If you start noticing changes in your vision, see your eye doctor immediately. Some trouble signs to look for are double vision, hazy vision and difficulty seeing in low light conditions. Other signs and symptoms of potentially serious eye problems that warrant immediate attention include red eyes, frequent flashes of light, floaters, and eye pain and swelling.
Good news for coffee and tea drinkers! Two servings of a caffeinated beverage daily are good for protecting against dry eyes. The caffeine helps the human body produce tears, which keep the eyes moist. However, keep in mind that more than two servings can deplete your tear film and dry out your eyes, which can contribute to irritation.
- Dry eye can be a hassle, especially while trying to enjoy a vacation with family. There are some ways to minimize the irritation and other ways to avoid irritants.According to Dr. Pamela Lowe, OD, FAA, “Airplane air quality tends to be drier and more irritating to the eye, especially if you’re a contact lens wearer.” Keeping a bottle of rewetting or lubricating drops will help give instant relief. It's also a good idea to remove contact lenses during airplane travel so your eyes won't be irritated. When you reach your destination, be sure to also remove your contact lenses before entering a public pool or hot tub. The chemicals used to clean the water can be irritating to sensitive eyes. There may also be lingering bacteria from other guests. And don't forget your protective eyewear! Whether your destination is on the beach or in the snowy mountains, our eyes need protection from the sun's UV rays. Wearing glasses is especially important for contact lens wearers.
- Updated 06/07/2023 Have your eyes been red, watery, and feeling gritty? These are some of the most common symptoms of dry eye. Dry eye can be aggravated by staring at digital screens for long periods of time, certain medications, or even from your location. While artificial tears can add some moisture to your eyes, it's only temporary. Take advantage of these tips to help keep your eyes more moist for a longer period of time: 1. Blink OftenTears are made up of many elements; one being oil. When people blink, they wipe that protective layer of oil over the surface of their eye, which helps to keep the eyes moist. If someone is spending a lot of time staring at a screen or reading a book, their blinking is going to slow down. Remind yourself to follow the 20-20-20 rule: every 20 minutes for 20 seconds, look at an object at least 20 feet away. This will keep your blinking at an ideal rate and help keep your eyes moist. 2. Add Fatty Acids to Your DietEating foods rich in fatty acids can help replenish the oils in your eyes. Foods such as walnuts and fish should be incorporated into your diet. As an alternative, you can also take an Omega-3 supplement, such as Focus Relief Plus. 3. Use a HumidifierHot, dry air indoors can deplete the moisture in your eyes. Whether you're at home or work, use a humidifier to help circulate the local moisture. 4. Avoid the WindAccording to the American Optometric Association, wind causes moisture to evaporate from the surface of the eye much faster than it should. If you have dry eyes, you should avoid gusty conditions and devices that blow air, such as hair dryers & fans. If you have to be outside in windy conditions, wearing eyewear can help block the breeze.
- Nutrients such as lutein/zeaxanthin, vitamin C, vitamin E, folate, and omega-3s are important for healthy vision. Enjoy this recipe from the American Optometric Association; it's filled with these nutrients! Servings: 4 Ingredients: 1 tablespoon olive oil1 clove garlic, minced2 tablespoons lemon juice4 four-ounce tuna steaks (preferably sushi grade)1/3 cup red onion, minced2 oranges, peeled with all pith removed, and cubed1 avocado, peeled, seeded, and cubed1/4 cup cilantro, choppedjuice of 1 limesalt and pepper to tasteCooking Instructions: Blend olive oil, garlic, and lemon juice in a shallow pan. Add tuna, turn to coat evenly, cover and marinate for up to 1 hour.In a medium bowl, blend onion, oranges, avocado, cilantro, lime juice, and salt & pepper. Cover and refrigerate for up to 1 hour.Place steaks in a non-stick skillet over medium-high heat. Cook 2 minutes per side for medium rare (3 to 4 minutes per side for well done). Serve with salsa spooned over top.
