• Seven Bad Eye Habits to Change Right Now

    We all have bad habits we tend to ignore. Some habits are just minor indiscretions that don’t really have much of an impact. Others, however, can have life-changing effects. Bad habits involving your eyes can have a major impact on your vision.

    In fact, if you are doing any of these seven things, you should stop right now.

    • Smoking: Smoking is bad for every system in your body, and your eyes are no different. People who smoke are at an increased risk of age-related macular degeneration, glaucoma, cataracts, dry eye syndrome and diabetic retinopathy, all of which can cause vision loss.
    • Rubbing your Eyes: Rubbing your eyes can break tiny blood vessels in your eyes, and can also transfer germs that can cause eye infections. What’s more, for someone with a pre-existing eye condition, rubbing the eyes can worsen those conditions.
    • Overusing Eye Drops: Eye drops can be helpful, but when they’re overused even over-the-counter drops can do more harm than good. Used too frequently, eye drops can cause symptoms ranging from eye irritation to nausea and headaches. Always read labels carefully and remember that more is not always better.
    • Sleeping in Contact Lenses: When you sleep in your lenses, you deprive your eyes of oxygen. What’s more, you could be trapping bacteria that can lead to serious eye infections.
    • Staring at Screens: Too much time in front of the blue light from screens can cause eyestrain. There are ways to alleviate the problem, though, like wearing computer glasses, working in proper lighting and making a point to look away from the screen frequently.
    • Eating poorly: A diet that lacks important nutrients can be damaging to your eyes, but filling your diet with vegetables, fruit and lean protein can go a long way toward protecting your eye health.
    • Not wearing sunglasses: Sunglasses protect eyes from UV rays, reducing the risk of age-related macular degeneration and cataracts.

    Perhaps the worst habit? Skipping the eye doctor. In fact, experts suggest an annual eye exam, for optimal eye health. If you’re looking for a reliable eye doctor in Derry, Spindel Eye Associates is here for you. Celebrating over thirty years of eye care, we proudly serve patients in Derry, Londonderry, and Windham, providing personalized eye care using top-of-the-line technology. For more information or to schedule an appointment call 603.421.6536 or contact us through our website.

  • 6 Common Eye Issues and What You Need to Know About Them

    How much do you know about eye diseases? There are many different eye diseases, and while some may sound familiar, others only exist in underdeveloped countries. The more you know about common diseases, the more easily you’ll be able to avoid them.

    When you have an eye exam, there are six problems your doctor is likely to encounter:

    • Dry eye affects about 48 percent of Americans over the age of 18. A chronic, progressive condition, dry eye can cause symptoms like a gritty, sandy feeling in the eye, excessive blinking, or a burning sensation. Left untreated, dry eye can permanently damage the cornea. However, this condition can be treated with eye drops or, in some cases, surgery.
    • Glaucoma, often linked to high pressure in the eye, can damage the optic nerve and cause permanent blindness. In the early stages, it has no symptoms, so it’s important to have regular eye exams in order for your doctor to diagnose and treat this condition before your vision is permanently affected. There’s no cure for glaucoma, but treatment can slow its progression.
    • Cataracts impair vision through a clouding of the lens of the eye. Symptoms include blurry or dim vision, increasingly poor night vision, sensitivity to light and glare, need for brighter light for reading, fading or yellowing of colors, double vision in one eye, frequent changes in eyeglass prescription or seeing “halos” around lights. Fortunately, cataracts can be removed with a safe, simple, effective surgery.
    • Macular degeneration, a leading cause of vision loss among people over forty, affects about 6.5 million Americans. Treatment options for macular degeneration are limited, so it’s important to be diagnosed early in order to take preventive measures to protect your vision.
    • Ocular allergies can cause itching, redness, burning and tearing of the thin membranes of the eyelid and eyes. It can be seasonal or perennial. Your doctor can diagnose ocular allergies and prescribe medication or eye drops to help.
    • Diabetic Retinopathy occurs in people who have diabetes and causes progressive damage to the retina. It’s a serious, sight-threatening condition that can cause spots or floaters in vision, blurred vision, a dark or empty spot in the center of vision, and difficulty seeing well at night. However, in the early stages of diabetic retinopathy, there are no visual symptoms, so regular eye exams are important for diagnosis. Treatments for diabetic retinopathy focus on slowing the progression of the condition and include controlling blood sugar and, in some cases, laser treatment.

