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Why Do Onions Make Us Cry?

Onions are one of the most common staple foods around the globe. Ironically, for a vegetable so delicious, they can often be tear-jerkers.

Read on to learn why onions cause your eyes to tear and sting, and what you can do to minimize discomfort.

Why Does Cutting Onions Cause Tearing?

Onions produce a sulfur compound called propyl sulfoxide that is stored in the cells of the onion bulb (the part of the onion we eat). Onions grow underground, where they can be eaten by all types of creatures. This odorous sulfuric compound acts as a deterrent to small animals with big appetites.

When one slices into an onion and breaks open its cells, the sulfur compound is released and mixes with the moisture in the air — turning it into smelly and irritating sulfuric acid. When this chemical rises up and comes in contact with your eyes, it stings!

To keep your eyes from potentially being damaged from this chemical exposure, your brain triggers your eyes to tear and flush out the irritating gas particles. Once enough tears have flushed out the sulfuric acids particles from the eye, clear vision and comfort is usually restored. Although your eyes may sting and feel unpleasant, symptoms are temporary and the sulfuric acid won’t damage your eyes.

How Can I Reduce Eye Discomfort When Chopping Onions?

Most experienced chefs will tell you that chilling your onions in the fridge for at least 30 minutes before slicing them will reduce the amount of tearing they cause. Propyl sulfoxide escapes slower in cooler temperatures, reducing the amount of sulfuric acid in the air.

You can also try cutting the onions at arm’s length, or direct the odorous air away with a small fan. Some say that chopping onions immersed in water also helps. Another option is to wear kitchen goggles to protect your eyes.

Furthermore, try to use fresh onions whenever possible. The longer an onion has been stored, the more likely it will induce tearing and discomfort. Try to avoid slicing near the root end of the bulb, as that area has the highest concentration of sulfuric compounds.

Still Having Eye Problems Out of the Kitchen?

If you frequently suffer from eye irritation — and not just while cutting onions — we can help. At Cove Eyecare, we treat a wide range of eye conditions and can provide you with the treatment and relief you seek.

For further questions or to schedule an eye exam, call us today.

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.

Want to Learn More? Read on!

Frequently Asked Questions with Dr. Micheline Young

Q: What exactly is glaucoma?

  • A: Glaucoma is a condition in which the eye’s intraocular pressure (IOP) is too high. This means that your eye has too much aqueous humor in it, either because it produced too much, or because it’s not draining properly. Other symptoms are optic nerve damage and vision loss. Glaucoma is a silent disease that robs the patient of their peripheral vision. Early detection is very important.

Q: What’s the difference between vision insurance and eye insurance?

  • A: Vision insurance” really isn’t insurance, but rather a benefit that covers some of your costs for eyewear and eye care. It is meant to be used for “routine” care when you aren’t having a problem but want to be sure everything is OK, like having an annual screening exam with your Primary Care Physician. It often, but not always, includes a discount or allowance toward glasses or contact lenses. It is usually a supplemental policy to your medical health insurance. Medical health insurance covers, and must be used when an eye health issue exists. This includes pink eye, eye allergies, glaucoma, floaters, cataracts, diabetes, headaches, and many other conditions. Blurry vision is covered medically if it relates to a medical condition, for example the development of a cataract. For some reason, however, it is considered non-medical if the only finding is the need for glasses or a change of prescription. Of course you can’t know this until you have the exam. In this case, with vision coverage, you would only be responsible for your co-pay, but with medical coverage without vision coverage, you’d be responsible for the usual charge.

Q: How does high blood pressure affect vision?

  • A: If the blood pressure is very high it can be called malignant hypertension and cause swelling of the macula and acute loss of vision. Otherwise hypertension can cause progressive constriction of the arterioles in the eye and other findings. Usually high blood pressure alone will not affect vision much, however hypertension is a known risk factor in the onset and/or progression of other eye disease such as glaucoma, diabetic retinopathy, and macular degeneration as well as blocked veins and arteries in the retina or nerve of the eye that can severely affect vision.

