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How Can My Child’s Myopia Be Corrected?

At Cove Eyecare, we help children like yours achieve clear and comfortable vision, so they can succeed at the important things in life.

Methods of Myopia Correction

Contact Lenses

Contacts can be a great choice, especially for physically active children or teens who don’t want to worry about breaking or misplacing their eyeglasses. In some cases of very high myopia, contact lenses can offer clearer vision than glasses.

Corrective contact lenses are usually placed in the eyes upon waking and removed at night before bedtime. There are several types, including: soft contacts, daily disposables, extended wear, and rigid gas permeable (hard) lenses. Navigating through the differences between them can be daunting. Fortunately, if you’re located in Copperas Cove our eye doctor will be happy to guide you. Speak with Dr. Micheline Young to determine whether your child is ready for contact lenses.

Prescription Glasses

Glasses are a popular choice among our younger patients. Choosing from an array of styles makes the process fun and exciting! Allowing the children to be active participants in selecting their eyewear increases the likelihood that they’ll actually wear them. There are strong, flexible and resilient frames which look great and are comfortable too.

The optician can customize the lenses with additions and upgrades like impact-resistant or shatter-proof materials, scratch-resistant and anti-reflective coatings, UV filters, and transition lenses that darken in the sun. For those requiring vision correction for distance and near, we also offer bifocal or multifocal lens prescriptions.

We Can Help Correct Your Child’s Myopia

If you’re located near Copperas Cove, Texas, an eye exam with our optometrist can determine your child’s exact prescription, and give you the opportunity to receive answers to any questions you may have about your child’s eye health and vision. Progressive myopia, where a growing child’s prescription continues to worsen, is why it’s important for myopic children to undergo eye exams at least once a year.

At Cove Eyecare, our friendly and knowledgeable staff will be happy to recommend the most suitable method of correcting your child’s myopia to meet his or her individual needs. Thanks to the wide range options available, your child will walk away with eyewear that will not only enhance his or her style but will also be a boost of confidence.

Let us help your child see the world in a whole new light. To schedule your child’s annual eye exam or if you have any further questions, contact Cove Eyecare at 254-549-1142 today.

Are Floaters and Flashes Dangerous?

You’ve likely experienced occasional visual “floaters” or flashes and may have wondered what they were and if they’re a cause for concern. They look like tiny lines, shapes, shadows, or specks that appear to be drifting in the visual field. More often than not, seeing floaters is a normal occurrence and does not indicate a problem with ocular or visual health. However, when floaters become more frequent and are accompanied by flashes of light, that can indicate a more serious problem.

Eye flashes resemble star-like specks or strands of light that either flash or flicker in one’s field of vision. They can either be a single burst in one visual zone, or can be several flashes throughout a wider area. Flashes can sometimes be missed as they most often appear in the side or peripheral vision.

Floaters & Flashes Eye Care in Copperas Cove, Texas

If you suddenly, or with increasing frequency, experience flashes or floaters, call Cove Eyecare and schedule an eye exam with Dr. Micheline Young right away to rule out any serious eye conditions.

What Causes Floaters?

The vitreous in the eye is a clear gel that fills most of the eyeball and resembles raw egg-white. Within the vitreous are small lumps of protein that drift around and move with the motion of your eyes. When these tiny lumps of protein cast shadows on the retina — the light-sensitive lining at the back of the eye — the shadows appear as floaters.

As we age, the vitreous shrinks, creating more strands of protein. This is why the appearance of floaters may increase with time. Floaters tend to be more prevalent in nearsighted people and diabetics, and occur more frequently following cataract surgery or an eye injury.

If seeing floaters becomes bothersome, try moving your eyes up and down or side to side to gently relocate the floaters away from your visual field.

What Causes Flashes?

Flashes result from the retinal nerve cells being moved or tugged on. As the vitreous shrinks over time, it can tug at the retina, causing you to “see stars” or bursts of light. The process of the vitreous separating from the retina is called “posterior vitreous detachment” (PVD) and usually isn’t dangerous.

