Eye Strain - Big Eye Ball at Computer Desk

Eye Strain

Eye strain is a fairly common eye condition that can be painful and debilitating. It can lessen productivity and can negatively affect daily activities. In this article, you will learn about the basic things about eye strain, including the type of people who are at risk, the causes, symptoms, and ways to deal with the problem.

What is Eye Strain?

As the name suggests, this condition simply refers to the straining of the muscles of the eyes. The eyes are made up of six muscles and a ciliary body around the eyes. When at least one of these muscles become strained due to over fatigue, a form of eye strain may occur.

Who are at Risk?

Anyone can experience eye strain, regardless of their age, social status, or gender. However, those who are at greater risk are those who tend to overuse their eyes. Some examples are:

Frequent Computer Users or Television Viewers

Prolonged staring at computer screens or any other type of screen can easily cause eye strain. The main reason is that working, watching, or playing on these light emitting sources involves tremendous eye concentration that may tire the eyes. With this, gamers and office workers who spend most of their time in front of the computer, as well as frequent television viewers  are more likely to experience the symptoms of eye strain.

People who read frequently.

Reading is another activity that can easily make the eyes tired. So intensive readers such as writers, journalists, students, teachers, editors, and librarians are at high risk for eye strain.

People whose jobs involve working on small details.

Some examples of jobs which require too much eye concentration on small details include model makers, tailors,seamstress, or even needlework enthusiasts. Focusing your eyes intensely on a particular spot or small detail for an extended period of time can easily cause eye fatigue and eye strain.

What are the Symptoms of Eye Strain?

It is fairly easy to recognize the symptoms of eye strain. Listed below are some of the most common ones:

  • Headaches
  • Lightheadedness
  • Blurred vision
  • Watery eyes
  • Eye spasms or twitches
  • Dry eyes
  • Heavy eyelids
  • Neck aches
  • Eyes that are sore or feeling tired
  • Nausea
  • Dizziness
  • Itchy eyes
  • Double vision
  • Heavy feeling on the forehead
  • Inability to concentrate
  • Fatigue
  • Problems when reading

What  are the Possible Causes of Eye Strain?

Below are the activities and conditions that commonly cause eye strain:

  • Prolonged computer use
  • Driving
  • Intensive reading
  • Pitching in baseball or softball
  • Extended watching of television
  • Working in low light conditions
  • Too much brightness
  • Stress
  • Contrast levels of the screen are too low
  • Fluorescent lighting
  • Glare
  • Fatigue
  • Bad viewing angle
  • Alcohol use
  • Improper posture
  • Uncorrected vision
  • Drug use
  • Tiredness

How to Deal with Eye Strain?

If you experience eye strain occasionally, you do not really need to consult with an eye doctor. You can easily alleviate the negative symptoms and discomfort by doing the following:

Relaxing and soothing your eyes

The easiest way to get relief from eye strain is by resting your tired eyes and soothing them. If you really need to finish something on the computer, a 15-minute rest for every two hours of computer use may be sufficient. When you feel that your eyes are already tired, close them for a while or take a nap. Moreover, you can also put tea bags or a slice of cucumber on each eye to soothe them.

Doing eye exercises

There are two types of exercises for the eye muscles, namely strengthening and relaxation. They are of equal importance and are both essential for maintaining eye health and improving eye performance. These exercises can easily be found on the internet.

If you experience eye strains regularly and feel severe pain, it is recommended to consult with your ophthalmologist immediately. Doing so will enable you to know the underlying cause of the regular eye strain and you will also be provided with effective solutions.

Blue Eye Hydration

Eye Hydration

Do you experience consistent itchiness, irritation, and burning sensation in your eyes? If yes, you are probably suffering from dry eyes. Some of the most common causes of dry eyes include prolonged wearing of contact lenses and insufficient production of tears.

If you want to hydrate your eyes and prevent irritation, you might want to try doing the following:

  1. Apply artificial tears in your eyes.

    Using artificial tear eye drops is the most efficient way to deal with dry eyes, especially if your eyes do not produce sufficient amount of tears naturally. This type of eye drops can greatly alleviate the discomfort, and some can even be bought over the counter. One thing to remember is that these artificial tear eye drops are not the same as those which are used for red eyes.

  2. Use lubrication while sleeping.

    It is advisable to apply eye lubrication before you sleep, if your eyes get dry while sleeping. In order to know the kind of mineral oil lubricant that is most suitable for your condition, consult with your ophthalmologist.