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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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How You Can Help Prevent Diabetic Eye Diseases

Diabetes raises your risk of developing certain eye diseases, such as glaucoma, diabetic retinopathy, and cataracts. Many of our patients ask how long does it take for diabetes to damage eyes? Actually, diabetes can have both short-term and long-term effects on your eye health.

In the short-term, high blood sugars can cause the lens of the eye to swell, leading to temporary blurry vision. The blurriness generally goes away within a short time after blood sugar levels return to normal. But long-term uncontrolled blood sugar levels can permanently damage the small blood vessels of the eye.

However, it’s not inevitable that every individual with diabetes suffers from sight-threatening vision damage! There are steps you can take to reduce your chances of eye disease and preserve your eyesight. Our eye doctor in Copperas Cove, Texas, strongly encourages everyone with diabetes to follow these guidelines:

Visit your eye doctor for yearly eye exams

Diabetic eye diseases typically present no symptoms during the early stages. Only a comprehensive eye exam can spot the signs. What exactly is your eye doctor looking at?

At our Copperas Cove eye clinic, our eye doctor will dilate your pupils to closely inspect your optic nerve and check the tiny blood vessels of your retina. If we detect the start of eye disease, we will recommend the most suitable treatment. So the earlier the disease is noticed, the earlier you will begin to benefit from sight-saving treatments!

Maintain healthy blood sugar levels

Controlling your blood sugar within the parameters recommended by your physician goes far towards preventing eye disease and vision loss. Tight blood glucose control is the key towards having sharp, healthy sight for as long as possible with diabetes.

Keep an eye on blood pressure and cholesterol levels

In addition to normal blood sugars, it’s essential to watch your blood pressure and cholesterol levels too. Both hypertension and high cholesterol increase your risk of eye disease and a range of other health problems. A good blood pressure goal for people with diabetes is under 140/90; if your doctor has prescribed medication to help control blood pressure, it’s important to be vigilant about taking it.

Don’t smoke

If you’re a smoker, it’s high time to quit! Smoking raises your risk of diabetic retinopathy and other eye diseases associated with diabetes.

Exercise regularly

Exercise keeps your body and your eyes in good shape. It is also an effective way to help control your diabetes. However, our Copperas Cove eye doctor cautions patients who already have eye problems to avoid exercises that can strain the blood vessels in your eyes, such as weight lifting or very high-impact activities.

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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Pink Eye? It Could Be Coronavirus

How to prevent conjunctivitis and protect your eyes

When you have a virus, especially one that causes a hacking cough, runny nose, and other symptoms of a common cold or flu, it’s typical for your eyes to also get puffy and red. You may be suffering from viral conjunctivitis, also known as pink eye.

How do viruses get into your eyes?

It’s rather simple. When you’re sick, you can easily transfer viruses to your eyes by sneezing, coughing into your hands, or blowing your nose – and then touching the area around your eye.

The coronavirus – pink eye connection

According to the American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO), doctors have discovered that COVID-19 can cause conjunctivitis. If you’re standing within six feet of an infected person, and they cough or sneeze, the virus can enter your eye. Alternatively, if someone sneezes and virus particles land on the shopping cart that you take and push around a store, and then you touch your eyes without washing your hands first – you’re giving the virus direct access.

However, despite the apparent ease with which coronavirus can infect eyes, the AAO reports that only about 1 – 3% of all patients with the virus contract pink eye.

Preventing pink eye

Like always, prevention is the most effective medicine! Eye care professionals recommend following these tips to help prevent getting viral conjunctivitis:

  • Wash your hands correctly

The CDC instructs people to wash their hands in accordance with these steps: wet your hands, turn off the tap, apply soap, lather and scrub for 20 seconds, turn on tap and rinse. Air dry your hands, use a disposable paper towel and discard it immediately, or use a clean (not shared) towel.

  • Keep your fingers away from your face

No rubbing or wiping your eyes! Even if you don’t feel any symptoms of coronavirus, it’s essential not to touch any part of your face. To wipe away tears or remove makeup, use a clean tissue.