- Ahh Spring! It's a love/hate relationship for some. Although most look forward to the warm weather that Spring brings, those with seasonal allergies may not be so excited. Springtime is the start of red, itchy, watery eyes and runny noses for those that suffer from allergies. If you're looking to spend some time in the sun and enjoy the breeze outside, you can control your symptoms to a degree. Aside from over-the-counter medicine and prescription drugs, follow these 5 steps to minimize your symtpoms: Wear Sunglasses/Eyeglasses - Wearing eyewear when outside is a great way to protect your eyes from pollenKeep Your Windows Closed - This includes your windows at home and while you're in the car. Leaving either of these windows open allows pollen to blow right inRemove Outerwear When Returning Inside - Take off your jacket, hat and shoes as soon as you get into the house to avoid tracking pollen inside. Avoid hanging laundry outside to dry; this will easily track pollen inside as well. Bathe Before Bed - Take a shower before you hit the hay to remove any pollen from your skin and hair.Check the Weather Forecast - Monitoring the pollen count can help you determine when to spend the most and least time outside and will help you determine when to follow the above steps when the counts are really high. If you follow these steps, we hope you are able to enjoy the sunshine a little bit more!
- Updated: 12/05/2023 Dr. Farr is sharing this delicious salad recipe with us to support healthy vision. Making 4-6 servings, this salad is great as a meal topped with grilled chicken or salmon. The dressing can be made several hours ahead and refrigerated. Spinach Salad with Berry Vinaigrette(Serves 4-6) Ingredients: 4 cups baby spinach 1/2 cup kale cut into thin strips 1 cup blueberries 1 cup strawberries 1/2 cup raspberries 1 apple (preferably Gala or Green) cored and sliced thin with skin on 1/4 cup dried cherries 1/2 cup crumbled blue cheese 1/4 cup walnuts (candied if you wish) 1/3 cup red wine vinegar 1/4 cup olive oil 1 tablespoon Flax seed oil 2 tablespoons honey Directions: Place 1/2 cup strawberries, 1/4 cup blueberries, red wine vinegar, olive oil, flax seed oil, and honey in a blender. Blend until smooth. Mix the spinach with the kale and place in the center of plates. Garnish with the next seven ingredients and top with 2 tablespoons of dressing. Doctor’s Note:This salad is great as a meal topped with grilled chicken or salmon, as shown. The dressing can be made several hours ahead and refrigerated. Visit https://www.cookwithdoc.com/ for more recipes!
- Eye allergies can be such a nuisance. How can you eliminate them for healthy eyes? The key is to avoid or limit contact with whatever may be causing the problem. An allergist can perform a skin or blood test to identify exactly what it is that you're allergic to. There can be many factors triggering your eye allergies and various ways to avoid them. Pollen: When pollen counts are high, try to eliminate the amount of time spent outdoors. If you are outside, trying wearing sunglasses to prevent pollen from getting into your eyes. If you're inside, keep the windows closed and use air conditioning; a window fan will pull the pollen inside.Mold: High humidity can cause mold to grow. The humidity level in your home should be kept around 30 to 50 percent.Dust: Using special allergen-reducing bedding, washing your bedding frequently, and using a damp mop or rag to clean your floors are all ways to limit your exposure to dust mites.Pets: If you own a pet but have allergies to it, consider hardwood or tile floors rather than carpeting to reduce pet dander. Always wash your hands after touching a pet, especially before your hands come into contact with your eyes.If you are doing all of the above and are still experiencing allergy symptoms, you can also try using eye drops and allergy medicine. Artificial Tears: These eyedrops will relieve dry, irritated eye by adding moisture and temporarily washing allergens from the eye.Decongestants: Although these eyedrops will relieve eye itchiness, they should not be used for more the two to three days.Oral Antihistamines: While they are helpful in relieving itchy eyes, they can also make your eyes more dry.Antihistamine/Mast-Cell Stabilizers: Used once or twice a day, eyedrops with antihistamine and a mast-cell stabilizer can relieve itching, redness, tearing and burning.Corticosteriods: Steroid eyedrops are used to treat chronic eye allergy symptoms - itching, redness and swelling.Immunotherapy Shots: An allergy shot may be given if eyedrops and other over-the-counter medicine is not working. These shots will allow you to become immune to the allergens.Make sure to schedule a consultation with your doctor; they can help determine what treatment is best for you.