In about 16% of cases, PVD causes tiny tears in the retina that can lead to retinal detachment — a sight-threatening condition that causes irreversible blindness if left untreated.

Other possible causes of flashes are eye trauma or migraine headaches.

When To Call Your Optometrist About Floaters

If you experience any of the following symptoms, promptly make an appointment with an eye doctor near you for emergency eye care.

Symptoms You Shouldn’t Ignore

  • A sudden onset of floaters accompanied by flashes (which can be any shape or size)
  • An increase of floaters accompanied by a darkening of one side of the visual field
  • Shadows in the peripheral vision
  • Any time flashes are seen

In many cases, seeing floaters is no cause for concern; however the above symptoms could indicate retinal detachment—which, if left untreated, could cause a permanent loss of sight or even blindness.

If the receptionists pick up the phone and hear the main concern is floaters or flashes, they will try to squeeze in the appointment within 24 hours. Expect the pupils to be dilated during your eye exam, so the eye doctor can get a really good look at the peripheral retina to diagnose or rule out a retinal tear or other serious condition, as opposed to a non-vision-threatening condition such as uncomplicated posterior vitreous detachment (quite common) or ocular migraine.

Please contact Cove Eyecare in Copperas Cove at 254-549-1142 with any further questions, or to schedule an eye doctor’s appointment.

Tips to Relax Your Eyes

Do your eyes hurt after spending a significant amount of time reading, playing video games, driving, or staring at a screen? These visually intense activities can sometimes be hard on the eyes, causing uncomfortable symptoms like headaches and blurry vision. Other symptoms of eye strain can include light sensitivity, neck and shoulder pain, trouble concentrating, and burning or itchy eyes.

Fortunately, preventing painful computer vision syndrome and eye fatigue symptoms can be as simple as trying a few of these eye exercises. To learn more about digital eye strain and discover the best relief options for you, call Cove Eyecare at 254-549-1142 and schedule an eye exam with Dr. Micheline Young.

Relax Your Eyes with These Supportive Techniques

Many of these exercises are designed for computer users. Eye strain resulting from long drives, reading, or other activities, can be alleviated by modifying some of these recommendations.

The Clock Exercise

The clock exercise relieves strain on overworked eye muscles and can help you avoid headaches and eye pain, among other symptoms. Begin the exercise by imagining a large analog clock a few feet in front of you. Keep your head still and move your eyes to the imaginary 9, then to the imaginary 3.

Keep moving your eyes to the opposite pairs on the clock — 10/4, 11/5, 12/6, and so on. Hold your gaze for a second or two on each number before moving on to the next one. Continue doing this for 4-5 minutes.

The 20-20-20 Rule

The 20-20-20 rule helps you avoid dry eyes and eye strain by giving your eyes frequent breaks. After about 20 minutes of screen time or doing close-up work, focus on an object at least 20 feet away for 20 seconds. This gives the eyes a much needed rest and helps them relax. There are also free apps available that provide pop-up reminders that notify you when it’s time to shift your gaze.

Screen Ergonomics

The American Optometric Association recommends placing computer monitors 20 to 28 inches, or 50-70 cm, away from your eyes and the top of the computer should be at eye level or right below for optimum eye comfort. Glare filters can reduce the amount of glare produced by digital devices and improve your viewing experience.

Poor sitting posture can also contribute to eye strain. Your chair should be situated so that your feet are flat on the floor, or use an angled footrest for additional comfort.

Optimize your Eyewear

Since regular prescription lenses or glasses may not adequately meet your visual needs for lengthy computer use, you may benefit from wearing computer glasses. These prescription glasses are customized to your needs and also reduce glare and block blue light.

 

You don’t have to live with the discomforts of eye strain. If symptoms persist, it may be time to visit Cove Eyecare and get the relief you seek. Call our office to schedule a convenient eye doctor’s appointment.

