Make Getting an Eye Exam Your New Year’s Resolution

Woman in hoodie wearing glasses and playing with sparkler.

When New Year’s rolls around, most people make resolutions to focus on their health. This is a good idea, but you may be making the wrong resolution. If you’re focusing on losing weight or exercising more in the New Year, you may be overlooking a very important part of your health, and that is your vision. This year, in addition to the normal resolutions to get a little trimmer, consider making a resolution to protect your vision by scheduling a routine eye exam.

Screen for Diseases & Prevent Vision Loss

Why should you schedule a routine eye exam in the new year? An eye exam does much more than check your glasses prescription. It helps screen against disease and disorders that could put your vision and your overall health at risk.

One of these is glaucoma. Glaucoma has few symptoms in its early stages, but once it causes vision loss, the results are permanent. This is the second leading causing of blindness around the globe, and the best way to prevent it is to have your routine screening. If caught early, glaucoma’s effects can be reduced, helping to preserve your vision.

Though glaucoma is the most common problem that leads to vision loss, it is just one in a long list of potential diseases that could rob you of your vision. Many of these have few symptoms early on, and some can be treated if detected early. If you want to protect your vision, you need to start with your eye exam.

Protect Overall Health With Vision Screenings

Not only does your vision screening test for diseases that could cause you to lose your vision, but it also screens for vision problems that can be connected to other health problems, like hypertension and diabetes. Sometimes, the eye doctor is the first one to notice these problems, giving you the chance to get help from your medical doctor for these serious health concerns. By keeping your eye exam this year, you may get insight into things you can do to protect your overall health.

Schedule Your Eye Exam Today

If you want to schedule your eye exam for the new year, Visionary Eye Doctors is here to help. We offer eye exams to patients throughout Maryland and Washington, DC. Our eye doctors are passionate about helping you protect your health, and this starts with routine eye exams.

Visit our Maryland or DC offices to have your eye exam. Schedule it now by calling 301-896-0890. You can also contact us online for more information about our vision services. With the help of Visionary Eye Doctors, you can take the next step in protecting your vision, and your health, with routine eye examinations.

Preventing Dry Eyes in Winter

Portrait of cheerful mom with siblings. Noel morning gathering. Grey-haired cheerful grandparents, grandchildren, sister, brother, son, daughter, relatives at house feast, vacation

When you think of winter, what comes to mind? Snow? Holidays? If you’re one of the millions of Americans suffering from dry eye syndrome, then chances are you think of that itchy, scratchy, uncomfortable feeling that comes along with the dryness of winter. While dry eye syndrome can be a complex issue requiring a mixture of treatment options, there are still a few things you can do to combat dry and uncomfortable eyes this winter season.

Tips to Relieve Dry Eyes

Eye Drops

There are a number of over-the-counter eye drops you can utilize to keep your eyes from drying out this winter. From your run-of-the-mill artificial tears to overnight eye gel, the options are nearly endless. While it might take a little trial and error to find the eye drops that work for you, one kind we do suggest avoiding is redness eliminating. These eye drops work by temporarily constricting blood vessels, thus making your eyes appear whiter. These types of eye drops can just cause further irritation in your eyes.

Warm Compresses

This technique not only helps with dry eyes, but can also prove to be a good winding down activity at the end of a busy day! Simply dampen a washcloth with warm – not hot – water and rest it on your eyes before bed.

Humidifiers

If your eyes are already prone to dryness, having dry air in your home is only going to make this worse. Turn to your trusty humidifier to keep the air in your bedroom full of moisture during the night. Having moisture in the air will help prevent your eyes from drying out during the night and make opening your eyes in the morning a little easier.

Sunglasses

Besides the sun, sunglasses can help protect your eyes from other elements as well. Keep harsh temperatures and strong winds out of your eyes by wearing sunglasses outside during the winter. Keep a few pairs in various locations so that you’re always prepared.

Prescription Treatments

If all else fails, turn to your trusted eye care professional for prescription treatments that can help relieve your dry eye symptoms. Visionary Eye Doctors’ EyeDry Center of Excellence is specifically focused on helping patients find relief. We create multifaceted treatment plans that include both prescription treatments and at-home remedies.

