Eye Exams 101

In the world of health priorities, our eyes seem to be on the lower end of that spectrum. We focus mostly on our bodies, then our teeth, but making sure our eyes are as healthy as the rest of our body usually comes out as nothing more than a “I’ll keep an eye on it” (no pun intended). Some people put off a dentist appointment or doctor checkup so long that they have a subpar understanding of what exactly such an event entails. For eye appointments a lot of people only recall the machine that shoots a puff of air at your eye, but the entire process is good to understand before making that long overdue appointment.

Why are eye exams done?

The reasoning for eye exams may be obvious: they are used to check the overall health of your eyes. But, the goal of an eye exam is to pinpoint and discover any issues your eyes may be developing at the earliest stage possible. The earlier an issue arises, the better the chance of treatment. It’s when somebody puts off an eye appointment for years that any issue that may be present most likely has advanced to stage an untreatable stage. Having regular eye exams prevents any issue from metastasizing too late.

When should I be making appointments?

The relative age of the patient is a key deciding factor for making regular eye appointments. For example, newborns and toddlers will usually have their pediatrician look for the most common eye issues during regular checkups. Only when something is found is a proper eye exam conducted, even at that age. For children a little older it is important to have the eyes checked prior to starting elementary school, after which you can expect checkups every one to two years. For adults, the frequency depends on your age range.

What should I do before, during, and after?

The steps to take when going through an eye exam may seem dauting but the reality is much simpler. For first timers, understanding your eye health history is beneficial to both you and the doctor conducting the exam (not unlike an appointment with a general practitioner). Keep a tally of any health issues you’ve had in the past that may or may not be affecting eye health. You can also take this time to talk to the doctor about LASIK if you know your vision could already be better.

The exam itself is generally short and simple, with machines being used to test visual acuity and sensitivity. When you think of the phrase “better, worse, or the same?”, this is when you’d be asked that question. Also, yes, this is when you’d have the puff of air shot into your eye, so mentally prepare for that.

After the exam you’ll typically get the results of your exam and any issues that may have been found, if any. If issues are found (for example: cataracts), preventative measures and possible surgery can be discussed, and if your vision isn’t as great as you’ve boasted for years, you can try on glasses and find a frame that best fits your style with your new prescription.

That’s it! Not as daunting as it may sound, but it really is something one should keep up with, especially if you want a glasses prescription that is up to date.

Rohr Eye & Laser Center offers the most advanced technology available to suit your lifestyle and visual needs.  As a leader in laser vision correction and cataract surgery, our goal is to help you achieve the best vision possible without glasses or contact lenses.  More information can be found online at https://michiganlasik.com.

Being a Candidate For LASIK

LASIK is a type of refractive eye surgery that eliminates dependency on corrective lenses.  It is, however, not the right decision for everyone.  It is important to determine if you are a good candidate for LASIK and that you weigh the decision to have the procedure before scheduling your surgery.  Are you tired of wearing glasses and contacts?  Read on to see if you are a candidate for laser vision correction surgery.

Most LASIK patients will achieve 20/25 vision or better after LASIK eye surgery.  This is appropriate vision for most activities; eventually however, some LASIK candidates will need glasses for reading or driving at night. 

The track record for LASIK surgery is good.  There are a few rare complications that result in vision loss.  In fact, most people are satisfied with the results of their procedure.  Common side effects of the surgery are dry eye and temporal visual disturbance but often clear up in a few weeks or a month.  They are rarely long-term and don’t require additional intervention.  Of course, the final results will depend on your refractive error. Candidates with mild nearsightedness have better success overall with refractive surgery while candidates with a high degree of nearsightedness or farsightedness with astigmatism have less predictable results overall. 

There are multiple differences in laser refractive surgery although LASIK is the generic term used for all of them.  Images are focused on the retina in the back of your eye.  When your vision is not perfect the images focus elsewhere and result in blurred vision. 

Nearsightedness results in objects far away to appear blurry whereas nearby objects are clearer.  The eyeball is normally longer or the cornea curves sharply which doesn’t allow the light rays to focus at the front of the retina and then blur distant objects.  Farsightedness on the other hand is where close objects are blurry but objects in the distance can be seen clearly.  This occurs because the eyeball is short or the cornea is flat, light then focuses behind the retina.  Astigmatisms cause overall blurry vision, the cornea curves or flattens unevenly.