 

What Are the Benefits of Scleral Lenses?

If you have keratoconus, astigmatism or any type of condition associated with an irregular cornea, your eye doctor may have recommended scleral lenses for vision correction. What are these specialty contact lenses, and what do they have to offer? Our Copperas Cove, Texas, explains.

Intro to scleral lenses

Scleral contact lenses are rigid gas permeable contacts that have an extra-wide diameter that vaults over your entire cornea, resting on the whites of your eye (sclera). In contrast to conventional contacts that fit snugly on the surface of your eye, scleral lenses leave a gap between the lens and corneal surface.

At Cove Eyecare, our eye doctor may recommend scleral lenses as the best option to give crisp, comfortable vision for many hard-to-fit conditions, including keratoconus and astigmatism. That’s because there’s a lot to be gained from these unique, advanced contact lenses!

A clear view of the advantages of scleral lenses

  • Stable vision: With sclerals, even the most irregular cornea can be transformed into a smooth, rounded surface that provides consistently sharp vision. Their super-size diameter helps keep scleral lenses centered and stable on your eyes, even if you lead an active lifestyle.
  • Durable wear: These rigid gas permeable contacts are made from high quality materials that last. Therefore, although the cost of scleral lenses may be higher than standard contacts, you’ll benefit from maximum value over time.
  • User friendly: People with poor vision or problems with manual dexterity may find it difficult to handle normal contacts. But the x-large size and hard material of scleral lenses simplifies the whole insertion and removal process.
  • Enhanced comfort for dry eyes: When scleral lenses vault over your cornea, they create a pocket that fills with lubricating tears, improving the comfort for wearers – especially if you suffer from dry eyes. All day long, you can enjoy soothing vision.
  • Wider visual field: The optic zones of scleral lenses are wider and more precise than standard contacts, so your peripheral vision is crisper. Sensitivity to light and glare is also reduced.
  • Effective for astigmatism: Particularly if you have high astigmatism, contact lenses may not effectively correct your vision. That’s when scleral lenses can work much better for you.

How to make scleral lenses work for you

For best results, you need an experienced, knowledgeable eye doctor to perform an eye exam and custom-fit you with scleral lenses. Contact our Copperas Cove, Texas, eye care center today to book an appointment!

At Cove Eyecare, we put your family’s needs first. Talk to us about how we can help you maintain healthy vision. Call us today: 254-549-1142 or book an appointment online to see one of our Copperas Cove eye doctors.

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Can Your Eye Doctor See Floaters?

Eye floaters look like little specks or shapes that glide Eye Care Clinic across your visual field. They can resemble dark specks, outlined strings, or fragments of cobwebs – all of which are actually little pieces of debris or clumps of cells floating in your vitreous gel. When they cast shadows on your retina, you see them. Can your eye doctor also see them?

Yes, your eye doctor can see eye floaters during an eye exam. While most of the time floaters are harmless, sometimes they can indicate a serious, sight-threatening eye problem – such as retinal detachment. Your eye doctor will perform a dilated eye exam to inspect your eye health closely, looking out for signs of a problem.

If you only experience mild floaters without any retinal problem, there’s usually no need to treat eye floaters. However, if they’re severe and interfere with vision (and don’t go away on their own after several months), you may need laser treatment. But this is rare.

If eye floaters appear suddenly and in a large quantity, call your eye doctor immediately for an emergency eye exam. They could signal the start of retinal detachment, which can cause blindness when left untreated.

In the vast majority of cases, eye floaters are nothing more than bothersome, and people can usually ignore them more easily as time passes.

At Cove Eyecare, we put your family’s needs first. Talk to us about how we can help you maintain healthy vision. Call us today: 254-549-1142 or book an appointment online to see one of our Copperas Cove eye doctors.

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Have You Heard of Retinal Microaneurysms?

Many people are familiar with the term “aneurysm,” which refers to when part of an artery wall weakens to the point that it widens abnormally. Most commonly, aneurysms occur in the major artery that leads from the heart or in the brain.