This winter, don’t just suffer through dry eyes. Test out a few or all of the suggestions above to seek relief from dry, scratchy eyes. And, if you’d like to schedule an appointment with one of our dry eye experts, give us a call at 301-896-0890.

Happy 4th of July and what you need to know to keep you and your eyes safe!

Keep an eye out, firework-related eye injuries in the U.S. have doubled!

It’s almost the 4th of July and time to fire up the barbie, enjoy some cold drinks, and make sure your eyes are protected from the UV rays of the sun during the day and the fireworks that are sure to be part of your celebration that night.

While most of us love the fireworks with the bright lights, colorful sparks and huge sounds that go BOOM, please keep in mind that fireworks are still explosives. The statistics surrounding fireworks-related eye injuries are alarming. In 2017 alone, emergency rooms across the country treated an estimated 12,900 injuries from fireworks, and nearly 2000 of those were eye injuries. Over a third of these injuries were sustained by children under the age of 15, often because of sparklers or bottle rockets.

To help prevent these injuries, here are four myths about consumer fireworks risk:

  1. Small doesn’t equal safe. A common perpetrator of fireworks injuries is one that is often handed to small children — the popular sparkler. Many people mistakenly believe sparklers are harmless due to their size. However, they can reach temperatures of up to 2,000 degrees — hot enough to melt gold. Yes, melt gold!
  2. Even though it looks like a dud, it may not act like one. Injury and serious eye trauma can occur when people mistakenly think that a firework is no longer active or hot. Never touch unexploded fireworks and you may want to call your local fire or police department to properly handle it.
  3. Just because you’re not lighting or throwing it doesn’t mean you’re out of the firing line. An international study of fireworks-related eye injuries showed that nearly half of the people injured by fireworks are bystanders. The research also found that one in six of these injuries caused severe vision loss.
  4. The holiday can be complete without using consumer fireworks.  While legal in many states, they can be extremely dangerous and can cause significant injury, one of the more common injuries is to your eyes. Best to leave the lighting of fireworks to the professionals.

Please see the below safety tips for a safe and happy 4th:

  • Never let children play with any type of firework, including sparklers. They are the number one cause of fireworks injuries.
  • People who handle fireworks and all bystanders should wear protective eyewear that meets the parameters set by the American National Standards Institute. Avoid carrying fireworks in your pocket.  The friction could actually set them off, and that wouldn’t be pleasant.
  • Never use fireworks while impaired by drugs or alcohol
  • Keep a bucket of water nearby, just in case if lighting fireworks.
  • Keep an eye on your pets.  If your pooch isn’t cowering indoors, make sure he’s not in the line of fire either.
  • When viewing a professional firework display, view fireworks from at least 500 feet away and respect all safety barriers.

If you or a friend or family member experience a fireworks-related eye injury:

  • Seek medical attention immediately.
  • Avoid rubbing or rinsing the eyes or applying pressure.
  • Do not remove any object from the eye, apply ointments or take any pain medication before seeking medical help.

We wish you a wonderful and safe 4th of July holiday! VED is closed on the 4th and will open again on July 5th with regular hours. We hope this information was helpful to you and If you need some fashionable sunglasses or safety glasses – you know where to find us. Happy 4th!

How to find your perfect eye glasses choice

When trying on glasses, do you struggle to know which glasses may work best on you? We have some tips which may help and once you know which shape your face most closely resembles, then you can start narrowing down glasses to make your decisions easier.

Contrast your face shape 

Choose eyeglasses by determining your face shape. There are seven basic face shapes, including oval, base-up or base-down triangle, oblong, square, diamond, and round, as seen in the photo to the left. Keep in mind, eye glasses  should contrast your face shape but be in scale with your face size. Find your face shape in this image above and try out our recommended frames:

  • Oval: Frames that suit an oval face have a strong bridge, are wider than the broadest part of the face and are geometric in shape. Frames to Avoid: Eyeglasses that are overlarge and cover up more than half of your face will throw off the natural balance and symmetry of the oval face.
  • Heart shaped, Base-up triangle: Frames that balance the width of the forehead with the narrowness of the chin are ideal. Eyeglasses with low-set temples and bottom heavy frame lines will add width to that narrower part of your face. Round eyeglasses or square eyeglasses with curved edges will help draw attention away from a broad, high forehead. Frames to Avoid: Steer clear of any style or color of frames that draws attention to the forehead. This includes frames with decorative temples or embellished tops.
  • Oblong: frames with more depth than width. Frames to Avoid: Narrow and rectangular shapes will make your face appear longer, so steer clear.
  • Square: Eyeglasses that soften the angularity and sit high on the bridge of the nose look best on square faces. Oval or round eyeglasses will balance and add a thinner appearance to the angles of a square face. Frames to Avoid: Angular and boxy eyeglass frames will sharpen and draw attention to your angular features, making a square face appear bulky.
  • Diamond: Play up a narrow forehead and chin with eyeglass frames what sweep up or are wider than the cheekbones, such as cat eye glasses and oval frames. These frames will accentuate your cheekbones and delicate features. Frames to Avoid: Boxy and narrow frames will accentuate the width of your cheeks, drawing attention to your narrow features rather than enhancing them.
  • Round: Eyeglass frames that are square or rectangular tend to be wider than a round face. This quality can enhance your face by making it appear slimmer and longer, adding balance to your round features. Frames to Avoid: Rimless frames, round frames and small frames will accentuate the roundness, making your round face look even rounder.
  • Base-down triangle: can easily be identified by the cheek and chin areas being wide and the forehead being narrow. Like the diamond face shape, with a base-down triangle, you want to try to bring attention back towards the upper part of your face to balance out your features. Try cat-eye shaped frames, or semi-rimless. Also, frames that are heavily decorated and detailed on the top half would complement this face shape. Frames to Avoid: Frames that have a lighter upper rim, or darker lower rim because these attributes accentuate the wider lower portion of the face and will bring attention to the widest lower jaw line
  • Highlight your features

    • Pick your best or favorite feature and pick a frame to highlight it.
    • Some features to consider highlighting would be your eyes, hair, skin color, and face shape. For example, if you have blue eyes, try a blue or blue gray frame to match and highlight your eye color.
  • Match or complement colors

    • Your skin, eyes, and hair work together to create your overall coloring. Everyone has either a cool (blue or pink undertones) or a warm (yellow or orange undertones) overall color. Try a frame from our color list below to complement your coloring.
    • Warm coloring: Stay away from contrasting colors such as pastels. White and black frames may tend not to be flattering either. Instead, the best frame colors for you are light tortoise, browns shades, gold or honey, copper, red, beige, warm blue and olive green.
    • Cool coloring: Avoid colors that wash you out and instead reach for frames that are silver, black, dark tortoise, pink, purple, blue, rose-brown, mauve and gray.
  • Find the perfect size

    • Try on multiple pairs to see what size fits your face shape best.
    • If the frames are too small your peripheral vision will be limited and could potentially feel tight on the head. The frames should not pinch your nose, leave red marks, slide down your nose, or easily slip off your head. The tightness around your ears can be adjusted to get the perfect fit.  
  • Fit your frames to your lifestyle

    • Make sure your frames will work for every part of your life and will be a representation of you and your personality.
    • Pick frames to match your unique lifestyle and hobbies. Consider your common activities when choosing frames. For example, if you are more active you may want a pair of sports eyewear or a wraparound band. If you spend a lot of time on the computer, you may want eyeglasses with a tinted lens.
  • Lifestyle Lens Specialty Coatings – ZEISS DuraVision Blue Protect and ZEISS DuraVision DriveSafe 

    • Blue Protect blocks harmful computer, smartphone, tablet and etc rays from harming your eyes, releives eye strain and helps in visio clarity.
    • DriveSafe Lens provides better vision in low-light conditions for safer and more comfortable driving, reduces glare at night from oncoming cars or street lights, provides up to 43% larger mid-distance zone for easier focus switching between dashboard and mirrors.
  • Are weight and material important to you?

  1. Frames are most commonly made of plastic, metal, or a combination of materials. This combination determines the longevity, weight, and average cost of a frame.