  • Don’t share your personal things

As generous as you may feel about letting others use your personal items, now’s the time to keep things to yourself. For example, the CDC recommends not sharing eye drops, makeup, makeup brushes, contact lenses cases, pillowcases, or towels. Pink eye is highly contagious.

  • Consider wearing glasses instead of contacts

While there’s currently no evidence to prove that wearing contacts raises your risks of contracting the novel coronavirus, there’s some evidence that shows you can get Covid-19 by touching a contaminated surface and then touching your eyes. In general, contact lenses wearers touch their eyes more often than people who wear eyeglasses, so it may be smart to make a temporary switch from contact lenses to glasses. However, this is only a friendly recommendation and not a hard-and-fast rule. If you prefer to stick with wearing contacts, washing your hands thoroughly can help keep you and your eyes safe.

Treatment for conjunctivitis

Regardless of whether your pink eye is caused by coronavirus or a different virus, there is no treatment for viral conjunctivitis. Usually, it goes away on its own within one to two weeks.

To alleviate your painful symptoms, eye doctors recommend:

  • Taking an over-the-counter pain medication, such as acetaminophen, ibuprofen or any anti-inflammatory drug
  • Applying a warm compress on your eye for a few minutes; take care to use a clean wash cloth each time and for each eye
  • Use artificial tears (lubricating eye drops) to soothe your eye irritation; don’t touch the bottle tip to your eye

Are you sick and have pink eye symptoms?

Now is not the time to make a DIY diagnosis. Eye redness, even if you have a virus, doesn’t necessarily indicate that you have conjunctivitis. A wide range of other conditions can lead to the same symptoms. Contact an eye doctor near you for help to figure out what’s causing your eye pain. Don’t visit your eye care practice without calling for guidance first, because extra precautions must be taken with patients who may have COVID-19.

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 Diabetic Retinopathy Be Reversed?

Evidence shows you can reverse diabetic complications with strict diabetes control and a healthy lifestyle

It’s long been known that diabetic complications, such as diabetic retinopathy, can be slowed by taking severe control of blood sugar levels and making healthy lifestyle changes. However, there’s also evidence to suggest that complications can actually be reversed. It appears that as long as the right conditions are met, the body can heal some of the damage.

If you have diabetes, we recommend regular visits to our eye care practice in Copperas Cove, Texas, for an eye exam to inspect for diabetic retinopathy and other types of diabetic eye disease. Remember, when caught early, diabetic eye disease is treatable!

Eye exams and diabetic retinopathy

Diabetic retinopathy is a typical complication of diabetes, in which abnormally high blood sugar levels lead to retinal damage, vision loss or blindness.

If we detect the early signs of diabetic retinopathy during your comprehensive eye exam at Cove Eyecare, you can start making lifestyle changes immediately, such as tighter blood glucose management, exercise and a healthy diet, to prevent the disease from progressing. By visiting for regular dilated eye exams, our eye doctor can monitor your symptoms and work with you to design a modern treatment plan to slow or reverse vision loss.

The effects of diet on diabetic retinopathy

The most famous diet-based therapy for reversing serious chronic disease is credited to Dr. Walter Kempner, physician of the ophthalmology department at Duke University, who pioneered the approach with his recommendations for eating mostly rice and fruit. Kempner’s diet was plant-based and ultra-low in sodium, fat, cholesterol and protein.

Kempner conducted a patient study in which he took “eyegrounds photographs”, which captured a view of the back of the eye. By tracking changes in these images, he demonstrated that diet could actually reverse damage. In fact, he found some patients who had suffered extreme vision loss due to diabetic retinopathy were later able to read fine print again. Of the 44 patients in his study who had diabetic retinopathy, 30% of them saw improvement in their vision.

Nowadays, we have many advanced laser therapies and injections to treat diabetic retinopathy. While Kempner’s food plan is not recommended as a stand-alone approach, it does show that what you eat can be very powerful for preserving your eye health!

