe dry eye symptoms, which suggests that among patients with moderate to severe dry eye syndrome, those with depression may be likely to have more severe dry eye symptoms.

The researchers said further research is needed to learn exactly why people with depression have more severe dry eye symptoms than those without depression.

Could the sometimes debilitating symptoms of dry eye syndrome actually cause depression and anxiety?

A 2016 dry eye study published in Nature concluded that chronic discomfort and pain from dry eye symptoms can negatively affect the cognitive processes, sleep, mood and mental health. The researchers urged eye doctors to be aware of the higher incidence of dry eye syndrome in people with depression, whatever the underlying cause.

Can Antidepressants Cause Dry Eye Symptoms?

Yes. Antidepressants have been shown to increase dryness in the body, including the eyes. These medications work by blocking signals between nerve cells, which can result in insufficient tear production and dry eye syndrome.

If you’re taking an antidepressant, be sure to inform your eye doctor during your consultation.

How We Can Help

At Laguna Eyes Dry Eye Center in Laguna Beach, we recognize that some of our patients that come in with dry eye symptoms may be suffering from depression.

We’ll diagnose the cause of your dry eye symptoms and offer the most effective dry eye treatments to give you the relief you’re searching for.

Contact us today to schedule a dry eye assessment and take the first step towards regaining your quality of life.

Frequently Asked Questions with Dr. Alicia Harrison

Q: Who is affected by dry eye syndrome?

  • A: While dry eye syndrome is most common in adults over 50, it can occur at any age. The following factors can increase your risk of dry eye:
    – Aging
    – Hormonal changes
    – Medical conditions such as Sjogren’s syndrome and rheumatoid arthritis
    – Prolonged screen time
    – Living in a dry, dusty or windy environment
    – Eye allergies
    – Blepharitis or meibomian gland dysfunction
    – Certain medications, such as decongestants, antihistamines, antidepressants, hormone replacement therapy
    – Vitamin A deficiency

Q: How can you reduce your risk of dry eye?

  • A: While some dry eye risk factors can’t be avoided completely, making some lifestyle changes can help. Practice these recommended tips:
    – Use a humidifier to add moisture to the air
    – Wear wraparound sunglasses outdoors to protect your eyes from harsh winds
    – Take frequent screen breaks and blink often while using your digital device.
    – Quit smoking
    – Use lubricating eye drops
    – Consume a healthy diet including omega 3 and drink plenty of water.
    – Have regular eye exams

Book An Appointment
Call 949-528-8005

Could Your Sudden Vision Problems Be Related to Stress?

eye exam optometrist near you

Everyday life can be stressful. With deadlines, work, social commitments and pandemic concerns — to name a few — we’re constantly being tested and pushed to the limit.

Researchers are trying to determine exactly why stress appears to affect eye health and cause a range of eye and vision problems.

Note: Before assuming that your vision problems are stress-related, schedule a prompt eye exam with your optometrist to rule out an underlying eye condition. If you come out with a clean bill of health, try some of the relaxation tips below to help relieve your symptoms.

How Does Stress Affect the Eyes?

When you’re stressed, your body releases cortisol, the hormone that’s responsible for stimulating your ‘fight-or-flight’ response.

Picture meeting a wild dog on your morning jog or speaking in front of a huge crowd. The mere thought of it can trigger a physical reaction in your body.

When faced with a potentially threatening or frightening situation you may feel your heart beating faster as your blood pressure rises and your breathing becoming more rapid, leaving you feeling breathless.

All of these physiological reactions help to prepare your body to fight your potential threat or run away from the dangerous situation. (It also explains the sweaty palms, dizziness and nausea we’ve all experienced at one time or other during a stressful event.)

Unfortunately, this surge of cortisol can disrupt the healthy blood flow between your eyes and brain, and lead to vision problems.

Moreover, chronic high stress has been linked to elevated intraocular pressure — the pressure inside your eyes — which increases your risk of optic nerve damage and glaucoma.

In a ground-breaking study published in the EPMA Journal in 2018, researchers investigated the link between stress and being diagnosed with a serious eye disease. While prolonged mental stress is clearly a consequence of vision loss, they said, it may also worsen eye conditions ”and be one of the major causes of visual system diseases such as glaucoma and optic neuropathy.”