Key Features:

  • Stainless steel and titanium are long lasting
  • Metal frames often have adjustable nose pads
  • Metal frames can come in hypoallergenic materials
  • Plastic frames tend to be lighter
  • Plastic frames typically need less maintenance than metal frames
  • Flexible hinges allow the “arms” to bend more than regular hinges

Our opticians can help you in selecting the perfect pair and with our WOW gurantee – it’s great to shop local and small!

Early Detection is Key with Glaucoma

January is National Glaucoma Awareness Month and the perfect time to spread information and awareness about this sight-stealing disease.  More than 3 million people in the United States suffer from glaucoma and that number will continue to increase significantly. This symptomless disease is not preventable and as much as 40% of vision can be lost without a person noticing.

Glaucoma is the leading cause of irreversible blindness. Moreover, among African American and Latino populations, glaucoma is more prevalent. Glaucoma is 6 to 8 times more common in African Americans than Caucasians.

Early detection. Our comprehensive eye exams will include tests for glaucoma, including a simple and painless procedure that measures the internal pressure of your eye. During the exam, your doctor will also examine the health of the optic nerve and measure your field of vision.

Thandeka Myeni, MD, MPHOur glaucoma specialist, Thandeka Myeni, MD, MPH is board- certified, fellowship-trained in both glaucoma and cataract and refractive surgery and utilizes the latest in diagnosis, treatment and surgical options.

The earlier glaucoma is detected, the easier it is to treat!

What are Risk Factors for Glaucoma?

Those at higher risk include people of African, Asian, and Hispanic descent. Other high-risk groups include: people over 60, family members of those already diagnosed, diabetics, and people who are severely nearsighted. Regular eye exams are especially important for those at higher risk for glaucoma, and may help to prevent unnecessary vision loss.

What causes glaucoma?

Glaucoma is often hereditary but it can also be caused by medications, prior eye surgeries, or an injury to the eye. The most common type of glaucoma is called open angle glaucoma. The first symptoms of this condition are often patchy blind spots in your peripheral vision. In an advanced stage of this type of glaucoma, you might experience tunnel vision. A less common form of the disease called, acute angle-closure glaucoma, often has a more rapid onset. You should seek immediate medical care if you experiencing a combination of some of the following symptoms:

  • Severe headache
  • Eye pain
  • Nausea/vomiting
  • Blurred vision
  • Haloes around lights
  • Eye redness

With a diagnosis of glaucoma, it’s best to follow up with an ophthalmologist who specializes in glaucoma at regular intervals to determine the best course of treatment and ensure that your treatments are working effectively. All glaucoma treatments are aimed at protecting the patient from further, irreversible vision loss. Daily eye drops that help reduce the pressure in your eye are typically the first line of treatment followed by laser treatments and incisional surgical procedures.

While there is no cure for glaucoma, these treatments can slow its progression and prevent further vision loss to reduce the likelihood of significant visual disability resulting from the disease over a patient’s lifetime. If you are due for a glaucoma screening, make a resolution to reach out and schedule an appointment with Dr. Thandeka Myeni, MD, MPH at 301-896-0890 or request to schedule online.

 

Can a Pterygium | Carnosidad Grow Back After Removal?

Pterygium, also known as “surfer’s eye,” is a non-cancerous thickening of the outer coating (conjunctiva) of the eye that grows onto the cornea. Normally the conjunctiva is a thin clear membrane over the ‘whites’ of the eye (sclera) and extends to the inner surface of the eyelids.

In most cases, pterygium must be surgically removed to relieve discomfort and restore the cosmetic appearance to the eye. Pterygium removal is a safe procedure and can be performed in our state-of-the-art office surgical suite.

How can you lower the chance of recurrence or regrowth?

The best way to lower the chance of recurrence or regrowth of a pterygium is to ensure you choose the best surgeon based on his or her experience and one that specializes in that procedure, has developed and continually improving a surgical technique, and has performed a large volume or large number of surgeries. When surgeons perform certain procedures with regularity and they specialize in those procedures, they continually improve and perfect their technique and are better equipped to deal with any complication.