What you can do to slow the progression of diabetic retinopathy

According to the American Optometric Association, there are several ways you can slow or possibly reverse the progression of diabetic retinopathy:

  • Manage blood sugar levels as tightly as possible
  • Take any prescription medications according to your doctor’s recommendations
  • Eat a healthy diet
  • Exercise regularly
  • Control hypertension
  • Don’t smoke and avoid alcohol
  • Don’t miss routine eye exams that enable your eye doctor to monitor your condition and change treatment, as necessary.

To schedule a diabetes eye exam with a qualified, experienced eye doctor, contact our Copperas Cove, Texas, eye care practice.

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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My eye is tender and painful – is it an eye emergency?

How to know when you need emergency eye care

An eye emergency includes: chemicals or a foreign object getting into and irritating your eye, or suffering an injury or burn to your eye and/or the surrounding area. Typically, these occurrences will cause your eye to feel painful and tender. Sometimes the symptoms are temporary and heal on their own, but other times these problems can lead to some vision loss and permanent damage. Don’t take risks – your problem may be an eye emergency that requires treatment. Contact our eye doctor in Copperas Cove, , or , Texas, for an urgent eye exam!

What are the common symptoms of an eye emergency?

The way you feel is individual, and eye emergencies span a wide array of incidents and symptoms, but the some signs include:

  • Vision loss, decreased vision
  • Stinging or burning
  • Severe itching
  • Redness and irritation
  • Discharge from the eye
  • Bleeding from the eye, blood in the white of your eye
  • Painful vision
  • Tender eye, bruising around the eye
  • Pupils that are not equal size
  • One eye is bulging
  • One eye isn’t moving like the other one
  • Double vision
  • Light sensitivity
  • New or severe headaches

These symptoms may be a warning sign that you need to visit an eye care center near you! Contact one of our Cove Eyecare optometry offices for assistance.

What should I do if I have an eye emergency?

The way you respond depends on the type of eye injury you’re dealing with. Here’s a review of the best first responses to an eye emergency, all of which should be followed by a visit to your eye doctor.

Eye cuts and puncture wounds

The most important guideline to follow is to NOT rub your eye or surrounding skin. Cover your eye with a hard, circular object, such as the bottom of a paper cup. Don’t put pressure on your eye while supporting this protective shield, and attach it over your eye gently with a piece of tape. Head to your eye doctor or nearby emergency eye care center immediately.

Blunt force trauma to your eye

If you get smacked in the eye with a ball or any forceful object, gently place an ice pack or cold compress against your eye as soon as possible. It’s important to keep your head elevated while doing this, in order to minimize inflammation. If you experience any changes to your vision or your eye is very painful and tender, visit your eye doctor.

Objects stuck in your eye

Don’t rub your eye, doing this can scratch your cornea by moving the foreign body around under your eyelid. If the object has penetrated your eye, don’t attempt to remove it on your own – go to an eye doctor for emergency eye care. If the object is not embedded in your eye, flush your eyes with water or an eye wash to rinse out the item, or use a damp swab of cotton to try to gently remove it. If you’re not successful, visit your eye care center.

When chemicals splash into your eye

Chemicals, including basic household cleaners, can damage your eye. The first thing to do is flush out your eye with water – immediately! Don’t cover your eye; instead, hold your eye wide open beneath a stream of water for about 15 minutes, allowing the water to run over it. Then contact your eye doctor for assistance, or visit an eye clinic near you for an eye exam.

Eye protection comes first

While we hope these tips will be helpful in the event of an eye emergency, the #1 tip we have to offer is to safeguard your eyes as much as possible so you never need to follow these instructions! Protective eyewear can prevent many eye emergencies. You can check out our collection of safety goggles and sports eyewear in Copperas Cove, , and , Texas – we’ll match you with the best protective glasses for the activities you do.

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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I Think I Have Glaucoma! What Should I Do?

That depends… If you think you have glaucoma, the actions you should take vary depending on your symptoms and what type of glaucoma it is. There are actually a few types of glaucoma, the most common of which is open-angle glaucoma, which affects about 90% of all people diagnosed with this eye disease. Less common, but presenting much more of an immediate threat to your vision, is acute closed or narrow angle glaucoma. Although both types of glaucoma involve elevated pressure of your intraocular fluid, the symptoms and treatment for the different types of glaucoma are not the same.