Traditional methods of blurry vision are corrected by the bending of light rays with contacts or glasses.  Reshaping the cornea during LASIK provides the necessary refraction for vision correction.  Before surgery the surgeon will take detailed measurements of your eye.  They will then use a specialized cutting laser to alter the curve of the cornea.  The pulse of the laser beam removes a tiny bit of corneal tissue which allows your eye surgeon to flatten or steepen the curve of the cornea.  The surgeon will create a flap in the cornea and then raise it up before the cornea is reshaped. 

Rohr Eye & Laser Center offers the most advanced technology available to suit your lifestyle and visual needs.  As a leader in laser vision correction and cataract surgery, our goal is to help you achieve the best vision possible without glasses or contact lenses.  More information can be found online at https://michiganlasik.com.

Preparing for Cataract Surgery

Have you noticed that your vision has started to get a bit cloudy?  As you notice this occurrence it is important to speak with your eye doctor as you may be developing a cataract in your eye.  When you are diagnosed with a cataract your eye doctor will often recommend surgery to remove the lens of the eye and replace it with an artificial one. Cataract removal is common, safe, and after it is done you will be able to see clearer. 

Who Should Have Cataract Surgery?

If you have a cataract, it doesn’t always mean you will have to have surgery, some people don’t even notice a change in their vision.  Some people will continue to see clearly.  As a cataract grows your symptoms will change.  Your vision could become yellow, dim, or blurred.  Double vision is another common side effect when you are looking at things through a cataract. It can be difficult to read, work on a computer, or do common everyday activities that require clear vision.  Poor night vision is another side effect of cataracts. 

Preparing for Cataract Surgery

About a week or two before your cataract surgery your doctor will start measuring the size and shape of your eyes.  This allows them to choose an artificial lens that is the most appropriate size for you lens.  You will be unable to eat or drink for at least twelve hours before your surgery.  You should also know that you will be awake during the procedure.  It is not a painful surgery, but you may need some medicine to relax especially if you have surgical anxiety.  The surgery will take less than an hour in most situations.  A laser is used to break up the cataract into bits that can be gently suctioned out.  The new lens will then be put into place.  You will not need to spend the night, but you will need someone there to drive you home.  If cataracts are present in both eyes, surgery will typically be scheduled a few weeks apart.

Side Effects of Cataract Surgery

Although rare there are some typical side effects from cataract surgery including:

  • Infection and Swelling
  • Bleeding
  • Detachment of the Retina
  • A Feeling of Pressure in Your Eye
  • Loosening of the Implant
  • Fluid Buildup
  • Eyelid Drooping

After surgery your eye may itch or be a bit sore.  Bright light may be extreme, and some tearing may occur.  The doctor will give you eye drops to apply regularly.  Take it easy and try to relax for a few days after surgery.  Don’t drive, bend over, put pressure on the eye, or pick up heavy things.  While you sleep your eye should be shielded to protect it as it is healing.  Your eye should be fully healed after about 8 weeks. 

Rohr Eye & Laser Center offers the most advanced technology available to suit your lifestyle and visual needs.  As a leader in laser vision correction and cataract surgery, our goal is to help you achieve the best vision possible without glasses or contact lenses.  More information can be found online at https://michiganlasik.com.

2019 Facts About LASIK and LASEK

Laser vision correction is more widely accessible today than ever before.  Eyeglasses and contacts can be a thing of the past with just a few clicks, a consultation, and simple surgery.  Vision correction with a laser is the most common surgery in the United States.  Roughly over 600,000 laser eye procedures are done every year.  Not only is it the most common surgical procedure, it is the most successful as well.  Laser vision correction is performed in an attempt to cure Myopia, Hyperopia, and Astigmatism. 

There are two main types of laser vision correction which include LASIK and LASEK (PRK).  One is not better than the other.   The right treatment to correct your vision will depend on your diagnosis, age, and lifestyle.  In general, the differences include:

LASIK – This is a type of refractive surgery that is used to correct myopia, hyperopia, and astigmatism.  A microscopic protective flap is created to allow access to the inner cornea.  After this is done a laser light is used to reshape the cornea surface gently which alters focusing power and will improve your vision.  The protective flap is then positioned to protect the eye and help in the healing process.  Patients most often report an instant improvement in their vision after treatment.

LASEK (PRK) – This type of surgery is similar to LASIK however uses a different method to expose the cornea for treatment.  Instead of a flap like in LASIK, LASEK is done directly to the surface of the eye and then the laser is applied. To protect the eye and provide protection after surgery a bandage contact lens is put over the eye.  Vision improvements occur over time in a gradual process.  The bandage contact lens is taken off about a week after surgery. 