This creates a “vicious cycle” where initial vision loss creates stress, which further accelerates vision loss, creating even more stress, the researchers concluded.

Symptoms of Stress-Related Eye Problems

  • Blurry vision
  • Headaches
  • Eye strain
  • Eye floaters
  • Dry eye
  • Sensitivity to bright light
  • Eyelid twitch

How to Treat Stress-Related Vision Problems

Your stress-related visual symptoms should fade once your mind and body are relaxed.

Therefore, the best way to treat your visual symptoms is to de-stress.

Managing your stress levels is one of the biggest gifts you can give yourself, so make self-care a priority — your future self will thank you.

Here are some tips to help you unwind and keep stress levels to a minimum:

  • Meditate
  • Practice deep breathing
  • Eat healthy
  • Exercise daily
  • Get outside
  • Journal your thoughts
  • Get enough sleep
  • Join a support group

If your visual symptoms don’t improve, contact Laguna Eyes Optometry in Laguna Beach for an appointment.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Can excessive screen time cause visual stress?

  • A: In recent years, the amount of time people spend in front of the screen has increased dramatically. Prolonged screen time and digital device usage can lead to a condition called ‘digital eye strain’, which typically causes blurry vision, eye strain, headaches, dry eyes, and neck and shoulder pain. Digital eye strain can worsen visual stress, so try to limit your screen time as much as possible.

Q: What can I do to maintain healthy vision?

  • A: Many of the same healthy habits that protect your general health and keep your stress levels to a minimum also promote healthy eyesight:
    • Eat a balanced diet rich in fiber, fruits and vegetables
    • Drink plenty of water to hydrate your body and eyes
    • Avoid smoking
    • Wear ultraviolet (UV) protected sunglasses when outside
    • Take appropriate vitamin supplements

Quality Frames For Prescription Eyeglasses & Computer Glasses. Visit Laguna Eyes Optometry for an eye exam and eyeglasses that match your style.


Bloodshot Eyes – Should You Be Concerned?

You wake up in the morning ready to start your day, only to discover that your eyes are bloodshot. That might not be surprising if you stayed up late to finish a project, had too many drinks at a party or spent time in a smoke-filled room.

But bloodshot eyes can also signal an underlying eye problem. If your eyes appear red or bloodshot, make an appointment with an eye doctor for a comprehensive eye exam to determine the cause and to receive effective treatment.

Why Do I Have Bloodshot Eyes?

When blood rushes to the front of the eye, the tiny red blood vessels on the white of the eye dilate and become visible. This makes the eyes appear red and irritated.

So why do these blood vessels dilate, causing your eyes to look bloodshot?

Bloodshot eyes tend to be caused by:

  • Dry eyes
  • Irritants such as smoke, pollen and perfume
  • Lack of sleep
  • Excessive alcohol consumption
  • Spending too much time in front of the computer

Bloodshot eyes due to lifestyle and environmental irritants may disappear on their own, or you can try to relieve them with over-the-counter eye drops or liquid tears. Lifestyle changes, such as getting more sleep, cutting down on alcohol intake and limiting screen time can often be helpful. If allergies are the culprit, oral antihistamines and antihistamine eye drops may relieve symptoms.

At other times, underlying problems requiring prompt medical attention can cause your eye’s blood vessels to dilate. The following are some of these medical conditions:

Conjunctivitis

You’ve probably heard of “pink eye.” It’s another name for infectious conjunctivitis – an infection of the conjunctiva, the thin membrane covering the eyelid and the front surface of the eye.

There are two types of infectious conjunctivitis – bacterial and viral.

If your child has conjunctivitis, they’re not alone. About 12% of kids get bacterial conjunctivitis every year. This highly contagious condition affects children and adults. In addition to reddish eyes, the following symptoms are associated with conjunctivitis:

  • Bacterial conjunctivitis – irritated eyes, swollen eyelids, eye discharge, crusty eyelids and excessive tearing
  • Viral conjunctivitis – cold or flu-like symptoms, runny nose, fever, itchy eyes, excessive tearing

If you or your child are experiencing these symptoms, it’s important to schedule a prompt appointment with an eye doctor, who can diagnose whether the conjunctivitis is viral, bacterial or due to allergies.

Depending on the diagnosis, your eye doctor will prescribe antibiotic eye drops or creams to treat bacterial conjunctivitis. The viral form may run its course after a few days, but cold compresses and non-prescription eye drops may provide relief.