So what are retinal microaneurysms, which occur in the eye? Our eye doctor in Copperas Cove, , and , Texas, explains this generally unfamiliar term.

Definition

Microaneurysms are tiny outpouchings of blood that protrude from an artery or vein. When they occur in the eye, they are known as retinal microaneurysms. If these protrusions open, they leak blood into the tissues of the retina.

Causes

Any type of vascular disease or hypertension can contribute to the development of a retinal microaneurysm, however they have been firmly associated with diabetes. As the first clinically evident sign of diabetic retinopathy, they are regarded as the hallmark of this eye disease.

Symptoms & Diagnosis

Typically, retinal microaneurysms do not cause any noticeable symptoms. That’s why if you have diabetes, it’s essential to book regular dilated eye exams with an eye doctor at one of our Cove Eyecare clinics in Copperas Cove, , and , Texas.

Our eye doctor can detect the microaneurysm during a diabetes eye exam, and further imaging can be done to determine the origin and severity. Diagnosis is critical, because the recognition of microaneurysms is the first step towards preventing the progression of diabetic retinopathy to a stage that causes vision loss.

Treatment

There is no treatment that specifically targets a microaneurysm. Rather, the treatment targets the diabetes that’s behind the condition.

By tightening blood glucose control in your diabetes management, as well as treating any associated other health disorders such as high blood pressure, most microaneurysms are reversible. Adopting a healthy lifestyle and following your doctor’s recommendations for managing diabetes and blood pressure go far towards reducing retinal microaneurysms.

Protect your eyes against diabetic retinopathy with regular diabetes eye exams

Our eye doctors in Copperas Cove, , and , Texas, perform comprehensive, dilated eye exams to inspect for the signs of eye disease associated with diabetes.

At Cove Eyecare, we put your family’s needs first. Talk to us about how we can help you maintain healthy vision. Call us today: 254-549-1142 or book an appointment online to see one of our Copperas Cove eye doctors.

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How Long Does It Take to Get Used to New Glasses?

Most people who wear glasses are familiar with the excitement and confidence boost that accompanies wearing new specs for the first time. But sometimes there is an adjustment period before your vision is fully comfortable. Things may look blurry, or you may notice feeling dizzy after prolonged wear. Some of these symptoms can be a normal part of the adjustment period, but sometimes they’re a reason to contact your eye doctor. If your new glasses are giving you trouble, speak with Dr. Micheline Young about ensuring that your eyesight is both clear and comfortable.

When Will My Eyes Adjust to My New Glasses?

It can take a few days to a few weeks for your eyes and brain to fully adjust to your new eyewear, whether you are increasing your prescription or wearing eyeglasses for the first time.

Even if you are getting new glasses with the same prescription, different frames or lenses can alter your vision until you get used to the new frame style or lens type. The complexity of your prescription and whether you buy a lens with premium optics versus basic spherical lens or polycarbonate material all can affect the adjustment time.

Progressive lenses tend to be the most difficult to adjust to. This is related to the peripheral soft focus zones, which are much less blurred for customized lenses prescribed by your local optometrist.

What Are Some Possible Visual Symptoms I Could Experience?

Some common experiences shared by those adjusting to new eyewear include:

  • Eye strain, headache
  • Blurry vision
  • Trouble with depth perception, nausea and dizziness
  • “Barrel distortion” — objects appear distorted, for high plus lenses
  • “Fishbowl effect” — the feeling that your visual field is being bent along the edges, as if you’re looking through a fishbowl, common in high minus prescriptions

Why Do My New Glasses Give Me a Headache?

Fatigued eye muscles can cause headaches. But your eyes aren’t the only things adjusting to your new lenses. Your brain is also working hard to create a clear picture of the messages it’s receiving from your eyes. This extra brain activity can sometimes bring on a headache, which should only last about a day or so.