Both LASIK and LASEK are considered safe medical procedures.  There are risks however they have significantly lower complications then other procedures.  They have been proven to be safe procedures.  20+ million people since 1996 have had some type of laser vision treatment to correct vision impairments.  As with all medical procedures as technology advances the risks involved lessen.  Technological advancements make laser vision safer, less invasive, and quicker recovery times.

Many laser vision correction candidates want to know about the likelihood they will go blind after LASIK and LASEK.  Although there are risks involved, there has never been a case where LASIK was the primary cause of blindness to a patient.  That is not to say it can’t happen however there is a likelihood of 1 in 5 million that LASIK would be a primary cause of blindness.  If you think about it in other terms there is a 1 in 1.2 million chance of becoming a movie star, 1 in 3.75 million chance of being bit by a shark, and 1 in 12,000 of lightning striking you.

Common side effects of laser vision surgery include:

  • Dry Eyes
  • Glare
  • Halos
  • Starbursts
  • Ghosting

Most of the side effects experienced will disappear as healing occurs.  It is important to take care of yourself during the healing process in order to experience the best outcome.

As with anything, your odds of something going wrong decrease significantly when you choose a reputable facility such as Rohr Eye and Laser Center and top laser correction surgeons like Dr. Rohr When you are looking for a local laser vision correction facility it is critical to look for experience, technology, and reviews. 

Rohr Eye & Laser Center offers the most advanced technology available to suit your lifestyle and visual needs.  As a leader in laser vision correction and cataract surgery, our goal is to help you achieve the best vision possible without glasses or contact lenses.  More information can be found online at https://michiganlasik.com.

Common Myths about Cataracts

When it comes to taking care of your eyes as you age you will certainly receive a lot of information both accurate and inaccurate.  Wading through the information received can be daunting.  Cataracts are often a center of myths and tales associated with seniors and vision care.  We have centered this installment around breaking the myths that surround the formation and surgical procedures associated with cataracts. 

Cataracts are the leading cause of blindness throughout the world, more than glaucoma, diabetic retinopathy, and macular degeneration collectively. They are more common in seniors than any other demographic.  Estimates suggest fifty percent of Americans will have had cataracts by the time they are eighty years old.  It is important that seniors have correct information, an understanding of their vision condition, and what options they have for correction.

The Myths and Truths of Cataracts

Myth #1: Cataracts Grow on The Eye

Truth: Cataracts have thought to be a growth on the eye however that is not the truth at all.  Cataracts are a result of protein fibers that clump together and creating a clouding of the lens of the eye.  The cloud causes light to be scattered or even blocked completely as it passes through the lens.  This does not allow the retina to receive a clear image.  Cataracts are caused by:

  • Overexposure to Ultraviolet Light
  • Eye Injury
  • Result of Diabetes

Myth #2: The Only Symptom of Cataracts Is Blurred Vision

Truth: Although blurred vision is the most common symptom individuals report when experiencing cataracts, it is not the only one. Other symptoms include:

  • Extreme Light Sensitivity
  • Changes in Vision Prescription
  • Double Vision
  • Changes in Perception of Colors
  • Night Vision Difficulty

Myth #3: Cataracts Are Preventable

Truth: Cataracts are not preventable.  There are different strategies that can be taken to reduce the risk of developing cataracts or to slow the progression of the disease.  These include:

  • Yearly Eye Exams
  • Healthy Diet Rich in Fruits and Veggies
  • Don’t Smoke
  • Avoid Excessive Alcohol Usage
  • Wear Sunglasses with UVA & UVB Protection

Myth #4: Cataract Surgery is Dangerous

Truth: Cataract is in fact not dangerous, it is actually one of the safest vision surgeries.  With advancements in technology, individuals need minimal sedation and cataract surgery has a success rate of over ninety-five percent.  Recovery from cataract surgery includes:

  • Refrain from Eye Rubbing
  • No Lifting of Heavy Objects
  • Avoid Driving

Myth #5: Cataracts Come Back

Truth: Once a cataract is removed from the lens through surgical means, it will not return.  A “secondary” cataract may develop.  This occurs when the membrane holding the foreign lens implant in place becomes cloudy.  This is corrected with a simple, painless procedure called a YAG laser capsulotomy.  An eye surgeon will create a small opening in the membrane to assist in restoring the sharpness in vision.

Rohr Eye & Laser Center offers the most advanced technology available to suit your lifestyle and visual needs.  As a leader in laser vision correction and cataract surgery, our goal is to help you achieve the best vision possible without glasses or contact lenses.  More information can be found online at https://michiganlasik.com.