Why Pterygium | Carnosidad Regrowth Occurs

Recurrence rates vary widely among current studies on pterygium regrowth. While some studies have reported rates as high as almost 40 percent, others report rates as low as 5 percent. Other studies have found that recurrence is higher among individuals who had their pterygium removed during the summer months, possibly because overexposure to the sun has been linked to pterygium development. Wearing polarized sunglasses is a must. Other factors that can increase the risk of recurrence include dusty and windy conditions.

One of the Lowest Documented Recurrence Rates in the World – The EyeWhite Institute at Visionary Eye Doctors

EyeWhite

Dr. J. Alberto Martinez, Founder of Visionary Eye Doctors and one of the most sought after Pterygium surgeons in the world, has many years of collective experience, training and has developed The ASAP™ (Advanced Sutureless Amniotic Membrane Pterygiectomy procedure – providing a superior cosmetic outcome. Dr. Martinez, founder of The EyeWhite Pterygium and Pinguecula Research Institute has conducted numerous clinical research studies and has published in prestigious ophthalmology journals. He is on the cutting edge of the latest and most advanced surgical methods to reduce the possibility of recurrence, including using a special no stich, amniotic membrane technique.

Studies have shown this technique can lower pterygium recurrence rate to less than 5 percent. Dr. Martinez has one of the lowest recurrence rates in the world – less than 0.1%. Following your procedure, our team will schedule follow-up appointments with you to monitor your progress. We will also make recommendations on medications or steps you can take to minimize the chances of recurrence.

To learn more about the ASAP™ procedure, please click here.

LEARN MORE FROM VISIONARY EYE DOCTORS

To learn more about pterygium surgery or to schedule a FREE consultation, please request to schedule a surgical consult online today here, or call 301.896.0890 and a member of our team will gladly assist you.

How not to let your Halloween Contact Lenses turn your eyes into a permanent fright!

Its time to start thinking about enhancing your Halloween costume and prescription costume contact lenses are the perfect finishing touch to any spectacular costume!  If you are considering using costume contact lenses as part of your Halloween get-up this season, make sure you don’t purchase them from a gas station, online store, nail salon or other unlicensed dealer—or you and your eyes could be in for a real scare.

We’ve seen many cases during past Halloween seasons, where people who wore illegal costume OTC lenses ended up with an eye injury or inflammation. One of the more serious risks people face when wearing costume OTC lenses is developing a corneal ulcer. This happens when a bacterial infection occurs under the lens and can cause pain, irritation, discomfort and possible blindness.

OTC lenses can also cause corneal abrasions and conjunctivitis

This occurs when the lenses injure or scratch the eyes. If they are not tailored to a person’s eyes, the lenses may scratch or cause an infection, particularly if they are not kept clean with the correct solution or by not fitting properly and/or people don’t receive or follow proper instructions on how to insert, remove and sterilize lenses.

According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO), the potential risks associated with non-prescription, decorative lenses include:

  • Corneal ulcer
  • Corneal abrasions
  • Conjunctivitis (pink eye)
  • Allergic reactions like itchy, inflamed, watery red eyes that doesn’t go away with increased discomfort
  • Infection
  • Decreased vision or light sensitivity
  • Blindness

Adolescents and young adults are the most common groups affected by the risks associated with some decorative contact lenses, according to the FDA. Moreover, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) states that when decorative contact lenses are sold without a prescription and without proper fitting and education about wear and care from an eye-care professional, the potential for permanent eye damage–including blindness increases.

Cosmetic contact lenses are easy to find and are often sold illegally without a prescription online, novelty shops, barber shops, beauty salons, mall kiosks, Halloween costume stores, convenience stores and even gas stations. Because contacts are a medical device that is regulated by the FDA, it is illegal to sell contacts without a prescription and any supplier who doesn’t require a prescription is breaking the law.

Be Safe – use costume OTC lenses only with a prescripiton by your eye doctor

Our Optometrists can fit and prescribe safe, decorative costume lenses for you and we have a great selection

Your doctor will be sure that the decorative lenses that are prescribed for you are FDA approved for use on the eye and that the lenses fit your eyes appropriately. Once you have the prescription for your decorative lenses and you’ve bought them, we will be sure to show you to how to properly insert and care for safe wearing.

Call us about our costume lenses and be sure to order by October 18th to be in time for Halloween!

