Make itchy dry eyes a thing of the pastDo your eyes ever feel dry and itchy? Do your eyes water all the time? Are your eyes sticky in the mornings? Are you always having to wipe your eyes? If you’ve answered yes to more than one of these questions the chances are you are suffering from dry eyes. Dry eye syndrome or dry eye disease is exactly what it says. For several reasons your eyes become dry and uncomfortable. A normal healthy eye blinks on average 22 times per minute. A blink is a mechanism designed to keep our eyes fresh and lubricated. The problem in winter is that we tend to bump up the heating and spend more time indoors. Often we spend more time on our computers or watching TV, both these activities have a negative effect upon our eyes. Central heating is drying and staring at a computer or TV screen reduces blinking. Dry eyes can be very uncomfortable, but it is a relatively easy condition to treat. Some treatments include lubricants or dry drops, sometimes we recommend a hot compress or eyelid massage.
We are what we eatDid you know that certain foods can help maintain proper hydration of your eyes. You might recall this advice from your childhood, “eating more carrots will help you see better.” Well, that’s not exactly true, but to ease the symptoms, you must have a daily intake of several key nutrients.
PotassiumPotassium is great for dry eyes because it is one of the important components that comprise your tear film. Low levels of potassium have been linked to damage to your tear film, and potassium is critical the maintenance of film thickness. To keep your potassium levels high, eat these foods:
- Sweet potatoes, Potatoes
- White beans
AntioxidantsDry eyes can be caused by damage from free radicals in the body, and studies have shown that antioxidants can help fight these free radicals and so slow the process of oxidation. Antioxidant rich foods are easy to identify because they are usually a rich dark colour, these foods include all our eye health favourites and some superfoods:
- Spinach, Kale, collard greens
- Acai berries, Goji berries, blueberries etc
‘Think Blink’When concentrating (eg using a computer or driving), we can blink up to 5 times less often, this leads to increased tear evaporation. Remembering to blink more often can help keep the surface of your eye moist and reduce dry eye symptoms.
Remove the make upFor those who like a bit of glam, always remove your eye makeup. Eyeliner and other eye makeup can clog the openings of your meibomian glands at the base of your eyelashes. Blocked meibomian glands can lead to meibomian gland dysfunction and evaporative dry eye. At the end of the day always be diligent about remove all traces of makeup from your lids and lashes. Clean your eyelids. When washing your face before bedtime, gently wash your eyelids, this will help to remove the bacteria that can cause blepharitis and meibomian gland problems. Which in turn lead to dry eye symptoms. Apply a clean, warm, moist face cloth to your closed lids for at least 20 seconds. Then gently wash your lids and lashes with a mild cleanser, or use pre-moistened eyelid wipes sold in our practices. Sometime however dry eye can be caused by an underlying condition. More severe symptoms of dry eye syndrome include extreme light sensitivity (photophobia), very red and painful eyes, and deterioration in your vision. If you have any of these severe symptoms, this can be a sign of a serious complication. If this is the case contact us immediately, either by calling Greenfield on 01457 353199 or Meltham on 01484 907090 for appropriate advice or an appointment.
Dispensing Optician and Training Manager Abigayle DoeHere at Allegro Optical, we pride ourselves in having a very supportive and accomplished team. Being the UK’s leading specialist musicians optician we couldn’t have got to where we are today without our team. Today we have the pleasure of getting to know Abigayle Doe a little more, and her role within Allegro Optical as a Dispensing Optician and Training Manager. A chip off the old block ‘Abi’ is Sheryl’s oldest daughter, but far from staying in Sheryl’s shadow Abi has lost no time in building her own reputation as a Dispensing Optician, Optical Practice Manager and more recently in a training and development role. Abi has always worked hard to provide exceptional Ophthalmic Dispensing and excellent customer service. She is an award-winning Dispensing Optician in her own right and has earned many accolades while learning her craft. With a passion for developing people to their full potential Abi is driven to provide the highest standard of customer service across all areas of the business. She’s a charismatic and energetic visionary who puts the happiness and well-being of our team above all else, believing that success will come from happy people.
Training for allHaving a particular interest in paediatric dispensing Abi also enjoys dispensing clients with physical and psychological disabilities. She stresses the importance of this field when training any new members of the team. Abi undertakes ongoing support with spectacles fitting, repairs and adjustments for clients of all ages to achieve successful spectacle wear and avoid the need for additional visits by the clients. Abi brings a wealth of technical expertise to the team and just like her mum she has an extensive knowledge of ophthalmic lens design. Her professionalism ensures Allegro Optical always has up-to-date product knowledge as soon as new lenses or optical materials become available.