Warning Signs Of Cataracts

Cataracts are a clouding in the lens of an eye that causes the impairment of an individual’s vision.  This eye disease affects over twenty-five million Americans that are 40 and over.  Once individuals have reached 75, over half of them will be diagnosed with cataracts. 

As adults age the eye’s lens starts to yellow and harden which creates blurry vision, dull perception of colors, and night time driving becomes difficult.  Cataracts do not get better and in fact get worse overtime.  In fact, cataracts have several stages as they progress.  It is important to treat the symptoms of cataracts in order to slow or stop cataracts from getting worse.  In order to get a proper diagnosis and treatment plan it is crucial to visit an ophthalmologist.  Planning treatment for cataracts slows down the need for cataract surgery.

Early Warning Signs of Cataracts

Cataracts range in severity and the treatment will depend on the development and type of cataract you have.  Early signs of cataracts include:

Cloudy Vision:

Fuzzy spots are the most obvious early sign of cataracts.  If individuals start to experience small, fuzzy spots in your field of vision that seem to worsen over time, you may be developing one of the first sign of cataracts.   These signs will start to make normal, daily activities harder than ever before.  If you notice the quick onset of cloudy vision it is important to get into the eye doctor sooner rather than later.

Difficult Night Vision:

Individuals with the early stages of cataracts also mention a gradual decrease in vision at night.  Changes to vision may include darkening or dimming and may also lead to tinges of brown and yellow.  During the day changes may not be as noticeable because there is light to balance vision that is dimming however, at night it is instantly noticeable. 

Light Sensitivity: 

Individuals with emergent cataracts experience discomfort with bright lights.  This becomes more and more difficult to manage as cataracts worsen.  If you notice you are squinting or closing your eyes more around bright light or noticing headaches that come on quickly from flashes and bright lights, it is time to schedule an appointment with an ophthalmologist. 

Halos and Glares:

As cataracts worsen, the lens of the eye hardens and becomes cloudier.  Some cataract suffers mention the appearance of a glare or halo in their field of vision.  The light that passes through the cataract is diffracted which causes a glare and ringlets around bright sources of light.  During the day the halos and glares are less noticeable then that are in the evening. 

Vision Changes:

During the earliest stages of cataracts, individuals may notice changes in vision.  Regular eye exams are crucial for older adults.  In fact, ophthalmologists often detect cataracts before individuals notice a difference in vision. 

Cataract damage is not reversible however, there are some things you can do to slow down their progression.  It is important to talk with your eye doctor first to determine if cataract surgery is needed before cataracts worsen.  Some ways to increase the health of your eye include eating a diet rich in omega-3 fatty acids, wearing sunglasses, determine if your prescription medicine worsen the effects of cataracts, and treat dry eyes with daily eye drops. 

Rohr Eye & Laser Center offers the most advanced technology available to suit your lifestyle and visual needs.  As a leader in laser vision correction and cataract surgery, our goal is to help you achieve the best vision possible without glasses or contact lenses.  More information can be found online at https://michiganlasik.com.

Coping with Cataracts

Cataracts are a way of life for people as they age.  If you notice a cloudiness in your vision, you are most likely developing cataracts.  The clouding is in your eye’s natural lens that lies behind the iris and pupil.  This eye disease is the leading cause of blindness throughout the world.  More people have cataracts across the world than the combination of diabetic retinopathy, macular degeneration, and glaucoma according to PBA, Prevent Blindness America.  In fact, 22 million Americans over the age of 40 are experiencing cataracts.

Three Types of Cataracts

Subcapsular: This is a cataract that develops at the back of the lens.  People that suffer from diabetes or take a high dose of steroid medicine are at a greater risk of developing subcapsular cataracts.

Nuclear: This type of cataract is often associated with aging and forms deep within the nucleus of the lens.

Cortical:  Cortical cataracts appear in the lens cortex (part of the lens surrounding the central nucleus) and often appears as white wedge, working from the periphery of the lens and moves into the center of the lens like a spoke.

Symptoms & Signs

Cataracts begin small and have little effect to a person vision however overtime you will notice that your vision will become a bit hazy and blurred.   You may notice that you become more sensitive to light as well.  The symptoms that are experienced often vary from person to person as well as on the type of cataract that has developed.  An eye exam can give you an official diagnosis.

