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Why Are Blue Eyes More Sensitive To Light?

Why Do Your Eyes Need Sun Protection?

Eyes of all colors need shielding from the sun’s harmful ultraviolet (UV) rays. Exposure to UV light can contribute to the formation of short-term and long-term eye conditions such as corneal sunburn and macular degeneration.

That’s why it’s so important to choose high-quality Sunwear with 100% UV blocking lenses and to throw on a sun hat for an added layer of protection.

UV protection is important for individuals of all ages—especially children—who are more susceptible than adults to the sun’s harmful rays and tend to spend more time outdoors. It is estimated that up to 80% of a person’s lifetime exposure to UV rays happens before the age of 18.

Why are Blue Eyes More Sensitive to Light?

Lighter-colored eyes like blue, hazel, and green have less of a pigment called ‘melanin’ than brown eyes do.

Melanin helps protect the retina from UV damage and blue light, putting those with blue eyes at a higher risk of developing UV-related eye damage.

If you have blue eyes, you may have experienced this first-hand. Bright light may be uncomfortable or you may want to reach for your shades as soon as you leave the house on a sunny day.

That’s why optometrists urge blue-eyed patients to be particularly vigilant about UV protection, so as to mitigate their chances of developing eye disease and other complications.

How We Can Help

Whether you have blue eyes or not, sunglasses are an important part of keeping your eyes healthy for a lifetime.

At Eyecare Boulevard, we’ll be happy to advise on the perfect high-quality and protective pair of sunglasses to suit your needs and personal style.

Eyecare Boulevard, your Oklahoma City eye doctor for eye exams and eye care

Alternatively, book an appointment online here CLICK FOR AN APPOINTMENT

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Should I wear sunglasses even when it’s not sunny outside?

Yes! You should wear your sunglasses whenever outdoors during the day, even on an overcast, winter day. UV light can pass through clouds and reflect off surfaces like car windows and pavement.

What type of sunglasses are the most suitable for blue eyes?

The most protective sunglasses are wraparound sunglasses that protect the eyes from every angle. You can also opt for photochromic lenses, which offer total UV protection but only become tinted when exposed to outdoor sunlight, and turn clear when you come indoors again. Your optometrist can help you choose the best lens and frame options for your needs and lifestyle.

Why Are Dilated Eye Exams So Important?

Eyecare Boulevard Dilated Eye Exam near you in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

Having your eyes dilated during an eye exam may seem like a nuisance. But when you consider the benefits of a dilated eye exam, the temporary blurred vision and sensitivity to light that typically follow are definitely worth it.

What Are Dilated Eye Exams?

At some point during a comprehensive eye exam, your optometrist will shine a bright light into your eyes to examine the back of your eye, called the retina. The problem is that bright light causes the size of the pupil’s opening to shrink, which makes it hard for the optometrist to see a large portion of the retina.

That’s why eye doctors apply special eye drops in each eye to keep the pupils open. A dilated pupil allows for a much more accurate assessment of your eye’s structures, including the focusing lens, blood vessels and tissues at the back of the eye called the retina, as well as the optic nerve and macula.

Dilating the eyes makes it easier for your optometrist to detect the following conditions and diseases:

It’s important to note that many of these conditions can develop without noticeable symptoms, until they cause vision loss at which point treatment may be more challenging, making dilated eye exams all the more crucial.

The Dilation Process

First, your eye doctor will apply eye drops to each eye to trigger dilation of the pupil. Your eyes should be fully dilated about 10-20 minutes later.

Your eyes will remain dilated for 4-6 hours, and during this time you may be sensitive to light. That’s because the larger pupil allows more light than usual to enter the eye. Many patients find it more comfortable to wear sunglasses until their eyes return to normal.

Reading and using a computer may be difficult with dilated eyes, and your vision may be blurred. Some patients report feeling a tightening sensation in their eyelids, or headaches.

Dilated eye exams are a crucial part of keeping your eyes healthy. To schedule your comprehensive eye exam, call our optometry practice today!

Eyecare Boulevard, your Oklahoma City eye doctor for eye exams and eye care

Alternatively, book an appointment online here CLICK FOR AN APPOINTMENT

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At what age should one have a dilated eye exam?

You should have your dilated eye exam no matter your age. Most eye doctors will dilate a new patient at their first exam regardless of age to get a baseline of their retinal health.

Will I be able to return to work after a dilated eye exam?

Everyone reacts differently, so it’s hard to tell. If your job requires you to focus on small print or detail, it may be challenging. Typing and writing may also be difficult with dilated pupils. To be on the safe side, book your appointment at the end of your work day, clear your schedule after your eye exam and only plan to do activities which aren’t visually demanding.

Why Does Bono Always Wear His Signature Shades?

Ask our optometrist in Oklahoma City how Do Sunglasses Help People With Glaucoma?

Ever wonder why rock superstar Bono wears sunglasses, even when indoors? It’s not due to his “look”, but rather is related to managing his glaucoma.