  3. Blink your eyes frequently.

    The most natural way to make your eyes produce more tears is by blinking. When you are working in front of the computer or focusing on something, you are actually blinking less frequent. So if you want to avoid having dry eyes, blink frequently and take short breaks from your work to rest your eyes.

  4. Keep Your Body Hydrated

    Increasing your fluid intake is also an effective way to make your eyes produce more tears.

  5. Use a humidifier or air cleaner in your home.

    Sometimes, the presence of dust or pollen and the lack of air moisture cause dry eyes. With this, using an air cleaner and humidifier in your house may be helpful in reducing the adverse symptoms.

  6. Hydrate your contact lenses.

    Make sure that you maintain your contact lenses and keep them well-hydrated. Additionally, you should never forget to remove your contact lenses before you go to sleep and clean them with the recommended saline solution. You might also want to replace your existing contact lenses with the breathable type in order to solve dry eye problems.

  7. Maintain a healthy diet.

    Eating the right kinds of food can alleviate the symptoms of dry eyes and any other medical condition. Foods that are rich in Omega-3, and vitamin A, E, and C are particularly helpful in maintaining well-lubricated and healthy eyes.

  8. Remove the blockage in your tear ducts.

    In some cases, dry eyes are caused by blocked tear ducts. So try to unblock them in order for your natural hydration system to work properly again.

  9. Get sufficient amounts of sleep.

    Getting enough sleep will enable your eyes to rest and replenish the moisture they need.

Doing the things listed in this article can help ease the discomfort that you are experiencing. Aside from making you feel more comfortable, keeping your eyes lubricated can also prevent other problems such as eye strain. Remember that if you have severe dry eyes and the mentioned ways do not seem to work, it is best to consult with a physician as soon as possible.

Swimming dry eyes

Dry Eyes in the Water

Dry Eyes in the Water: Swimming is an effective way to keep in shape. During the summer it is a fun way to keep cool. But if you’re in the water a lot, whether in a local pool, nearby lake or  salt water beach, you might notice that your eyes occasionally become itchy or feel gritty.

These uncomfortable sensations affect swimmers and surfers. They are signs of chemical conjunctivitis, better known as Pink Eye, and Swimmer’s and Surfer’s Dry Eye. In both conditions, the problem is usually temporary and easy to treat. If the condition lasts, professional help is advised.

Pink Eye

Chemical conjunctivitis is called Pink Eye because of the reddening effects of inflammation on the white of the eye. The chlorine used in  pools is the most common cause among swimmers, but air pollution and other chemicals in the environment also contribute.

The eye has a very thin layer of tissue that covers the white of the eye with a transparent film. Chemicals irritate this delicate membrane, causing inflammation in one or both eyes. Common symptoms include:

  • watery eyes
  • itchy feeling
  • gritty feeling
  • burning sensation
  • swollen eyelids
  • discharge
  • redness
  • sensitivity to light
  • blurred vision

In most cases the condition is easy to fix by pouring warm tap water or a saline solution over the surface of the eye.  This helps flush away the chemicals causing the inflammation. Eye drops such as Crocodile Tears work well to stop the itching and burning. Cold compresses can help relieve irritation.

If you use contacts, don’t wear them until the inflammation, redness, and itchy, burning feeling are gone.

If these home remedies don’t solve the problem, the next step is a check up at the eye doctor, either an optometrist or ophthalmologist. This is especially important if a thick discharge is seeping out or if you have cloudy vision for more than a few hours.

Prevention is always the best approach, but it can be hard in public pools. The proper pH balance is easy to fix in a pool in your own yard but beyond your authority at the community pool. That’s why using swimming goggles is essential to keep your eyes out of direct contact with chlorine and other chemicals.

Swimmer’s and Surfer’s Eye

This condition is very similar to Pink Eye. It is caused by changes in the tear film, made up principally of water, which protects the eye.  When its water content evaporates too fast, it creates an excess of salt. The result is discomfort and blurry vision. If it happens too often, the effects can become chronic.

What causes the over-evaporation is contact with chlorine in pools, the salt in the ocean and UV rays from the sun. The three main ways to prevent the problem are:

  • drink 8 to 10 glasses of water on days you swim or surf
  • use eye protection both in and out of the water
  • make sure your tear film is well hydrated before and after a dip in the water

If you get Swimmer’s or Surfer’s Eye, you can use Crocodile Tears to add moisture to the eye and tear film.

 

 

 

 

 

Helping Lasik-induced Dry Eyes

Dry eyes following Lasik surgery can be an annoyance for many, however this is a growing into a bigger issue for many Americans. Some people must endure hours of complicated daily regimes just to care for their eyes. There are others who experience so much pain from their dry eyes that they have to sit for hours with their eyes closed just to experience relief.