Dry Eye Syndrome

If your eyes are chronically bloodshot you may have dry eye syndrome (DES). Signs of DES include:

  • Dry, irritated eyes
  • Burning or stinging eyes
  • Discharge from the eyes
  • Light sensitivity
  • A feeling you have something stuck in your eyes
  • Blurred vision
  • Watery eyes

Dry eye syndrome is most commonly caused by a blockage of the tiny meibomian glands in the eyelids. These glands secrete oil that keeps eye moisture from evaporating too quickly. Without the oil, tears dry fast, leaving your eyes feeling dry, itchy and with a bloodshot appearance.

Too much screen time, aging, certain medications such as antihistamines, and medical conditions such as Sjogren’s syndrome can cause dry eye syndrome.

In addition to any medications or in-office treatments your eye doctor recommends, make sure to get plenty of hydration, take frequent breaks from digital screens and use a humidifier in your home.

Uveitis

In addition to bloodshot eyes, if you also experience blurred vision, see floaters or your eyes feel painful, you may have an eye inflammation called uveitis. The causes of uveitis include:

  • Autoimmune or inflammatory condition
  • Infection
  • Medication side effects
  • Cancer (in rare cases)

Unfortunately, uveitis symptoms can often be mistaken for something less serious. That’s the reason it’s important to get an eye exam if your eyes are bloodshot. Left untreated, uveitis can lead to serious conditions such as retinal scarring, cataracts and vision loss.

Depending on the cause and severity, your eye doctor may treat uveitis with prescription eye drops, steroid pills, injections or eye implants.

Eye Injury

It’s vital that all eye injuries receive immediate eye care from an eye doctor.

Even a minor eye injury can cause a big red blotch to form on the white part of the eye (sclera). The cause is a broken blood vessel or a subconjunctival hemorrhage.

Although the appearance of this blood looks severe, and can make the entire white part of the eye appear bright red, a subconjunctival hemorrhage is usually painless and doesn’t cause vision loss. Any time you notice excessive blood on the eye following an eye injury, schedule an appointment with an eye doctor to assess the health of your eye.

Glaucoma

In rare cases, bloodshot eyes may signal the presence of glaucoma – a leading cause of vision loss and blindness.

While some types of glaucoma don’t show symptoms in the early phases, bloodshot eyes can indicate the type of glaucoma that requires immediate medical care. This disease causes damage to the optic nerve due to excessive pressure within the eye. When this pressure suddenly rises, the eye’s blood vessels become dilated and visible, making the eye appear red.

If you have bloodshot eyes and/or have the following risk factors for glaucoma, immediately schedule an appointment with your eye doctor.

  • Family history of glaucoma
  • Aged 60+
  • African American, Asian or Hispanic
  • Diabetes
  • High blood pressure

Bloodshot Eyes Won’t Go Away?

Talk to Us Any time you notice bloodshot eyes or blood on the front of the eye, don’t wait. Schedule your eye exam with Dr. Alicia Harrison at Laguna Eyes Optometry in Laguna Beach today.

Q&A With Your Local Optometrist

Can I get bloodshot eyes after LASIK surgery?

LASIK surgery is highly effective minimally invasive laser eye surgery that can correct refractive errors, but like all surgical procedures, it can have side effects. Your eyes may be bloodshot or you could see halos from a few days to three weeks after surgery. Additionally, you may experience other dry eye symptoms. Eye drops and liquid tears can alleviate these symptoms, but if you have any concerns about your eyes following LASIK surgery contact your eye surgeon.

What Should I Expect from a Glaucoma Exam?

If you have a family history and/or other risk factors for glaucoma, and if your eyes look bloodshot, consider scheduling a glaucoma exam. Your eye doctor may perform the following tests:

  • Tonometry – eye pressure test
  • Gonioscopy – to see how fluid is draining out of your eye
  • Vision field test – to examine the functioning of the optic nerve
  • Dilated pupil exam – to detect any damage to the optic nerve
  • Retinal photo or OCT – digital examination of the retina and optic nerve health

Are Myopic Parents More Likely to Have Myopic Children?

Myopic Parents 640×350If you have myopia (nearsightedness), can you pass nearsightedness on to your children? Yes, you can. Having myopic parents greatly increases a child’s risk of developing myopia.