Out of hoursWhen not working Abi enjoys spending time with the family, especially her three nephews. She enjoys reading crime fiction and Murder mystery novels, she’s also a bit of a film buff on the quiet. Like the rest of the family Abi has a love of music and she has recently started to learn how to play baritone horn in order to gain a better understanding of the needs of brass banders. We are all incredibly proud of Abi who has recently shed over 5 stone in under a year, slimming down from a size 20 to an impressive size 8. We can honestly say she is now a shadow of her former self and she looks so much healthier for it. At Allegro Optical we always put family first and are passionate about family values. Allegro Optical recently won the Yorkshire and Humber Family Business of the Year Award. If you and your family would like to experience award winning family eye care call Greenfield on 01457 353100 or Meltham on 01484 907090 and book your appointment today.
More than just sunglassesSome of us have now already enjoyed our summer holiday. Others are preparing to go and prescription sunglasses can be found in some luggage. Some people on the other hand prefer to wear photochromic lenses all year round. This is to give their eyes sun protection whenever, wherever needed. However, one of the most common complaints from photochromic lens users is that they are either too light or too dark at the wrong times. Prescription sunglass wearers have vastly different needs from those who wear off the shelf non prescription sunglasses. For example the prescription lenses adaptability and performance is much more important. Prescription sunglass wearers simply do not have an option to remove their sunglasses when lighting conditions change. That is why it is so important for the lenses are comfortable in all situations. Traditionally prescription photochromic lenses were only available with non polarising finishes. Wearers had to choose between colour changing lenses or permanently dark polarising lenses. But things have changed. Combining state-of-the art photochromic performance and the award-winning NuPolar polarisation technology. NuPolar Infinite Grey addresses a very important aspect of adaptability for ophthalmic lens users of corrective sun lenses.
The DragonflyLike the dragonfly, NuPolar® is the true ruler of its domain. As the market leader in prescription polarised lenses, NuPolar consistently outperforms other polarised prescription lenses for the very best visual experience. Setting the benchmark for stringent optical performance, polarised film technology and colour consistency NuPolar is lenses are way ahead of their competition. NuPolar® Infinite Grey™ offers the widest possible range of light transmittance while maintaining 99% polarisation efficiency, therefore not compromising the blocking of blinding glare. NuPolar Infinite Grey is now available with a wide selection of free form progressive and single vision lenses. NuPolar Infinite Grey lenses offer a greater range of light transmission while still controlling glare. Lightest state – 35% Transmittance Darkest State – 9% Transmittance NuPolar grey lenses are also available in all our designer sunglasses including the beautiful Revlon Range which is in store now. If you would like to try out Infinite Polar Grey Polarised lenses now call Greenfield on 01457 353100 or Meltham on 01484 9007090
Sunglasses are not just for the summer in Meltham
Most of us do not think about UV in winter. We live in the UK where daylight hours are short and it is cold. On winter days especially snowy winter days UV levels can be very high. On snowy days UV is reflected from the surface of the snow giving us a double dose of UV, and so UV protection is even more important.
Polarized sunglasses give the ultimate help from sun glare. They stop reflected light from dazzling us as well as reducing brightness and giving UV protection. The reflected light in winter often comes from the snow or the sun reflecting off a wet road. This makes it easier to see especially when driving or walking into that low winter sun.
Stay safe in the sun, even in winter
There are also health benefits to wearing sunglasses in winter. UV is associated with cataract development and also causes the delicate skin around our eyes to age more quickly. In extreme cases overexposure to UV can cause snow blindness (photokeratitis). This is a temporary but very painful loss of vision due to UV damaging the cornea (the clear coat over our iris and pupil), effectively a sunburnt cornea. It does heal in 24-48 hours but better to avoid it and your risk is higher on a sunny snowy day.
On a bright windy day sunglasses can protect us from the wind drying our eyes leading to the eyes becoming irritated and sore.
Help reduce eyestrain
Sunglasses can also reduce eyestrain. On a bright day our pupils try to constrict to reduce the light entering the eye so we can see clearly without dazzle. When our pupils cannot constrict enough it leads us to screw our eyes up to reduce the light further this can give headaches and eyestrain. With sunglasses on the light is reduced already so our pupil can do the work of keeping the light filtered more effectively.
So keep those sunglasses handy in the winter do not pack them away with your shorts! If you need new sunglasses or specialist sunglasses with your prescription in come along and see us at Allegro Optical Opticians. We offer a full range of sunglass options including polarized. To book your consultation call 01484 907090