 

 

Dr. Martinez’s Visionary Foundation – Healing Hands for the Blind

2018 Impact Statement Honduras Surgical Eye Mission

August 23 – 28, 2018

A very successful surgical mission was carried out by Visionary Foundation and Alberto Martinez, MD from August 23 to August 28, 2018 at “Fundación de Servicios Medicos Voluntarios” (FSMV) Hospital Leonardo Martinez, San Pedro Sula, Honduras.

FSMV, a charity clinic led by Marcos Fajardo, MD, serves the impoverished population of San Pedro Sula. Dr. Fajardo provided the logistic support and infrastructure that allowed us to provide free surgical eye care. The patients who received surgery were pre-screened by Dr. Fajardo. Pre-surgical screening consisted of a complete eye exam, diagnosis and plan. Once the need for surgery was determined, appropriate testing such as axial eye length measurement, corneal topography and B-Scan ultra-sonography were performed.

This year, Dr. Martinez spent time training local ophthalmologist Edgar Maldonado following the principle of “When you give a fish to a man, you feed him for a day. When you teach him how to fish, you feed him for a lifetime”. The principal focus of training was clinical cornea, cataract and corneal transplant surgeries.

A total of 54 eye surgeries were performed:

  • 11 corneal transplants (1 Penetrating, 7 Partial or DSAEK, and 3 DMEK)
  • 40 cataract surgeries (32 phaco + 8 extra capsular)
  • Multiple clinical consultations and examinations of general ophthalmology, cornea and external eye diseases and pre and post op evaluations

Patients were seen on their first postoperative day.  Cornea patients were seen again three days later, at the end of the surgical mission. All medications needed for postoperative care were provided for free.  Postoperative care of these transplants will continue via telemedicine with the by using the app WhatsApp, by means of high quality photography and descriptions.

 

 

Surgical Complications:

  • 1 DSAEK successfully re-bubbled

We plan to return in August 2019, this time with 2 surgeons. One surgeon may focus exclusively on transplants the other on cataract surgery. Thus, we hope to have a larger surgical impact. One of the most difficult parts of the mission was the heart wrenching process of turning down many people who direly needed a corneal transplant because we did not have enough cornea tissue.

We are thankful to the numerous individuals and organizations that helped us with the success of this mission:

  • Alcon Laboratories
  • SightLife Tissue Bank
  • Johnson & Johnson Surgical Vision, Inc
  • New World Medical
  • Allergan
  • Vanessa Lemus
  • Dan Lawson and the staff and physicians at Palisades Eye Surgery Center
  • Loretta Scrub Technician and the OR staff at the Washington Hospital Center
  • Toufic Melki
  • Kevin Smith
  • Berny Kreutz

In addition to the surgical mission, Anna Pigotti with the support of Visionary Foundation provided funds to help maintain the infrastructure of the facility where 80+ girls of all ages reside at the orphanage “Hogar San Jose” directed by Sister Thelma. Future plans in this area include visiting the orphanage in October 2019 and providing cash donations to cover a few of the many basic needs.

Once again, thank you for your generous help. You have literally shone light into the life of our fellow human beings.

May your contribution become a light of kindness filling your heart with joy!

Signs that your child may have a vision issue and why annual exams are so important

Even the most gifted students will struggle academically if they have trouble seeing the blackboard or focusing on a book.

It is estimated that over 60% of children with learning difficulties have an undetected vision problem. 80% of information kids receive in the classroom is presented visually and vision can affect sports performance, too – hand-eye coordination, depth perception and eye tracking ability. Healthy eyes and good vision are essential for your kid’s growth and development.

Often, vision issues are at the root of learning problems and behavioral issues and may unfortunately go unchecked and misdiagnosed. If your child is having trouble in school, you may want to start out with a comprehensive eye exam and see if there is a vision issue first with your child before pursuing other avenues.