Due to heredity and other risk factors, myopia is reaching epidemic proportions – with more than 50% of the population expected to be myopic by 2050. That’s worrying, as having moderate to severe myopia greatly increases the risk of developing sight-threatening eye diseases like glaucoma and macular degeneration later in life.

What Is Myopia?

If you have myopia, distant objects will appear blurred. This happens when your cornea or eye lens is oval-shaped and excessively curved. As a result, the light entering your eye focuses images in front of your retina instead of directly on it, causing blurred vision.

Can Myopia Be Inherited? What the Stats Say

The answer is yes, myopia can be passed on from parents to children. There are 40 genes that influence the eye’s development and shape, and these could be responsible for nearsightedness.

Children with one myopic parent are 1.5x more likely to develop the condition, and the risk is tripled if both parents have myopia. This makes getting a comprehensive eye exam a must for any child of nearsighted parents.

Other risk factors include spending less than two hours a day outdoors and engaging in “near work” activities like reading and spending time on an electronic device, such as a computer or cell phone. Fortunately, there are ways to manage, slow and sometimes halt myopia progression.

What’s Myopia Management?

Myopia management is a systematic approach to preventing the progression of myopia. It includes lifestyle changes and treatments that help keep your child’s myopia from progressing.

​​We use the latest technology to ensure your child’s vision remains stable and healthy for years to come.

Protect Your Child’s Vision With Myopia Management

Let us help your child diminish the risk of developing ocular disease and vision loss with our effective myopia management program. Schedule an appointment with Dr. Alicia Harrison at Laguna Beach Myopia Control Center in Laguna Beach. We’ll use the latest technology to ensure your child’s vision remains stable and healthy for years to come.

Our practice serves patients from Laguna Beach, Huntington Beach, Laguna Niguel, and San Clemente, California and surrounding communities.

Frequently Asked Questions with Dr. Alicia Harrison

Q: What are some ways I can reduce my child’s screen time?

  • A: It isn’t easy to change habits, but as a family, you can work together to reduce screen time. Try the following:- Set limits on total amount of screen time per day
    – Create routines around screen use–such as after homework and chores
    – Model healthy screen use for your child
    – Talk to your children about why it is important to limit screen time
    – Engage in physical activity and outdoor sports as a family

Q: When Does Myopia Typically Develop?

  • A: Myopia begins in children as young as 6 and tends to progress until roughly the age of 20. The more it progresses, and the higher the prescription, the greater your child’s risk of developing potentially sight-threatening eye conditions, such as cataracts, glaucoma, macular degeneration and retinal detachment later in life.

Book An Appointment
Call 949-528-8005

Martial Arts: Improve Your Reflexes With Sports Vision Training

Martial Arts Improve Your Reflexes With Sports Vision Training 640×350As a martial artist, you want to show your hard-earned skills at every match. While martial artists know the importance of being physically fit, many don’t realize that their visual skills also play a central role in their performance.

Your eyes’ ability to focus, react instantaneously to another’s moves, and see movement from the edge of your visual field are all critical skills to succeed in martial arts. That’s where sports vision training comes in. Regardless of your age or level of ability, sports vision training can boost your visual skills to help you up your game.

What is Sports Vision Training?

Sports vision training is a customized program designed to enhance the communication between your eyes, brain, and body. Athletes who receive sports vision training are able to process visual information faster and react more precisely to what they see on the mat, field or track.

Sports vision training employs a unique set of strategies and exercises that enhances eye-brain communication so the body can respond more quickly, effectively and accurately. Visual skills such as depth perception, hand-eye coordination, dynamic visual acuity and peripheral awareness are all [emphasized] during sports vision training.

Visual Skills for Martial Arts

Visual skills allow the brain to quickly process the images received by the eyes and then relay this information to the body. People who do judo, karate, kung fu, Muay Thai, Krav Maga, Jiu-Jitsu, Aikido among other forms of martial arts rely heavily on these and other visual skills to succeed:

Dynamic Visual Acuity

This is at times referred to as “vision in motion,” or the capacity to see, understand and respond quickly to moving objects. In martial arts, fighters need dynamic visual acuity to accurately follow their opponents’ sudden kicks, throws or punches.