Causes

The lens of your eye acts similar to a camera lens.  Light is focused onto the retina which gives you clear vision.  It adjusts focus to let things be seen close and far away.  The eyes lens is made up of proteins and water.  Proteins are arranged in a way that keeps the lens clear and allows light to pass through.  As we get older the proteins may get clumped together and cloud the lens.  This is a cataract and will continue to grow making it harder and harder to see clearly. It is not exactly clear why the lens changes and form cataracts however some risk factors are:

  • Ultraviolet radiation from the sun
  • Family history
  • Abuse of alcohol
  • Hormone replacement therapy
  • Extended use of corticosteroid medication
  • Smoking
  • Obesity
  • Diabetes
  • High blood pressure
  • Previous eye surgeries, injuries, and inflammation

 Prevention

There are a number of studies, mostly controversial, show that certain nutrients and nutritional supplements can help reduce the risk of cataracts.  Higher intakes of vitamin E, carotenoids lutein, and zeaxanthin from supplements and nutrients in food have shown to decrease the risk of cataracts.   Wearing sunglasses that offer 100% blockage of the suns UV rays help to reduce the chances of cataracts.  Eye vitamins, a healthy diet, and good nutrition can help in the prevention of cataracts.

Treatment

As symptoms occur your vision may be improved with new glasses, bifocal, increased lighting, and the use of other visual aids.  Surgery is only considered after cataracts have progressed and impair your vision and affect daily happenings. Most people think that bad vision occurs as a normal part of aging but surgery to correct cataracts is fairly simple, pain free, and widely available.

Cataract surgery is successful in restoring vision.  3 million Americans undergo surgery for cataracts each and every year. In fact, 9 out of 10 people regain good eye sight after cataract surgery, between 20/20 and 20/40. Surgeons remove the cloudy lens and replace it with a clear, plastic intraocular lens, IOL.

Recovery

It is important to take time to recover from surgery.  Don’t plan on driving for a few days and avoid strenuous lifting and activities.  It is important not to bend over or put pressure on your eye.

Rohr Eye & Laser Center offers the most advanced technology available to suit your lifestyle and visual needs.  As a leader in laser vision correction and cataract surgery, our goal is to help you achieve the best vision possible without glasses or contact lenses.  More information can be found online at https://michiganlasik.com.

Vision Correction Surgery: What You Should Know About Cataract Surgery

One of the benefits of aging is the amazing side effects it has on our bodies!  Of course, we are being sarcastic however, it is true that as your age increases so do the ailments that affect us.  One of the most common side effects of aging is the development of cataracts.

 

Cataracts are described as a cloudiness on the lens inside your eye.  Often the loss of vision due to cataracts cannot be corrected with the use of contacts, glasses or corneal refractive surgery, LASIK.  We know this sounds scary at first.  However, vision can be restored when it is lost because of cataracts with modern cataract surgery.  Surgery for cataracts often reduce the dependence on vision correction methods as well.

 

As previously mentioned cataracts are most often associated with the process of aging.  Cataracts are more common to seniors and in fact up to 70% of Americans over 80 have been affected by cataracts.  This number is expected to continue to increase in the years ahead.  This is just one of the reasons eye surgeons have taken modernizing cataract surgery so seriously.  It is expected that the population of the United States affected by cataracts is to nearly double by the middle of the century.

 

One of the safest, most effective, widely performed surgical procedures now-a-days is cataract surgery. Three million cataract surgeries are performed each and every year, the majority resulting in unparalleled visual outcomes.

 

During cataract surgery the cloudy lens inside the patient’s eye is removed and replace with an intraocular lens, IOL.  This artificial lens helps to restore clear vision.  The surgical procedure is most often performed on an outpatient basis and doesn’t require the patient to stay overnight.  Modern cataract surgery involves the use of a high-frequency ultrasound that is used to break the cloudy lens into small pieces that can be removed.

 

Modern cataract removal is known as phacoemulsification, phaco for short, and is performed using smaller incisions than used in previous cataract techniques which allow for faster healing times and a reduction in the risks such as retinal detachment that can occur as a complication of cataract surgery.

 

Once all of the remnants of the cloud have been removed from the lens the surgeon then inserts the clear intraocular lens.  It is positioned in the same location as your natural lens, behind the iris and pupil.  Special circumstances may require the lens be placed in front of the iris and pupil, but this is not common.

 

Once the cataract surgeon has removed the cataract and finished the IOL implant procedure with the closing of the incision that was made to your eye a protective shield is put into place over the eye.  This shield is in place to protect the eye as you recover from surgery.

Rohr Eye & Laser Center offers the most advanced technology available to suit your lifestyle and visual needs.  As a leader in laser vision correction and cataract surgery, our goal is to help you achieve the best vision possible without glasses or contact lenses.  More information can be found online at https://michiganlasik.com.