Vancouver Optometrists

4466 West 10th Avenue
Call: 604-224-3937

Archive for November, 2013

Home Remedies for Common Eye Problems

Wednesday, November 27, 2013 @ 07:11 AM
Author: Amit Mathur

Home Remedies for Common Eye Problems

Surgery isn’t the only option for pain relief from eye problems. There are many home remedies for common eye problems, which are especially helpful to those who aren’t eligible for surgery or simply choose not to have it due to the risk factors.

One option is to treat the pain from eye problems with over-the-counter medicine. This can take one of the following forms:

  • Eye drops
  • Acetaminophen
  • Anti-inflammatory drugs
  • Ibuprofen
  • Aspirin

Another option is to make a homemade eye wash or tea tonic. While store bought solutions exist to wash the eyes, they do carry some side effects. Using natural products can provide the same benefits without the risk of side effects. This can include any number of natural ingredients that are thought to reduce pain, redness, and swelling:

  • A mixture of rose water and lime juice
  • Triphala, an herbal eye tonic
  • Soak guava leaves in warm water, wrap in a clean cloth and apply to the eyes
  • Boil chamomile flowers and Oregon grape root and apply to the eyes
  • Boil and cool raspberry leaves, soak onto a cotton ball, and apply
  • Soak almonds overnight. Eat the almonds the next morning with a warm glass of milk.

Though these remedies can be used to treat dry eyes, itching, redness, eye strain, and pink eye, they are not a replacement for treatment in more severe cases such as glaucoma, retinal detachment or age-related macular degeneration. Seek medical attention if symptoms are severe or include vision loss.

Glaucoma Symptoms Appear After Vision Loss

Friday, November 22, 2013 @ 07:11 AM
Author: Amit Mathur

Glaucoma Symptoms Appear After Vision Loss

Glaucoma involves optic nerve damage that worsens over time. It is caused by the buildup of fluid, which adds pressure that causes irreparable damage. It can result in blindness.

Glaucoma symptoms start as a loss of peripheral vision because it deteriorates before central vision loss. Once side vision loss occurs, vision loss has already taken place, but the other eye has been making up the difference. By the time symptoms appear, however, the glaucoma is already is in advanced stage. That’s why regular eye exams are so important as a way of practicing preventive eye care.

Other symptoms may occur, including:

  • Cloudy vision
  • Severe eye pain in either eye
  • Feeling nauseous
  • Having red eye
  • Experiencing a headache centralized over the eyebrow

Treatment of glaucoma depends on the severity of the disease. While an ophthalmologist can prescribe liquid eye drops to help relieve the pressure, surgery may be necessary to correct the problem. Though surgery is useful for improving the flow of fluid in the eye and getting rid of the pressure that causes the problem, it can’t repair vision once it’s lost.

Though infants can be affected by glaucoma, those most as risk are over 40 with a family history of the disease. Diabetes, nearsightedness, high blood pressure, eye injuries, and the use of steroids can increase the chances of getting glaucoma. Early detection is key for preserving eye sight and preventing more damage. A quick and painless test is recommended every 2-3 years to detect glaucoma.

Eyeball Licking: Hoax or Unhealthy New Trend

Sunday, November 17, 2013 @ 07:11 AM
Author: Amit Mathur


Eyeball licking, also known as oculolinctus or “worming,” is thought to be a new trend that began with a few kids in Japan. The discovery was reportedly made when a good portion of the class mysteriously had pink eye. Thanks to the other trend of posting anything unusual or strange on YouTube, the practice of eyeball licking has received a lot of attention.

Oddly enough, it’s used as a new way of expressing how much a person likes another person. It’s part of the initial dating process, especially among preteens. It’s comparable to a foot fetish or toe licking, the reason is that the cornea is sensitive and licking it causes a tingling sensation.

Eyeball licking poses some serious health issues though. Kids might not think much about getting a case of pink eye that clears up relatively quickly and doesn’t pose any long-term damage to the eye, but it can cause more than just pink eye. Other health problems that may arise due to eyeball licking include:

  • Sties
  • Scratching the lens
  • Eye herpes (like a cold sore virus)
  • Vision loss due to infections

Some claim that worming is just a hoax or an urban legend, and while that might be true, word has spread about the unusual practice and kids are curious about the practice. Regardless of whether the initial story is true or not, copycats are sure to turn up and they need to be aware of the risks of putting foreign bacteria in their eyes.

Eye Exercises Strengthen Vision

Tuesday, November 12, 2013 @ 07:11 AM
Author: Jason Lau


Vision problems can cause uncomfortable and irritating side effects. Sometimes they aren’t severe enough to warrant a surgery, such as headaches and eye strain. There is another option, however, to relieve the symptoms: eye exercises.

Eye exercises are good for those who have trouble focusing, need to regain muscle control after eye surgery, are cross-eyed, have a lazy eye, experience double vision, or have a drifting eye. Therapeutic exercises can restore muscle control in the eye, reduce blurred vision, control sensitivity to light, and reduce eye strain.

Some examples of simple eye exercises that can be done from home include:

  • Tightly close both eyes. Open and repeat.
  • Use hot and cold compresses against the eyes while performing a light massage over the eyelids.
  • Place several fingers over the eyelids and apply light pressure.
  • Change focus from an object that is nearby to one that is far away.
  • Roll eyes in one direction, then back the other way.
  • Move the eyes up and down, looking at the ceiling, then at the floor (without moving the head.)
  • Place palms over both eyes and hold for a few seconds to give the eyes a rest.

These eye exercises can be repeated several times a day to strengthen and protect the muscles. They are not helpful in all eye problems, however. There may be additional exercises available to assist with a specific eye problem as well. Get approval from an eye doctor before practicing at home.

Depression Linked to Vision Loss

Thursday, November 7, 2013 @ 07:11 AM
Author: Amit Mathur


Depression and vision loss are both common conditions in older adults. When they coexist, it makes both of them more difficult to treat. It is unclear whether vision loss is the cause of the depression or if the per-existing conditions worsens the situation when eyesight is impaired.

As much as one-third of adults with vision problems have been diagnosed with clinic depression, and that’s not entirely accurate because not everyone gets help when they feel depressed. The stigma against mental illness continues to hold people back from accepting the problem and asking for help.

Furthermore, a study by the National Institute of Health shows that 90% of those with vision loss are also depressed. The more severe of permanent the eye damage is, the more likely they are to feel depressed.

Signs of depression include:

  • Change in appetite
  • Poor mood
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Indecisiveness
  • A desire to be left alone
  • Feeling emotionally numb
  • Lack of interest or pleasure in everyday activities
  • Thoughts of suicide

Both depression and vision loss are treatable, but when they co-exist, the patient has a harder time talking about the issues and asking for support. Blindness or eye diseases may be their excuse for feeling depressed, so they don’t feel like the situation needs any attention.

It appears that the key to solving these issues when they occur together is for the ophthalmologist to intervene and suggest help for the patient suffering from depression. When help is given for both conditions the outlook is much better.