To find out whether you really have glaucoma and which type it is, you need to visit an eye doctor. We can diagnose or rule out this dangerous eye disease by performing a comprehensive eye exam in our Copperas Cove, Texas, optometry office.

Do I have open-angle glaucoma?

One interesting fact about open-angle glaucoma is that it doesn’t generally cause symptoms until you’ve already suffered significant vision loss. That means once you notice a vision problem, the glaucoma was already there for a long time. Typically, the first sign of open-angle glaucoma is loss of side vision (peripheral vision). If you realize that your side vision isn’t clear, contact our Copperas Cove eye doctor to book an eye exam as soon as possible. If you do have glaucoma, the earlier you start treatment – the more effective it is against further vision loss!

What are the signs of acute closed glaucoma?

People who have acute closed glaucoma (also called narrow-angle glaucoma) often experience extreme eye pain that strikes quickly. Common symptoms include severe throbbing eye pain, headaches on the same side as the painful eye, ocular redness, blurred vision, halos around lights, dilated pupil, and nausea or vomiting.

If you have these symptoms – visit an emergency room immediately. Acute closed glaucoma can damage the optic nerve fast, sometimes within a few hours, and when left untreated the vision loss can be permanent. You may need surgery to open up the drainage canal in your eye so intraocular fluid can drain and lower your eye pressure.

What’s normal tension glaucoma?

In normal tension glaucoma, damage occurs to the optic nerve even though intraocular pressure remains normal. This type of glaucoma is a bit of a mystery, as doctors aren’t certain what causes the damage. Just like open-angle glaucoma, this type develops slowly and doesn’t present symptoms until it has been there for a while. Treatment usually involves surgery.

What happens at the eye doctor?

When you visit Cove Eyecare for glaucoma testing in Copperas Cove, our eye doctor will perform several tests. We’ll measure the pressure in your eye, test your peripheral vision, and use magnification to inspect your optic nerve for any signs of a problem. If you do indeed have glaucoma, the typical frontline treatment involves taking eye drops or pills to manage pressure levels. If medicine doesn’t work sufficiently, you may require laser surgery for glaucoma.

Remember, even if treatment is successful at lowering the fluid pressure in your eye, it’s not a cure for glaucoma. Treatment slows down or stops the progression of the eye disease, but you’ll need to return to our Copperas Cove, Texas, eye care clinic for regular eye exams to monitor the health of your vision.

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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Lenses for Digital Defense in Copperas Cove, Texas

Protect your vision & relieve the stress of screen time on your eyes

Smartphone, computer, or tablet – it doesn’t make a difference which digital device you spend hours gazing at, all screens can take a toll on your eyes. As a result, you may experience the painful symptoms of digital eye strain. Additionally, all digital displays emit artificial blue light, which can be hazardous to the long-term health of your eyes.

To protect your vision from the damaging effects of our contemporary, computer-dependent lifestyle, look into lenses that have a built-in digital defense system. Visit our eye doctor in Copperas Cove, Texas, to learn more about the various types of protective lenses and computer glasses made by Essilor.


These improved single vision lenses are anti-stress – giving you crisper vision than regular single vision lenses. They’re ideal for reducing eye strain and can be crafted in all prescriptions – or as plano lenses for people who don’t need vision correction but still want the relaxing benefits of computer glasses.

Eyezen lenses are custom-made to fit the way you view the world, alleviating the eye strain caused by looking at digital screens held up close. With the aid of the advanced technology Smart Blue Filter™, your exposure to dangerous blue light is decreased. Filtering out the blue-violet light helps to keep your eyes feeling comfortable even after hours of digital viewing.

Crizal Sapphire 360˚ UV lenses

These anti-reflective lenses eliminate glare, helping you maintain focus with visual clarity and comfort. They feature built-in transparent technology that uses angles to diminish reflections from all directions, including for when you’re driving at night. Crizal Sapphire lenses also have enhanced UV protection with E-SPF 35 – the highest possible level of overall protection in an eyeglasses lens.