- Nutrients such as vitamin C, vitamin E, lutein/zeaxanthin, folate, zinc, omega-3s, fiber, B vitamins, iron, and potassium are important for healthy vision. Enjoy this recipe from the American Optometric Association; it's filled with these nutrients! INGREDIENTS: 1/4 cup low-sodium soy sauce1 tablespoon sesame oil1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger root2 tablespoons lemon juicepinch of red pepper flakes4 four-ounce skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1" strips DRESSING: 3 tablespoons lemon juice1 tablespoon minced lemon peel2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil1 tablespoon honeysalt and pepper to tastecooking spray8 cups baby lettuce1 /2 cup thinly sliced red onion1 /2 cup julienned red bell pepper1 large mango, peeled, seeded, and diced2 tablespoons mint leaves, mincedCOOKING INSTRUCTIONS: Marinade: In a blender, whip soy sauce, oil, ginger, lemon juice, and red pepper flakes. Place chicken in a shallow pan and pour marinade over top. Turn to coat, cover, and refrigerate up to 1 hour.Dressing: Blend ingredients (lemon juice and peel, oil, honey, and salt/pepper). Set aside for flavors to blend.Spray a large, non-stick skillet with cooking spray and heat over medium-high heat. Add chicken strips and cook on each side for 2 minutes, or until done. Remove from heat.In a large salad bowl, toss lettuce, onions, and peppers. Add dressing and toss thoroughly.Divide onto 4 salad plates, top with chicken strips and mango. Sprinkle with mint leaves.Makes 4 servings.
- Dry eye syndrome is one of the most common reasons that patients schedule an appointment with their eye care professional. Symptoms of dry eyes include irritation, foreign-body sensation, burning, itching, and excess tearing. However, there are a number of disorders that may mimic these symptoms and they form a broad category of diagnoses referred to as Ocular Surface Disease. Ocular surface complaints are most commonly secondary to one of two disease states: 1) aqueous tear deficiency, and 2) evaporative dry eye. Since these two conditions are managed differently, it is important for your eye care provider to accurately diagnose your condition. Nevertheless, these two entities frequently coexist in many patients and require multiple treatment approaches. “Aqueous tear deficiency” refers to an inadequate tear production by your eyes (i.e., “My eyes don’t make enough tears”). This form of dry eye syndrome is more common with aging (although young patients can also be affected) and in females, especially perimenopausal females due to hormonal changes that affect tear production. It is also more common in contact lens wearers and is a frequent cause of contact lens intolerance, forcing many patients to stop wearing contacts during their middle age years due to chronic irritation and dryness. Contact lens wear in the setting of dry eyes increases the risk of contact lens-related corneal infections. Systemic medications may also exacerbate dry eye complaints. Common offenders include antidepressants, antihistamines and allergy medications, oral contraceptives, and beta-blockers. Finally, aqueous tear deficiency dry eye may be associated with certain underlying autoimmune diseases to include rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, and Sjogren’s syndrome. “Evaporative dry eye” refers to an unstable and dysfunctional tear film (i.e., “My eyes make enough tears, but the tears that I do make evaporate too quickly”). The normal tear film consists of three layers; The innermost layer that is in direct contact with the cornea is the mucin (mucous) layer, the outermost layer of the tear film is the lipid (oily) layer, between the inner mucin layer and outer lipid layer is the aqueous (watery) portion of the tear film. Patients with evaporative dry eye have an abnormal outer lipid/oil layer with insufficient coating of the tear film resulting in evaporation and drying of the underlying aqueous/water component of the tear film. This, in turn, causes the eyes to feel dry with symptoms of redness, burning, itching, tearing, and crusting on the eyelashes upon awakening. While evaporative dry eye tends to be worse in the morning, the same symptoms that occur in aqueous tear deficiency dry eye are more problematic later in the day. This fact can help to identify the underlying cause of your dry eyes based on when your symptoms are most severe. Evaporative dry eye is frequently associated with disorders of the eyelids, namely blepharitis, meibomian gland dysfunction (MGD), and ocular rosacea. The meibomian glands function to secrete the lipid/oil layer over the tear film. When these glands become clogged and poorly functioning, the tear film lacks the normal oil layer that is supposed to slow the evaporation of the water component of your natural tears. As a result of the lack of this lipid/oil layer, the normal tear film breaks up and evaporates prematurely. This causes the eyes to dry, thus patients suffer from dry eye symptoms. “If my eyes are dry, then why do I have excess tearing?” This is a common question among dry eye sufferers and seems to be counterintuitive. When the eye becomes dry as a result of poor tear production or evaporation of the tear film, the cornea develops tiny dry spots called “punctate epithelial erosions” (PEE). These dry spots are similar to small isolated corneal abrasions and are very irritating to the eye. Because of this eye surface irritation and drying, the tear producing lacrimal glands in the eye increase their tear production which causes the common symptom of excess tearing (known as epiphora). In essence, it is the eye’s attempt to heal those tiny dry areas on the cornea. Proper treatment of the underlying dry eye state usually improves this symptom of excessive tearing.