    The best way to protect against eye issues is to have regular eye exams. If you’re looking for a reliable eye doctor in Derry, Spindel Eye Associates is here for you. Celebrating over thirty years of eye care, we proudly serve patients in Derry, Londonderry and Windham, providing personalized eye care using top-of-the-line technology. For more information or to schedule an appointment call 603.421.6536 or contact us through our website.

  • Three Tips for Avoiding Eye Infections

    Have you ever had an eye infection? Eye infections are very common, and different types of eye infections have different causes. Eye infections can be fungal, bacterial or viral, but doctors classify the infection based on the part of the eye that’s affected.

    For example, there’s keratitis, which is an infection of the cornea. Conjunctivitis is an inflammation of the conjunctiva, the membrane of the inner eyelid and the inner corner of the eye. An infection of the eyelid is called blepharitis, while an infection of the liquid inside the eye is called vitritis. Neuroretinitis refers to an inflammation of the optic nerve, while chorioretinitis is an infection of the retina and blood vessels.  The most common infection is “pink eye,” which is conjunctivitis caused by a common cold virus. Viral conjunctivitis is very contagious because it can be spread from the eyes to the hands and surfaces that are shared with others.

    Even though eye infections have different causes and classifications, there are some good practices for avoiding all types of eye infections.

    • Keep everything clean. Germs can come from your hands, face, linens, washcloths, towels, pillowcases- anything that makes contact with your eyes or the area around them. It’s especially important to wash your hands before you touch your eyes.
    • Don’t share things related to your eyes. Sharing eye makeup, washcloths, contact lenses or eye medicine can transfer infectious bacteria from one person to another. Some people are more susceptible to certain bacterial infections, so even if your friend doesn’t have an eye infection, sharing makeup might cause an infection in your eyes.
    • Protect your eyes from outside contaminants. Don’t touch your eyes or face with your hands, unless you’ve just washed them, and always wear goggles or safety glasses in hazardous conditions or around chemicals. Don’t wear contacts when you sleep, because they can trap contaminants in your eyes, as well as depriving the eyes of oxygen.

    If you think you have an eye infection, seek medical help immediately. Left untreated, infections can sometimes damage eyes and degrade vision. If you’re looking for a reliable eye doctor in Derry, Spindel Eye Associates is here for you. Celebrating over thirty years of eye care, we proudly serve patients in Derry, Londonderry and Windham, providing personalized eye care using top-of-the-line technology. For more information or to schedule an appointment call 603.421.6536 or contact us through our website.

  • Five Ways to Protect Your Eyes as You Age

    As we age, our eyes are more susceptible to eye diseases. As you might deduce from the name, age-related macular degeneration affects older people. However, conditions like diabetic retinopathy, cataracts, glaucoma, and dry eye also become more likely as people grow older. Fortunately, these conditions are not a certainty, no matter how old you are.

    You can protect your vision with healthy habits. In fact, by following these five practices, you can greatly decrease your likelihood of developing eye problems.

    • Don’t smoke. Smoking damages every part of your body, so it’s no surprise that it’s bad for your eyes. Smokers are at a much higher risk than non-smokers for conditions like cataracts and age-related macular degeneration.
    • Eat a diet full of fruit, vegetables, fish, and nuts. Dark leafy greens, carrots and sweet potatoes, and other colorful vegetables full of nutrients like lutein, beta-carotene, and vitamins A, C, and E can help protect your eyes. So can lean proteins, especially those from non-animal sources like nuts, oily fish, which are full of healthy omega-3 fatty acids and eggs, which are packed with lutein.
    • Protect your eyes when you go outside. Wear sunglasses and a hat if you’re going to be in bright In fact, even if it doesn’t seem very sunny, wear sunglasses anyway, to guard against UV rays. Wear goggles in the pool and protective eyewear when you’re participating in active outdoor activities.
    • Exercise regularly. Many recent studies underscore the importance of regular exercise for optimal eye health. Additionally, moderate-intensity, low impact exercises may reduce eye pressure in young adults who have glaucoma.
    • Get regular checkups- for both your body and your eyes. Many people have an annual physical, yet neglect to see a doctor about their eyes. Healthy young adults should have an eye exam every year.