Essential Blue Series

This new line of digital defense eyewear offers more than 3x protection against hazardous blue light than a regular clear lens, helping to safeguard your eyes from disease in the future. If that’s not enough, they also provide superior protection with complete transparency – no yellow tint is visible in the lenses, enhancing the aesthetics.

Our eye doctor in Copperas Cove, Texas, is dedicated to providing every patient with the best possible vision. To reach that goal, we focus on three eye care essentials: your visual clarity for all daily tasks, supreme visual comfort, and long-lasting eye health! It’s critical to protect your eyes from the risks of computer vision – visit Cove Eyecare to be fit with the most appropriate digital defense lenses for your needs.

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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Is School Work Causing Computer Vision Syndrome in Your Child?

Eye health tips for students from our Copperas Cove eye doctor

The start of fall means back-to-school for kids of all ages – and our team at Cove Eyecare wishes everyone a smooth and successful return to the classroom!

When your child enters school after a summer of outdoor fun, many of the summer’s vision hazards are left behind. Yet, that doesn’t mean all eye health risks are eliminated! Nowadays, the majority of learning is computer based – exposing students’ eyes to the pain and dangers of blue light and computer vision syndrome. Fortunately, a variety of helpful devices and smartphone apps are available to block blue light and keep your child’s vision safe and comfortable.

To help you safeguard your child’s vision for the upcoming semesters and the long term of life, our Copperas Cove optometrist explains all about computer vision syndrome and how to prevent it.

Symptoms of computer vision syndrome

It’s smart to familiarize yourself with the signs of computer vision syndrome. If your child complains about any of these common symptoms, you can help prevent any lasting vision damage by booking an eye exam with our Copperas Cove eye doctor near you:

  • Eye irritation and redness
  • Neck, shoulder and back pain
  • Blurry vision
  • Dry eyes, due to reduced blinking
  • Headaches

Basics of blue light

Students spend endless hours in front of digital screens, be it a computer monitor, tablet, or smartphone. There is homework to be done, research to be conducted, texting with friends, and movies and gaming during downtime. All of this screen time exposes your child’s eyes to blue light.

Many research studies have demonstrated that flickering blue light – the shortest, highest-energy wavelength of visible light – can lead to tired eyes, headaches, and blurry vision. Additionally, blue light can disrupt the sleep/wake cycle, causing sleep deprivation and all the physical and mental health problems associated with it. As for your child’s future eye health, blue light may also be linked to the later development of macular degeneration and retinal damage.

How to avoid computer vision syndrome

Our Copperas Cove eye doctor shares the following ways to block blue light and protect against computer vision syndrome:

  • Computer glasses, eyeglasses lenses treated with a blue-light blocking coating, and contact lenses with built-in blue light protection are all effective ways to optimize visual comfort when working in front of a screen. These optics reduce eye strain and prevent hazardous blue-light radiation from entering the eyes.
  • Practice the 20-20-20 rule; pause every 20 minutes to gaze at an object that’s 20 feet away for 20 seconds. This simple behavior gives eyes a chance to rest from the intensity of the computer or smartphone screen, preventing eye fatigue.
  • Prescription glasses can be helpful when using a computer for long periods – even for students who don’t generally need prescription eyewear. A weak prescription can take the stress off of your child’s eyes, decreasing fatigue and increasing their ability to concentrate. Our Copperas Cove optometrist will perform a personalized eye exam to determine the most suitable prescription.
  • Moisturize vision with eye drops. One of the most common symptoms of computer vision syndrome is dry eyes, namely because people forget to blink frequently enough. Equip your child with a bottle of preservative-free artificial tears eye drops (available over the counter) and remind them to blink!
  • Blue light filters can be installed on a computer, smartphone, and all digital screens to minimize exposure to blue. A range of helpful free apps are also available for download.
  • Limit screen time for your child each day, or encourage breaks at least once an hour. Typically, the degree of discomfort from computer vision syndrome is in direct proportion with the amount of time your child spends viewing digital screens.
  • Set the proper screen distance. Younger children (elementary school) should view their computer at a half-arm’s length away from their eyes, just below eye level. Kids in middle school and high school should sit about 20 – 28 inches from the screen, with the top of the screen at eye level.