- Studies have found that Omega-3 fatty acids are beneficial to eye health. This recipe from American Optometric Association is filled with nutrition for your eyes. Smoked Salmon Pizza with Dill & Lemon Servings: 6 Ingredients: Cooking spray2/3 cup fat-free sour cream3 tablespoons chopped fresh dill2 teaspoons lemon zest1 clove garlic, mincedPinch of red pepper flakesBlack pepper1 13.8 ounce can refrigerated pizza crust (such as Pillsbury Pizza Crust Classic)1 cup thinly sliced red onion6 ounces thinly sliced smoked salmon1/4 cup peeled and thinly sliced cucumber Directions: Coat a pizza pan or cookie sheet with cooking spray. Set aside. Heat oven to 425°F.In a small bowl, thoroughly mix first 6 ingredients (sour cream through pepper). Set aside to let flavors blend.Remove pizza dough from tube. Knead until smooth, roll into a ball, and spread on a round pizza pan or cookie sheet until 12" round in diameter.Sprinkle onion evenly over top and bake for 12 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from oven and cool.Spread sour cream mixture over pizza crust, top with salmon and cucumbers.
- Have you ever travelled and noticed your eyes becoming increasingly itchy, watery, or irritated in any way? You may not be aware, but the environment you’re in will dictate the level of comfort your eyes experience. There are many factors that can contribute to this feeling of discomfort and dry eye. Temperatures: Hot or cold, extreme temperatures can cause irritation to the eye.Humidity: If you’ve been diagnosed with dry eye, avoid areas with little to no humidity as it can be quite bothersome. If you have to be in these types of areas, use a humidifier to alleviate some of the side effects.Wind: Wind dries the surface of the eye which will cause watery eyes.Altitude: Higher altitudes have lower amounts of oxygen which will leave you with dry eye.Pollutants: Smoke and exhaust fumes are some of the types of pollutants that can be irritating to the eyes.What are some of the worst cities for dry eye? While there are plenty more, we’re sharing the top 10: Las Vegas, NevadaLubbock, TexasEl Paso, TexasMidland/Odessa, TexasDallas/Fort Worth, TexasAtlanta, GeorgiaSalt Lake City, UtahPhoenix, ArizonaAmarillo, TexasHonolulu, HawaiiIf you find yourself in any of these environments and are experiencing some of the above symptoms, you may be suffering from dry eye.
- Foods rich in nutrition and that support our overall bodies' health are important to incorporate into our diet. Our recipe of the week, from EyeCare America, a public service program of The Foundation of the American Academy of Ophthalmology, is a delicious, yet healthy meal option that supports the vision. Salmon and Horseradish Marinated Vegetable Summer Roll Servings: 4Prep Time: 12 minutesCook Time: 6 minutes Ingredients: • 1 ½ pound of skinless salmon filet cut, horizontally into 1 inch strips• 2 Tablespoons of olive oil for cooking plus an additional 2 Tablespoons for the salad• Juice of one lemon• 1 Tablespoon of grated horseradish• 2 medium carrots peeled, sliced julienne• 1 large English cucumber (discard the seeds), sliced julienne• 1 large slack of celery, sliced julienne• 1 granny smith apple, sliced julienne• bunch of mint leaves finely sliced• ½ teaspoon of salt and fresh ground pepper plus additional forseasoning the salmon strips• 4 dried rice papers• black sesame seeds for garnish (optional) Cooking Instructions: Heat the olive oil in a large nonstick pan on high heat. Season the salmon with salt and fresh ground pepper. When the oil is very hot, place the salmon strips in the pan and cook for 2 minutes. Using a spatula carefully turn the salmon on the other side and sear for another minute on low heat. Remove salmon. In a medium salad bowl, whisk the remaining olive oil, lemon juice, horseradish, and ½ teaspoon of salt and freshly ground pepper. Add the julienned vegetables and the sliced mint leaves. Toss to coat. Soak the dry rice paper in a large bowl filled with room temperature water for 10 seconds. Then lay it flat on a clean kitchen towel. Place the julienned vegetables in the center of the rice paper forming a thin line leaving a 1 inch border on each end. Add the salmon on top of the vegetables then roll tightly. Slice at an angle and serve. Sprinkle with the black sesame seeds.