    If you need an eye exam and are looking for a reliable eye doctor in Derry, Spindel Eye Associates is here for you. Celebrating over thirty years of eye care, we proudly serve patients in Derry, Londonderry and Windham, providing personalized eye care using top-of-the-line technology. For more information or to schedule an appointment call 603.421.6536 or contact us through our website.

  • Meibomian Gland Dysfunction Treatment Options

    • First, what is a Meibomian gland? Meibomian glands are located in the eyelids and named after Dr. Heinrich Meibom, who first noticed and made drawings of them, all the way back in 1666. There are a lot of them: 25 to 40 Meibomian glands in the upper eyelid and 20 to 30 in the lower lid. They secrete oil onto the eye’s surface to help prevent tears from evaporating. When the amount or quality of this oil is compromised, or the gland itself becomes blocked or otherwise changes, MGD can be the result.
    • What puts you at risk for Meibomian gland dysfunction? As is the case with many other eye issues, the risk of MGD increases as you age. If you wear eye makeup and don’t thoroughly remove it from around your eyes, especially before bed, it can raise your risk of MGD. There may be a connection between contact lens wear and MGD, though most researchers agree that there’s not enough evidence yet to determine that conclusively.
    • What are the symptoms of MGD? Redness, gritty sensation, itchy feeling in your eyes, and blurred vision are the primary symptoms. You might also have irritated and inflamed eyelids. Many people with MGD have an uneven, rough-looking inner rim of the eyelid. Symptoms can get worse if the air is very dry, or if you spend a lot of time focused on a computer screen. To diagnose MGD, your doctor might apply pressure to your eyelid and observe the Meibomian gland’s secretions.
    • How is Meibomian gland dysfunction treated? MGD can be treated with warm compresses and eyelid massage, but that is not always effective. Two of the most effective treatments and newest are LipiFlow and Intense Pulsed Light.
      • LipiFlow: LipiFlow thermal pulsation system uses both heat and pulsed pressure in a two-part approach. While applying heat to the eyelids in order to melt the waxy deposits in the Meibomian glands, it applies pulsed pressure to the eyelid, opening the glands to thoroughly express their contents.
      • Intense Pulsed Light: In this procedure, the doctor applies shields, on the face and around the eyes to protect the eyes from the light. After applying a thin layer of cooling gel to the treatment area, the doctor will then use a small handheld device to flash intense pulses of light around the eyelids. The contents of the Meibomian glands are then expressed.

    If you’re looking for an eye specialist familiar with the most up-to-date treatments for Meibomian gland dysfunction, trust the experience and knowledge of the doctors at Spindel Eye Associates. Celebrating our thirtieth year of eye care, we proudly serve patients in Derry, Londonderry, Windham, providing personalized eye care using top of the line technology. For more information or to schedule an appointment call 603.421.6536 or contact us through our website.

     

  • Why Your Eyesight Changes with Age

    If you’re over 40 and planning to visit your vision center near Windham for an eye exam, then you may have questions about how your age can affect your vision. Read on to learn about how age can result in changes in your eyesight.

    In Your 40s Eyesight Changes with Age

    While there is a lot that you can do to help preserve the health of your eyes over the years, it’s natural for them to develop signs of aging. When an individual reaches their 40s, a common vision change that they might experience is presbyopia, which refers to a reduced ability to focus the eyes due to a hardening of the lenses. Presbyopia tends to become noticeable when the person is doing close work with small objects or reading. In the early stages of the condition, most people can counteract the effects of presbyopia by adjusting the distance of their reading material, but multifocal contact lenses or reading glasses may be necessary later on.

    In Your 50s

    Age increases your risk for developing a wide range of diseases, and this includes those of the eye. Some of the common conditions that begin to develop with age include cataracts, macular degeneration, and glaucoma. At this stage in life, it’s important to start monitoring your vision and scheduling regular eye exams. Also, visit your eye care center after being diagnosed with any other health conditions, such as diabetes or hypertension. Glaucoma, in particular, is important to treat in its early stages, so see your eye doctor if you begin experiencing changes in your vision.

    In Your 60s

    According to eye doctors, everyone would develop cataracts at some point if they lived long enough. Because cataracts are so common among older individuals, it’s considered to be a natural part of the aging process. This disease occurs when small clumps of proteins begin to block light from the eye and reduce a person’s vision. If your cataracts starts to interfere with your daily life, speak to your doctor about cataract surgery. Finally, at this age, it’s important to begin seeing an optometrist annually for eye screenings.