For additional info, book a consultation and eye exam at Cove Eyecare

When you and your child meet with our Copperas Cove eye doctor, we’ll ask questions about your child’s school and study habits to provide customized recommendations on the most effective ways to stay safe from computer vision syndrome and blue light. Our optometrist stays up-to-date with the latest optic technologies and methods to prevent painful vision and eye health damage from using a computer, so you can depend on us for contemporary, progressive treatment.

Stop squinting – Contact Lens Sunglasses Exist!

Sunglasses have always been your go-to for shading your eyes to stop squinting in the sun, but they’re not always the most convenient accessory. They fog up and slip down your nose when you work up a sweat, and need to be wiped off when you’re hit by water spray at the beach. But what’s the alternative? Is there another way to protect your eyes from UV rays and soothe your vision from the blinding Copperas Cove light?

Our Cove Eyecare eye doctors are pleased to offer a revolutionary solution – the new ACUVUE® OASYS with Transitions™ Light Intelligent Technology™ contact lenses. These contact lenses that can act like sunglasses were given FDA approval in April 2018. And they were also awarded to be one of TIME’s Best Inventions of 2018.

Now that we’ve caught your eye with this hot new tech, read on for more info about Acuvue’s contact lenses sunglasses from your favorite Copperas Cove, Texas optometrists’ office.

Smart & Dynamic Contact Lenses

ACUVUE® OASYS with Transitions™ Light Intelligent Technology™ are the first contacts to be developed that “read” the light conditions in your environment and adapt to enhance your vision. These lenses use photochromic technology that was designed in partnership with Transitions™, the leading manufacturer of photochromic eyeglasses lenses. The contacts incorporate a special additive that darkens automatically when exposed to light.

When exposed to outdoor UV and/or blue light from digital devices, these contacts react quickly. And because they respond “intelligently” to changing light conditions outdoors, the lenses do not typically remain in the darkest state the whole time you’re outside. So when you’re on an open stretch of beach, they’re not the same as when you’re standing under the shade of a wide awning. The effects on the appearance of your eyes is minimal, and when you come indoors, they fade back to clear within 60 seconds.

Sharper, Safer Vision – All Day Long

Surveys estimate that 94% of all consumers compensate for bright light conditions by squinting, dimming indoor lights, reducing screen brightness, or shading their eyes. ACUVUE® OASYS with Transitions™ Light Intelligent Technology™ filter indoor and outdoor light, including blue light rays that threaten your eye health. At night, these contact lenses sunglasses are also useful, as they reduce haloes and starburst. Your vision will improve during all hours of the day.

See the Benefits of Contact Lenses Sunglasses

  • Experience the comfort and convenience of going frame-free – while still safeguarding your vision
  • Highest level of UV protection in a contact lens
  • When you go into a darker environment, these contacts help your vision recover from bright light up to 5 seconds faster than normal
  • Ultimate gain, with only a minimal change to the appearance of your eyes and face
  • Crisp nighttime vision, with no disturbing haloes or starbursts
  • Soothing vision all day long, without bothersome glare

Visit our Copperas Cove, Texas, eye doctor to try ACUVUE® OASYS with Transitions™

We’re thrilled to offer these breakthrough contacts at Cove Eyecare! Our eye doctors would like to point out that while these contact lenses sunglasses are truly remarkable, we don’t recommend that you use them to replace your sunglasses all of the time.

While they offer exceptional UV protection to the areas they cover, contact lenses still leave other parts of your eyes and the surrounding ocular tissue naked to UV light. Sunglasses cover a wider area and therefore give additional protection. In addition, car windshields block close to 100% of UV light, so your ACUVUE® OASYS with Transitions™ won’t darken when you’re behind the wheel. To solve that problem, they can easily be worn under non-prescription sunglasses. So when you visit Cove Eyecare for your contact lenses fitting, check out our nonprescription sunglasses collection too!

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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