- Our eyes are drawn to color. Why does that matter when it comes to food? The more colorful our food is that we eat, the more protection the eyes are getting. Healthy food means healthy vision! Enjoy this vibrant and delicious recipe from EyeCare America, a public service program of The Foundation of the American Academy of Ophthalmology. Caesar Pasta Primavera Ingredients: Serving Size: 1/6 recipe, Total Servings: 6 1 (12-ounce) package regular or multi-grain bow-tie pasta2 tablespoons olive oil1/4 pound asparagus, cut into 1-1/2-inch pieces1/4 pound snow peas, trimmed2 medium carrots, thinly sliced1 medium-sized yellow or red bell pepper, cut into 1-inch chunks3 medium plum tomatoes, cut into thin wedges3 garlic cloves, minced1 (14-1/2-ounce) can ready-to-serve reduced-sodium chicken or vegetable broth1 (1.2-ounce) package dry Caesar dressing mix2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese (optional) Cooking Instructions: Cook pasta according to package directions, omitting the salt; drain. Meanwhile, in a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat and sauté asparagus, snow peas, carrots, and bell pepper 2 minutes. Stir in tomatoes and garlic.In a small bowl, combine broth and dressing mix; pour over vegetables and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer 5 to 7 minutes, or until vegetables are crisp-tender, stirring occasionally.In a large bowl, combine hot pasta and vegetable mixture; add Parmesan cheese, if desired, and toss until well coated. Serve immediately.
- Whether you're a professional athlete or just playing sports for fun, your vision is very important. You need to be able to observe what is going on around you, track fast movements, and focus on fast moving objects. As the eye ages, these factors can be problem areas for many. Eye vitamins are a way to maintain healthy eyes to keep up with your favorite sports and hobbies. Good vision can sometimes be a winning or losing factor in your game. With that being said, there are many vision skills you should posses to be at the top of your game. Dynamic Visual Acuity - For sports such as tennis or racquetball, you need to be able to precisely see objects while you and/or the objects are moving at a fast pace. Visual Concentration - Visual concentration is being able to block out distractions that are within your field of vision and staying focused on the object. This skill is especially important during a short putt in golf - keep your eye on the prize!Eye Tracking - Any sport with balls or a fast-moving opponent requires you to be able to follow objects without a lot of head motion. Eye tracking will help with balancing and reacting quickly.Visual Memory - Your visual memory allows you to process and remember a quick, complex picture of people and things going on around you. Eye-Hand-Body Coordination - This affects both timing and body control as it depends on how your hands, feet, body and other muscles respond to information gathered through your eyes. Visualization - Have you ever pictured yourself hitting the perfect drive? Researchers have found that picturing yourself doing something, can actually help you do it. Peripheral Vision ⁃ As much of what happens in sports does not usually happen directly in front of you, it's important to be able to see action from the corner of your eye, without turning your head.Visual Reaction Time - Your visual reaction time is the speed in which your brain interprets and reacts to your opponent's action. This is especially important when returning that tennis serve.Depth Perception ⁃ Depth perception allows you to quickly and accurately judge the distance between yourself, the ball, the opponent, teammates, boundary lines, etc. This is typically used most during racket sports.
- For years I have talked to my patients about the importance of diet in slowing down macular degeneration. Dozens of scientific papers have reported how diets containing certain ingredients (such as blueberries, spinach, Omega-3 rich fish) have helped those with AMD. In the Age Related Eye Disease Study (AREDS) specific components were tested and found to be helpful in slowing down AMD progression. Taking the AREDS-2 eye vitamins is very important but it is also beneficial to incorporate these nutrients in one's diet. Cookwithdoc.com is an extension of my conversations with my patients about recipes that may help those with AMD. I am excited to partner with Focus Vitamins to share some of my favorite recipes with you. Salmon with Dill Yogurt Sauce(Serves: 4-6)Ingredients:Yogurt Sauce1 1/2 cups fat-free Greek Yogurt2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill1 clove garlic, minced1 tablespoon grated lemon zest1 teaspoon lemon juicesea salt and pepper– to tasteSalmon1 1/2 pounds Salmon3 tablespoons chopped dill3 fresh lemons sliced (1/4 inch slices)Directions:Yogurt Sauce: Mix the first 5 ingredients and season to taste with salt and pepper. Cover and refrigerate. Can be made 1-2 days ahead.Salmon: Preheat oven to 375°F. Line a 13” by 9” shallow baking dish with non-stick aluminum foil. Place a layer of chopped dill and top with the salmon. Place remaining dill atop salmon and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cover the salmon with lemon slices. Cover loosely with foil and place in the oven. Cook until desired doneness, usually about 15 minutes. Serve salmon with the yogurt sauce.Doctors note:This makes for an easy make-ahead dish. The yogurt sauce can be made a day or two ahead and the salmon can be dressed a day ahead and refrigerated then cooked prior to serving. Covered in lemons the salmon makes a nice presentation.