  • Is Your Smartphone Harming Your Eyes?

    According to eye specialists , your cell phone could be affecting your eyesight. If you’re experiencing vision problems and live in Derry, then there is a chance that they are related to your smartphone use. Watch this video to learn about the link between your phone and your vision.

    After looking at a screen all day, some people can develop a vision problem called digital eye strain. Symptoms of this condition include blurred or double vision, difficulty focusing, watery eyes, increased light sensitivity, and burning, tired, or itchy eyes.

    According to eye doctors, there are a few reasons why the screens of cell phones and other devices can cause eye strain. First, people often blink less when looking at a screen. Second many people hold their devices too close to their face. Finally, the glare coming off of the screen can be irritating to the eyes.

  • How LASIK Benefits Athletes

    Athletes who live in Manchester and those located near Londonderry and Derry might consider LASIK surgery for a variety of reasons. Like other LASIK patients, athletes can benefit from significant improvements in their quality of life. LASIK eye surgery brings freedom from dependency on eyeglasses and contact lenses. For athletes in particular, LASIK eye surgery might help these patients elevate their game to a higher level.

    Convenience of Worry-Free Vision LASIK

    With LASIK eye surgery, there is no longer any need for athletes to worry about complications related to eyeglasses or contact lenses. For example, swimmers simply can’t wear eyeglasses to compete; they must wear contact lenses. Unfortunately, there are several good reasons why the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recommended that consumers avoid wearing contact lenses while swimming . Doing so can place these individuals at risk of eye infections and even corneal ulcers. While contact lenses are a good choice for many ophthalmology patients, athletes can benefit from the worry-free convenience offered by LASIK eye surgery.

    Possibility of Eye Irritation

    Athletes from all different sports activities can benefit from LASIK, not just swimmers. LASIK eliminates the possibility of eye irritation from contact lenses while participating in sports activities. This is a particular area of concern for outdoor athletes, who are exposed to wind, dust, dirt, and similar problems. Wind and airborne pollutants can easily irritate the eyes, especially when the individual is wearing contact lenses.

    Risk of Eye Injuries

    Some athletes might choose to become LASIK eye surgery patients because they wish to protect their eyes from possible injuries. LASIK can be considered a much safer choice than eyeglasses while playing sports, particularly when there is a possibility that the athlete will fall down or sustain a blow to the face. In these situations, there is always the chance that the eyeglasses will shatter and inflict serious injuries to the eyes that might result in permanent vision loss. After undergoing LASIK eye surgery, athletes can enjoy the peace of mind that comes from knowing that this is no longer a concern.

  • Eye Health and Your Diet

    Did you know that an eye doctor can often determine which patients have diabetes without ever looking at their medical history? When you go for an eye exam in the Derry area, the eye doctor can check for damage of the retina , which is at the back of the eye. If you have diabetes and high blood sugar levels, over time, this can inflict damage on the blood vessels of the retina and increase the risk of retinal detachment and vision loss.

    When you watch this video, you’ll get some basic eye care tips. This diabetes patient explains the importance of carefully managing blood sugar levels by limiting the amount of simple carbohydrates in the diet. Instead of choosing white rice, for example, you can choose brown rice, which won’t make your blood sugar levels skyrocket.

  • Practicing Good Vision Care

    The first step to practicing good eye health is to visit an eye doctor at any one of our offices in Derry, Windham or Londonderry. Schedule a comprehensive eye exam once per year, even if you think your vision is fine or your prescription hasn’t changed. Your eye doctor can perform a number of tests to evaluate the overall health of your eyes. Dilated eye exams, for instance, allow your eye doctor to check for the early warning signs of eye diseases. Scheduling an annual eye exam also gives you the opportunity to talk to your eye doctor about your concerns, such as which protective gear you need to protect your eyes in the workplace, while doing yardwork, or while playing sports.

    There are plenty of other ways to protect your eye health throughout the year. If you smoke, you should be aware that this increases your risk of cataracts, macular degeneration, and optic nerve damage. Quitting smoking and protecting yourself from secondhand smoke is essential. In addition, many people spend hours each day in front of a computer. Computer usage is associated with a decline in normal blinking activity, which leads to eye fatigue. Follow the 20-20-20 rule: Every 20 minutes, you should look at a point about 20 feet away from you for about 20 seconds.

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