Ever wonder why Bono always wears shades, even when indoors? U2’s frontman doesn’t wear sunglasses simply as part of his image. Bono has had glaucoma, a build-up of pressure in the eyeball, which can damage the optic nerve and potentially lead to blindness if untreated—for over two decades now.

The real reason he wears his trademark shades is due to this progressive, sight-robbing eye disease, to protect his sensitive eyes from light and glare.

How Do Sunglasses Help People With Glaucoma?

People with glaucoma experience sensitivity to light (or photophobia) and glare, among other symptoms. When the sun is strong, those with this condition will be more affected by glare emanating from a variety of surfaces, like water, snow, sand or pavement, than the average person. Furthermore, certain glaucoma medications constrict the pupils, which can further contribute to acute sensitivity to glare and light, as well as redness and irritation.

That’s why people with glaucoma — and lots of people without glaucoma — feel best wearing sunglasses when outdoors on a sunny day, in a bright indoor space, or while driving in the early evening.

Here’s How You Can Protect Your Eyes

By wearing sunglasses that offer 100% UV protection, you can reduce your risk of developing sight robbing diseases, like cataracts and macular degeneration, and reduce glaucoma symptoms. Polarized lenses, in particular, can help with glare. With yearly comprehensive eye exams, early diagnosis and consistent treatment, you can prevent vision deterioration from glaucoma or similar sight-threatening eye diseases. Contact Eyecare Boulevard in Nichols Hills to book your eye doctor’s appointment today.

Book an eye exam at an eye clinic near you to learn more about your candidacy for contact lenses and which type is right for you.

Eyecare Boulevard, your Oklahoma City eye doctor for eye exams and eye care

Alternatively, book an appointment online here CLICK FOR AN APPOINTMENT

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Can glaucoma be cured?

While there is currently no cure for glaucoma, there are many effective treatment options available. Treatments that can help stop or slow the progression of glaucoma include eye drops, oral medications, as well as laser and surgical procedures.

How can glaucoma vision loss be prevented?

The best way to avoid glaucoma-related eyesight deterioration is to undergo regular eye exams, as glaucoma can be detected and treated even in its early stages, which can prevent significant vision loss or blindness. That’s why routine eye exams that include glaucoma testing are so important.

Diabetes and the Eye

Diabetes is a disease that affects the body’s ability to control blood sugar. Too much blood sugar in the body can affect many parts of the body, such as the eyes, heart, kidneys, and blood vessels. The Center of Disease Control (CDC) claims that 90% of vision loss from diabetes can be prevented. Therefore, it is critical that if you or a loved one has diabetes, that they come for an annual eye exam.

How does diabetes affect your sight? Uncontrolled blood sugar can make shifts in your glasses prescription, cause cataracts, cause diabetic retinopathy with or without macula edema, and possibly cause glaucoma. The endpoint is blindness if not monitored or controlled. If there are signs of diabetes in the eye, the severity of damage will determine whether you will be monitored more closely or referred to a retinal specialist.

You can expect the doctor will recommend dilation of the eyes with drops to get better views of the retina.

There is more to the eye than just glasses and contact lenses.

You may not know it, but when you see an optometrist or an ophthalmologist, we are not only measuring the prescription of your eyes, but we are also checking the health of your eyes. Many times, the health of the eyes tells us about your health too. There are a variety of eye diseases that are both silent but could cause harm to your vision over time. The following is just an overview of diseases that can be unnoticed.

  • Glaucoma- Glaucoma is a progressive eye disease that does not have any symptoms most of the time. A person with glaucoma will lose vision mostly peripherally. As eye care professionals, we take a look at risk factors, such as your eye pressures, family history, medical history, and the appearance of your optic nerves and retinal fiber layers to assess if you are at risk for glaucoma. Without a proper complete eye exam, you won’t be able to detect glaucoma. Additional testing is needed to determine the loss of vision, and treatments can include eye drops and possibly other surgical procedures to lower the pressure of the eyes.
  • Diabetes- If you have diabetes, it is recommended that you have a complete eye examination with dilation once a year to ensure you do not have diabetic retinopathy. Diabetes is one of the leading causes of blindness with greater risk when blood sugar is uncontrolled. Eat healthy, stay fit, and come see us for an annual eye examination.
  • Hypertension- High blood pressure can also be seen in the eyes. Many times, patients will come in for a routine check, only to find out their vessels have signs of hypertension that needs to be monitored by their PCP. If hypertension stays uncontrolled for awhile, there is risk of stroke and sometimes vision problems can also be seen.
  • Retinal holes, tears, or detachments- Having two eyes gives us depth perception but also two chances to see. If one eye is unable to see due to disease or a congenital anomaly, the brain may shut off the unclear vision and favor your mind to see through the good seeing eye. Because we have two eyes, eye diseases can also go unnoticed. A dilated eye exam or a retinal wide-view image map can help us detect these anomalies that may be unmatched by your own naked eye.

Come see us at Eyecare Boulevard. Dr. My Dinh is devoted to take care of your eyes, whether you have disease or if you need an annual check-up to make sure your eyes are healthy. We will check your glasses and/or contact lens prescription, too, to ensure you have obtain the healthiest and best vision possible.