It is common for children to think that their vision is normal and therefore they often won’t report it to parents or teachers. That is why it is even more important to know what signs to look for:

Vision Signs

  • Squinting or blinking often
  • Eye rubbing
  • Tilting the head to the side
  • Covering one eye
  • One eye that turns out or in
  • Reporting double vision
  • Holding books or reading materials very close to the face

Behavioral Signs

  • Complaining of headaches or eye fatigue
  • Short attention span
  • Difficulty reading
  • Losing their place frequently when reading
  • Avoiding reading or any activity that requires close work
  • Problems with reading comprehension or recall
  • Behavioral issues that stem from frustration and/or boredom
  • Poor performance and achievement in school or athletics
  • Working twice as hard to achieve minimal performance in school

Often, parents and teachers think that a school vision screening is good enough to assess your child’s vision, so if that test comes back okay, they believe there is no vision problem. However,this may be far from the case. A school vision test usually only assesses visual acuity for distance vision or how far a child can see. Even a child with 20/20 vision can have significant vision problems that prevent them from seeing, reading and processing visual information.

We recommend all kids of school age have yearly comprehensive eye and vision exams to ensure any issues are addressed and taken care of as soon as possible. It’s also important to have an exam prior to entering kindergarten, as undetected lazy eye may be more complicated to treat past seven years of age.

Some of the issues our optometrist may look for, in addition to good visual acuity, are the ability to focus, eye teaming and tracking, visual perception, hand-eye coordination, depth perception and peripheral vision. They will also assess the health of the eye and look for any underlying conditions that may be impairing vision. Depending on the problem the eye doctor may prescribe eyeglasses, contact lenses or vision therapy to correct the issue.

During the school years a child’s eyes and vision continue to develop and change so it is important to continually check in on your child’s vision. If you have a family history of vision problems, follow-ups are even more important. Progressive conditions like progressive myopia, strabismus (crossed eyes), amblyopia (lazy eye) or astigmatism can be treated and monitored for changes with early treatment so it’s important to seek a doctor’s diagnosis as soon as signs or symptoms are present.

Add a comprehensive eye exam to your back to school to-do list. Our experienced, kid-friendly optometrists look forward to making sure your child has the best possible chances for success in school. And we know, kids will be kids. Our WOW Guarantee worry free protection plan was made with that in mind. Check out our Back to School Specials!

Schedule your child’s eye exam today, 301.896.0908 or request to schedule online!

Risks of LASIK

get rid of glasses, LASIK eye surgery

LASIK allows you to experience life as you may have never known it: clear and hassle-free. You may pursue life with new confidence, enthusiasm and ease thanks to LASIK. The procedure takes just a few minutes, but its results can have a tremendous impact on a patient’s quality of life.

That said, LASIK is not for everyone. There are health and lifestyle considerations to take into account when making this important decision. Every surgical procedure – even one as common as LASIK – has its risks. Although most patients are very pleased with the results of their laser vision correction surgery, every patient should weigh the chance of experiencing complications against the potential benefits of the procedure.

The first step is to determine if you are a good candidate for vision correction surgery. Our Refractive surgeon, Dr. Alberto Martinez will perform a thorough diagnostic eye exam to determine your if LASIK Surgery is a good fit for you.

He will evaluate:

  • The shape and thickness of your cornea
  • Your refractive errors and pupil size
  • The moistness of your eyes (to check for dry eye syndrome)
  • Your general health and medical history
  • Any medications you are taking

If you are not a good candidate for LASIK, no worries there are LASIK Alternatives, including PRK, ICLs, Clear Lens Exchange, click here for more info.

Some of the risks and complications of LASIK to be aware of include:

  • Mild, moderate or severe dry eye
  • Halos, glare, and starbursts
  • Loss of vision

We cannot promise that you will never need contacts or glasses again – beware of anyone who makes such a promise – but LASIK can drastically decrease your dependence on these visual aids.

Additionally, the following patients should not have LASIK:

  • Those with collagen vascular disease
  • Those with autoimmune or immunodeficiency diseases
  • Patients with signs of keratoconus or abnormal corneal topography
  • Women who are pregnant or nursing
  • Patients who are taking the medications isotretinoin (Accutane™) or amiodarone hydrochloride (Cordarone™)

Choosing a skilled and experienced LASIK eye surgeon can help reduce these risks and enable you to achieve the best possible results from laser eye surgery. To schedule a consultation with Dr. Alberto Martinez and discuss if LASIK is right for you, contact Visionary Eye Doctors at 301-896-0890.