Are There Treatments Available?

Treatments typically consists of use of drops, mists, eye compresses, ointments, duct plugs, nutritional supplements, and moisture retention glasses. Due to the amount of people suffering worldwide from dry eye symptoms, they spend upwards of $522 million on an annual basis on products for their dry eye symptoms. This is an increasing problem, experts agree.

Even though this is a widespread problem, many Lasik surgeons are not referring to “dry eye syndrome” as a complication related to Lasik surgery. Surgeons are well aware of the complaints of dry-eye in nearly half the patients and that it could be a permanent issue alongside other issues like night vision problems, but it viewed as a common problem and not a complication.

What Typically Causes Dry Eyes?

Due to issues such issues as age, environmental pollution, air conditioning, side effects from certain prescription medications, Lasik eye surgery, and how many hours a person spends in front a computer, all of these factors contribute to dry eye. As you can see, there are a number of other factors contributing to dry eye in addition to Lasik eye surgery.

This begs the questions, though, how do patients of Lasik surgery, specifically find relief when there are so many other issues that already cause dry eye symptoms? An individual would have to think about how they are living, what their habits were prior to their surgery, and if dry eye was persistent prior to their surgery before seeking treatment. If they were receiving dry-eye treatments prior to their Lasik eye surgery, this information is important to discuss with their surgeon or their primary care physician at the time of their consultation. While over the counter medications may provide short-term relief, severe dry eye symptoms may require a prescription remedy.

How Widespread is This Problem?

Following the procedure, and expected 50% of patients will experience dry eye symptoms. These symptoms can last from two weeks to one year following the procedure. However, some patients have symptoms that have lasted longer than one year. There are FDA warnings stating that dry eye syndrome could be permanent in some patients.

It is suggested that those who have undergone Lasik eye surgery and are experiencing dry eye symptoms should file a MedWatch report with the FDA. This form can be downloaded and faxed directly to the FDA, or mailed in. Or, patients can call in for more information. This is a voluntary reporting system allowing for information to be passed along to the FDA about your issues with Lasik surgery, as well as the resulting dry eye symptoms.

GoogleGlass.png

Google Glass and Your Eyes

Can you imagine seeing information in real time, displayed seemingly in the air in front of your eyes? Google Glasses will make you feel as if you’ve stepped right out a sci fi movie. Upon release of this product, consumers named Google Glass one of the company’s best inventions to date.  What makes Google Glass so unique?

What is Google Glass?

Google Glass is a pair of glasses with a tiny computer implanted into them. They’re lightweight, yet they have a strong frame. Bluetooth, wi-fi, speakers, microphone and a touchpad are all included in the frames.  The small screen attached the screen allows user to view videos, read web pages and view photos.

How does Google Glass Work

Google Glass is operated via voice command and through a touchpad where you can just tap your finger and swipe to view the menu and other apps. You can capture both videos and photos without using your hands.  Google Glass works along with your smartphone. There are more than seventy applications available for Google Glass that are downloaded via your phone.

When paired with your phone you can receive news feeds, social media notifications, text messages and phone calls through Google Glass.

Fashion Meets Technology

For a device that’s capable of doing so much, you would think Google Glass would be a clunky device. Google Glass is sleek and looks very similar to your average pair of glasses. It’s available in various color and frame designs.

Google has created four super light titanium frames that are designed to fit users prescription. They’re  made in cool colors. To safely install prescription frames into the device, Google encourages consumers to have this service completed by one of their preferred providers.

How Does Google Glass Affect Your Eyes?

Although, Google Glass has its benefits, prolonged use can cause harm to your eyes. When worn for hours at one time, Google warns that it could also cause headaches. Headaches are caused by constant eye straining.

Dr. James Salz spokesperson for the American Academy of Ophthalmology compared the experience of viewing content on Google Glass to reading small print and that constant  use could lead to eye dryness.  Experts  reveal that when wearing Google Glass for the first time, an adjustment period is needed just like with regular prescription eyewear.

Google Glass causes minor eye complications due to the fact that the display screen is placed right in the user’s field of vision, the see-through augmented reality digital information that’s displayed also takes some getting used to.

Recently, Google banned the use of Google Glass for children under thirteen years old. Patients who have undergone Lasik eye surgery are advised to check with their eye doctors to find out if Google Glass is right for them.

Yes, while Google Glass causes mild eye irritation, it poses no serious threat or harm to user’s eye health. To combat eye dryness and irritation users are encouraged to apply quality eye drops such as Crocodile Tears which are great at lubricating, protecting and moisturizing dry eyes.