Eye-Hand Coordination

There is a three-way information pathway between our limbs, eye and brain. Any miscommunication between these three can impact eye-hand coordination. If the information is not conveyed quickly and accurately enough, the body may not be able to react in time to fend off an opponent.

From parrying a punch in boxing to grappling in Jiu-Jitsu, hand-eye coordination is required for a wide range of maneuvers and situations. It’s also important for enhancing your general timing in offensive and defensive reactions.

Peripheral Awareness

Your ability to recognize what’s going on at the edge of your vision is known as peripheral awareness. A fighter with a well-developed peripheral field will be able to see everything at once and perceive the battle’s flow.

Combatants of all levels, amateur and professional, can benefit from improving their visual abilities. Giving martial artists the ability to develop their sports vision skills has been shown to help them perform at a higher level.

Contact us at Laguna Beach Sports Vision Center to schedule your appointment with one of our sports vision experts and discover how sports vision training can help you excel in martial arts.

Our practice serves patients from Laguna Beach, Huntington Beach, Laguna Niguel, and San Clemente, California and surrounding communities.
Book An Appointment
Call Us 949-528-8005

Does Your Child Have 20/20 Vision Yet Still Struggles In School?

teacher with kids needing vision therapyYour child aced their school’s vision screening test with 20/20 eyesight. That means perfect vision, right?

Actually, no. 20/20 simply means that your child can clearly see things that are 20 feet away. While that’s good news, clear eyesight doesn’t mean a student has strong visual skills.

There are 17 crucial visual skills that can impact your child’s success in school and on the sports field. Fortunately, most children are able to improve their visual skills with vision therapy.

What Are Visual Skills?

A healthy visual system relies not only on healthy vision, but on the eyes’ ability to move correctly, send the correct information to the brain, and the brain’s ability to interpret this information. If any one of these visual skills is sub-par, it can impact a child’s reading, writing and learning. This, in turn, can harm their motivation and self-confidence.

The visual skills needed to succeed in school (and life) include:

  • Eye movement – the ability to accurately control the eye’s movements
  • Eye teaming – the ability of both eyes to work together
  • Focusing – the ability to maintain clear vision at all distances
  • Peripheral vision – seeing objects at the sides of our vision
  • Saccades – the ability for vision to jump between focal points

When 20/20 Vision Doesn’t Measure Up

When a child scores 20/20 on a simple vision test, problems with visual skills often go unnoticed because basic screenings rarely assess beyond eyesight. It’s no wonder that 1 out of 4 schoolchildren has an undiagnosed vision problem! That’s a lot of children struggling unnecessarily, and well into adulthood.

Only a functional eye exam performed by an eye doctor can detect subpar visual skills.

Signs Your Child Has a Visual Problem

Schedule a functional eye exam if your child:

  • Has learning difficulties
  • Reads below grade level
  • Exhibits behavioral problems
  • Has difficulty paying attention
  • Frequently rubs their eyes or blinks frequently
  • Squints or covers one eye when reading
  • Has poor hand-eye coordination

How Do You Improve Visual Skills in Children?

If your child is diagnosed with any visual skills deficits, their eye doctor may recommend vision therapy. This form of therapy involves the use of specialized eye exercises, prisms, therapeutic lenses and even fun computer-based games that recalibrate how the brain and eyes work together. Vision therapy involves a customized program to meet the individual needs of each child. The therapy is performed in-office and at home between office sessions.

Vision therapy is ideal for kids because their brains are still developing and have greater neuroplasticity (meaning, their brains are more adaptable to change through the strengthening of neural connections).

While the vision therapy program can range from a few weeks to several months, the results last a lifetime.

If your child is struggling to keep up in school or when playing sports, don’t delay and schedule an appointment with Dr. Alicia Harrison at Laguna Eyes Vision Therapy Center.

Our practice serves patients from Laguna Beach, Huntington Beach, Laguna Niguel, and San Clemente, California and surrounding communities.

Frequently Asked Questions with Dr. Alicia Harrison

Q: What is the success rate of vision therapy?

  • A: Vision therapy is a proven method to boost deficient visual skills and treat the visual system. In a multi-center National Eye Institute-funded study, 75% of patients with convergence insufficiency (problems with eye teaming), experienced normal vision or significantly improved symptoms following office-based vision therapy.

Q: Can vision therapy treat strabismus?