Why Do I Feel Dizzy With My New Glasses?

Dizziness and nausea can be caused by problems with depth perception, similar to motion sickness. With motion sickness, you feel uneasy because your brain is having difficulty understanding the position of your body in relation to the space surrounding it. So when you wear your new glasses, your brain may need some time to understand how to interpret the new images it’s receiving, causing you to feel disoriented or dizzy.

When Should I Call My Eye Doctor?

When the adjustment period extends beyond a few weeks, there is a possibility that there was an error in the manufacturing of the lenses. Many people purchase eyewear from somewhere other than their eye doctor or order glasses online, and some studies have shown that up to 40% of online eyewear is made incorrectly or inaccurately.

It’s important to note that many offices may charge fees to check eyewear that is not made by them and that there may be fees for rechecking a patient’s refraction when glasses are made by another source.

Discomfort that lasts longer than a couple of weeks means it’s time to call your optometrist. Persistent symptoms like headaches, dizziness, or blurry vision can indicate that your glasses aren’t well suited to your eyes and need adjusting. Your optometrist will double check the prescription of the glasses among other things to ensure that the new glasses are right for you.

If you need new glasses or are having a hard time adjusting to a new pair, don’t hesitate to contact Cove Eyecare to schedule an appointment with the Copperas Cove eye doctor.

Why Does Your Eye Doctor Dilate Your Pupils for an Eye Exam?

If you’ve been following the guideline to have regular eye exams, then you’re probably familiar with having your pupils dilated. Why does your eye doctor do this?

By dilating your pupils, the eye doctor can get a better view of your inner eye structures – so the eye exam is more comprehensive and more detailed. While the back of your eye can be seen through an undilated pupil, it cannot be examined as fully.

A full evaluation of your macula, retina and optic nerve is possible through dilated pupils. In many common eye diseases, such as macular degeneration, diabetic retinopathy and glaucoma, these are the parts of the eye that exhibit signs of a problem. Also, health conditions such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol and diabetes can often be detected on these parts of the eye.

What happens when the eye doctor dilates your pupils?

Your eye doctor or a technician will insert eye drops into your eyes; it takes 20 – 30 minutes for them to take full effect. Then, your eye doctor will use a lighted microscope to inspect your eyes.

Initially, you may feel a slight stinging when the drops are first inserted, but the discomfort is typically minor and short-lived. For a few hours afterwards, your eyes will be extra-sensitive to light and vision may be slightly blurred. Wearing sunglasses can help manage this sensitivity. Dilation usually wears off within four to six hours.

Even though getting your pupils dilated for an eye exam may feel like a nuisance, it enables your eye doctor to check your ocular health and overall body health with much more accuracy. So the benefits are clear! Contact an expert eye doctor near you to schedule an eye exam.

At Cove Eyecare, we put your family’s needs first. Talk to us about how we can help you maintain healthy vision. Call us today: 254-549-1142 or book an appointment online to see one of our Copperas Cove eye doctors.

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How Does High Blood Pressure Affect Your Eyes?

Hypertension can damage vision, and your eye doctor can spot the signs even before you do

Many people don’t realize that in addition to heart disease and kidney problems, high blood pressure (hypertension) is a risk factor for many dangerous health complications. Typically, hypertension is a chronic condition that causes harm gradually.

How does it damage vision? Our Copperas Cove, Texas, explains that in your eyes, high blood pressure commonly affects the tiny, delicate blood vessels that nourish your eye with blood. When these retinal blood vessels get damaged, you will have trouble focusing. This eye disease is called hypertensive retinopathy, and it can be sight-threatening if hypertension is left untreated.

Symptoms of hypertensive retinopathy

Usually, you won’t notice any symptoms if you have mild or moderate hypertensive retinopathy. You’ll only know you have it as a result of a comprehensive eye exam by your eye doctor. However, if your high blood pressure is more severe, you may experience headaches and problems with your vision.