Eye Treatment Before Bedtime

If you suffer from dry eyes at night and especially when you wake up in the morning, it may be due a number of things. The air and moisture in your room, your sleeping environment, and certain medical conditions can all make an impact on the quality and moisture of your eyes. Since you don’t produce tear drops in the same way while you sleep, it is important to take really good care of your eyes at night in order to avoid excessive dryness. Here are some tips for proper eye treatment before bedtime.

Use a Humidifier

If you are experiencing a lot of dryness of your eyes at night, it might be due to the humidity level in your bedroom being too low. Try installing a humidifier in your bedroom to help with the different symptoms of dry and itchy eyes at night. A humidifier will not only keep the humidity level at a reasonable volume, but it provides a cool mist in the room, providing just the right amount of cool moisture for your eyes.

Apply Heat Packs

Heat packs are not just for sore and tired muscles, they can also be used to help with lubrication of the eys. Get small and soft-sided heat packs and apply them to your eyes just before bed. The heat in these packs will stimulate the glands in your eyes, allowing proper lubrication after releasing natural oils. This is going to help improve moisture of your eyes and reduce dryness.

Eye Drops

You have two main options for eye drops: doctor prescribed and over-the-counter. OTC eye drops work very well to lubricate your eyes and can be used at night before bed to introduce moisture. You can also use them in the middle of the night if you wake with dry, itchy eyes, but usually once just before bedtime is enough. If they are not sufficient or the ones sold at your local drug store cause too much irritation, you can ask your doctor to prescribe a different brand of them.

Protect Your Eyes

Protecting your eyes from the air and other environments can also provide better moisture and reduce dryness when you sleep. Much of the instances of dry eyes at night occur because of the air in the room, and lack of blinking to produce lubrication. If this is the case, try wearing a sleep mask at night. This will protect your eye from the air in the room, and hold in some of the moisture your eyes naturally produce.

Turn Off All Air Sources

Anything that is affecting the air quality in your bedroom, aside from the humidifier, is going to cause dryness of the eyes. This includes ceiling fans and standing fans, air conditioners, and heaters. These all affect your environment and while they might keep you physically more comfortable, they can be harsh on your eyes.

Not everyone needs to worry about excessive dryness of the eyes, but if you are waking with itchy or burning eyes, it is time tos tart thinking about proper nighttime eye care.

Buy Natural Tears

Preparing Your Eyes For Winter

The winter months are the best time of year for your eyes, correct? When the sun’s rays are less powerful it isn’t likely that people will experience a lot of vision problems. Who needs eye protection in the winter? UV rays, sun glare, all of that is gone. Right? Hey, the overcast skies and loads of snow mean it’s time to forget all about eye safety and relax.

Not so fast. The winter months do have some changes that reduce eye damage in some ways. The flip side is that there’s increased risk from other things. Let’s take a look at how you can prepare your eyes for winter and keep them healthy. There’s no reason to suffer from damage to the eyes with some simple strategies to avoid any lasting damage or vision loss during the winter months.

Sun Damage

It is true that in some areas the rays from the sun are less powerful in the winter. This only means that it isn’t quite as hot. UV rays can still harm your eyes. Not everyone is aware that UV rays can be even more damaging in the winter due to the reflection of sun rays off of snow and ice. Don’t put away summer sunglasses – keep them out all year to avoid a case of sunburn on the eye (photokeratitis). The best sunglasses will block out all UVA and UVB rays. Both rays can cause damage to the eyes all year long.

Cold Damage

We don’t usually think of our eyes suffering damage from the cold. Did you know that in very cold temperatures your eyes can freeze? Keeping your eyes protected from extreme cold can avoid this, but if you simply can’t avoid being outdoors in severe cold, keep your eyes protected from wind, cold water, and invest in goggles. The act of wearing goggles can seal in enough warmth to avoid freezing of the cornea which can result in vision loss.

Even if the eye doesn’t freeze, cold can cause blurring and cloudy vision when blood vessels constrict.

Pain and More

Pain and inflammation are likely to be encountered when you’ve suffered from a corneal freeze, constriction of the blood vessels in the eye. A sign of inflammation is hen the eyes eel gritty, are swollen, red, or are painful. It is important to wear goggles or glasses to protect the eyes from wind and cold. Pain and inflammation are the least severe of the problems caused by cold, but are the first warning symptom of a more serious problem.