  • A: Yes. Vision therapy is the most effective and non-invasive treatment for strabismus— when the eyes don’t fixate or focus on the same place or visual target simultaneously. Eye exercises that train the brain and the eyes to work together can correct the eye turn and may even result in vision improvements, such as 3D vision and binocular depth perception.

References

Book An Appointment
Call 949-528-8005

Can Your Vision Change After a Concussion?

women rubbing her head from neuro vision problemsIf you’ve hit your head in a fall while playing sports or in any other type of accident, your vision may have been impacted.

Between 69% and 82% of people who’ve experienced concussions report visual problems, such as eyestrain and double or blurred vision.

Head trauma causes the brain to move within the skull. The movement can stretch the fragile cranial nerves and can even damage brain cells. Since vision relies on efficient communication between the eyes and the brain, a concussion can disrupt these neural pathways, affecting your vision.

The resulting condition is called post-trauma vision syndrome (PTVS).

How Does a Concussion Affect Vision?

Our vision depends on our brain’s ability to accurately receive and interpret the images sent by our eyes. Therefore, anything that impacts the brain can severely affect our ability to see clearly. When we suffer head injuries caused by a traffic accident or a serious fall, the resulting head injury can impact the communication between our eyes and brain.

Although your eyes may be healthy, your vision may be blurred, or you might start seeing double or experience eye strain due to post-trauma vision syndrome.

What Is Post Trauma Vision Syndrome?

Post-trauma vision syndrome refers to a number of visual problems that tend to occur following a severe head injury. If you have PTVS, you may have trouble with:

  • Focusing – changing focus from close to far or keeping your vision clear
  • Eye teaming or binocular vision – your eyes’ ability to coordinate
  • Depth perception – judging distance or the relationship of one object to another
  • Eye-tracking – visually following an object or text on a screen or page
  • Peripheral vision – seeing things from the side of the eyes
  • Eye alignment – the eyes aren’t aligned correctly or point in different directions

Any one of these visual problems can negatively affect your ability to perform day-to-day tasks and significantly lower your quality of life. Driving, reading, watching TV, participating in sports, enjoying hobbies and even socializing can become difficult.

Why You Need a Neuro-Optometrist

A neuro-optometrist is trained to diagnose and treat visual problems related to the nervous system caused by head injuries, strokes and neurological diseases. After assessing your visual system for any aberrations, your neuro-optometrist will prescribe a customized treatment plan to strengthen your visual system and improve your quality of life.

What Treatments Improve Vision Following a Concussion?

A neuro-optometrist may prescribe any of the following to relieve symptoms after a concussion and help you see and feel better:

  • Prescription lenses – especially for blurry vision
  • Prism lenses
  • Syntonic phototherapy – the use of light to create balance in the autonomous nervous system and restore vision
  • Neuro-optometric therapy – a customized eye exercise program designed to rehabilitate your visual skills

How Long Do Visual Problems Last After a Concussion?

Typically, visual problems caused by a concussion don’t become noticeable for some time. Symptoms of visual problems can appear or remain for weeks, months or even years after the original incident. Any person who has had a concussion should be assessed by a neuro-optometrist, even if they’re not experiencing any obvious visual problems.

If you’re still experiencing any visual symptoms of post-traumatic vision syndrome, even weeks or months after your head injury, it’s essential to see a neuro-optometrist for diagnosis and treatment. If this is your case, we invite you to schedule your appointment with Dr. Alicia Harrison at today.

Our practice serves patients from Laguna Beach, Huntington Beach, Laguna Niguel, and San Clemente, California and surrounding communities.

Frequently Asked Questions with Dr. Alicia Harrison

Q: Can a concussion permanently change your vision?

  • A: In some cases, a concussion can permanently impact your vision, especially if your visual system or optic nerve has been damaged. The good news is that most visual problems caused by a head injury respond well to neuro-optometric rehabilitation therapy.

Q: Why can it take time for concussion-related vision problems to be diagnosed?

  • A: Diagnosis can depend on several factors. If someone has been in a serious accident, their physicians are focused on life-threatening injuries. As a result, all but the most obvious visual symptoms, such as vision loss, may be missed. In other cases, the signs of PTVS can be very subtle and undetectable in a routine eye exam. That’s why anyone who has experienced a concussion should have their vision thoroughly examined by a neuro-optometrist.

    Book An Appointment
    Call Us 949-528-8005