Diagnosing hypertensive retinopathy

When our Copperas Cove eye doctor performs a dilated eye exam, he or she will use an ophthalmoscope, a device that projects light to inspect the back of your eye, to check for the signs of retinopathy. These signs include:

  • Spots on the retina (called cotton wool spots and exudates)
  • Narrowing of blood vessels
  • Macular swelling and inflammation of the optic nerve
  • Bleeding in the back of the eye

Other ways high blood pressure can damage your eyes

In addition to retinopathy, hypertension can lead to:

  • Choroidopathy, which is a buildup of fluid under the retina. As a result of this excess fluid, you may experience blurry or distorted vision, and sometimes scarring will occur that impairs vision.
  • Optic neuropathy, which is a form of nerve damage. When the blood flow to your eye is blocked, the optic nerve can get damaged and vision loss may occur.

Treating vision damage caused by hypertension

Treatment for all of the possible eye complications of high blood pressure, especially when the conditions are detected early, is quite simple – control your blood pressure! Visit your primary physician for treatment, which may involve changing your diet, adding exercise, losing weight, and taking medication.

To preserve your long-lasting vision and protect your eyes from the risks of high blood pressure, book regular eye exams with our caring, expert eye doctor in Copperas Cove, Texas.

At Cove Eyecare, we put your family’s needs first. Talk to us about how we can help you maintain healthy vision. Call us today: 254-549-1142 or book an appointment online to see one of our Copperas Cove eye doctors.

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Can Lasik Correct Astigmatism?

The “perfect” eyeball would be a smooth sphere with optical lenses that function at their best. But in the real world, this rarely happens. Usually, eyes are not shaped perfectly and visual acuity is therefore compromised. When you have astigmatism, the eye is elliptical – similar to a football shape. As a result of this asymmetry, light rays traveling through it scatter, and vision is blurred.

Astigmatism is a common vision condition. By definition, it is simply a refractive error like nearsightedness and farsightedness. Just like those vision conditions, astigmatism can be corrected with prescription eyeglasses, contact lenses and LASIK. At our eye care clinic, we perform comprehensive eye exams to determine your candidacy for laser surgery. Book a consultation with our optometrist about LASIK.

How can LASIK help?

If you have only a mild astigmatism, laser correction surgery may not be required. But if astigmatism is disturbing your vision, LASIK can be an option.

During this procedure, your eye surgeon will use a laser to reshape your cornea so it is more spherical and can focus light properly. LASIK thereby improves vision across your entire visual field, and not just the part of your view affected by prescription eyewear.

How successful is LASIK for correcting astigmatism?

LASIK for astigmatism can be an excellent solution when compared to alternatives, such as glasses or contact lenses. That’s because eyeglasses and contacts work by cancelling out the visual distortion, whereas LASIK totally changes and corrects the irregularity in your cornea. For many people, the procedure is transformative to their lives.

The success rate of LASIK for astigmatism is associated strongly with the vision prescription of the patient and the unique shape of the eye. Official reports state that LASIK is most suitable for people with a prescription of up to four cylinders of astigmatism. Also, if you only have a tiny amount of astigmatism, such as 0.5 diopter, LASIK may not provide a significant benefit. Therefore, the success rate of LASIK for astigmatism varies, which is why you need an experienced eye doctor to assess your eyes and vision to determine your candidacy.

Our LASIK optometrists offer specialized consultations and eye exams.

Is LASIK affordable?

Even if you have an extreme vision prescription, LASIK is still regarded as an elective treatment by most insurance policies, so it isn’t covered by their basic plans. However, significant savings are frequently offered by various insurance plans. Our staff is knowledgeable about ways to make LASIK affordable, and we’re happy to share the info!

To discuss LASIK and other vision correction procedures, contact us for an appointment.

At Cove Eyecare, we put your family’s needs first. Talk to us about how we can help you maintain healthy vision. Call us today: 254-549-1142 or book an appointment online to see one of our Copperas Cove eye doctors.

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