Treatments

Sometimes the treatment is as easy as getting to a warm place. If you can’t get inside, then sit in a vehicle with the heat on, build a fire, or just cover the eyes with your hands. Warm breath inside o a scarf that covers the entire face can help. Sunburn or freezing needs the treatment from an eyecare professional and is easier to avoid that to treat. Goggles and sunglasses are the best way to avoid damage from the sun during the winter.

Eyes and Sun Damage

You use sunscreen on your skin to avoid damage from the sun, but do you protect your eyes from injury that can come from ultraviolet (UV) rays? Sunglasses are one way to do this. Not all sunglasses are created equal and using the proper protection for your eyes can mean the difference between a lifetime of healthy eyes or serious eye damage and disease.

We are familiar with how our body repairs itself when an injury occurs. Eye lens do not repair like the rest of the body, though. If the lens is damaged then it remains that way. This could result in vision loss or disease.

Sun Damage Contributes to Some Conditions

No matter the season, eyes are susceptible to damage from blue light and UV rays. Your eyes are still able to become seriously damaged by the sun’s rays in the winter if you do not protect them. In the summer the rays are three times stronger and even on cloudy or overcast days your eyes can suffer sun damage.

Some of the following conditions may be caused by sun damage or aggravated by not using protection:

  • Age-related macular degeneration
  • Cataracts
  • Photokeratitis
  • Pterygia
  • Skin cancer around the eyes

What Are the Risk Factors?

All people have a risk of damage to the eyes when they have been exposed to the sun for a prolonged period of time. There are some groups of people that have a higher risk. Children that are under age ten can suffer from serious damage to the retina when exposed to the sun for too long. Children, especially those under ten, should have eye protection when outdoors.

There are more groups that are at a higher risk for sun damage:

  • Cataracts surgery patients
  • People with light eyes
  • People on medications that cause sun sensitivity
  • People with disorders of the retina
  • Protecting the Eyes

Every time you are out in the sun your need to protect your eyes. The more time you spend with your eyes exposed to sunlight, the more possibility there is of permanent eye damage. This is because damage to the eyes from the sun is cumulative over the course of your life. Remember – the lens o the eye cannot repair itself.

Between the hours of 10 AM and 4 PM the sun’s rays are the strongest. During this time it is important to either protect the eyes or to avoid the sun altogether. Wearing sunglasses is the best way to protect the eyes, though all sunglasses are not created equal in their protective qualities.

The sunglasses that provide the best protection for your eyes are…

  • Large enough to cover the entire eye and fit close to the eye
  • Able to block 99-100% of UVA & UVB rays
  • Able to block blue light

An eye doctor can help you choose the right sunglasses for you. Not only can he or she help you pick out the best eye protection, they may be able to determine how much damage may already be present. Don’t wait until it’s too late to begin caring for your eyes.

Try Crocodile tears to soothe your eyes.

Clear up the confusion about eye drops

So, your eye doctor has suggested that you use artificial tears to treat your dry eye condition. You have been to the drug store, and noticed the overwhelming types of artificial tears in the shelves. Which one should you try? Is there any difference between these drugs? Here is a useful classification list of these drugs.

Artificial tears which coat your eyes

Some artificial tears contain ingredients, which promote healing on the eye’s surface cells. They contain HP-guar, which improves the moisture content of cells that might be prone to damage due to dryness. Hp-guar also, forms a gel layer, which protects the already damaged cells.

Artificial tears and Hydrogels

These are artificial tears that contain hydrogels, or elements that work to boost the moisture in your eyes. The more this type of artificial tears contains hydrogel, the more effective it is.

Artificial tears which stabilize natural oils

Some artificial tears help stabilize the tear’s film, oily part. If the oily part is disrupted or interrupted, your natural tears will definitely evaporate much faster, leaving your eyes feeling gritty and dry. These artificial tears therefore, contain oily ingredients such as mineral oil and castor oil that boosts the required balance.

Artificial tears with preservatives

Some artificial tears have preservatives while other don’t. The preservatives discourage the growth of bacteria when applied to the eyes. If you have severe dry eyes, it is advisable to consult a medical practitioner to prescribe a more convenient drug for you, if this does not work appropriately.

Artificial tears which last longer

A few brands of these tears attempt to maximize contact time with the eye by being more viscous. They may contain some chemicals that are hard for the lubrication effect to disappear quickly.  Although the thickness of these tears sometimes, causes temporary hazy vision, it is an effect that dry eye patients are more than willing to put up with.

With all these types, it is important you discuss with an expert/pharmacist the ideal artificial tears for your eyes. Most certainly, they may prescribe a drug like Crocodile Tears, a type of eye artificial tears, which is safe to use and moisturizes your eyes just like your natural tears.

Try Crocodile tears to soothe your eyes.