Protect Your Vision
You may already know that scheduling comprehensive eye exams each year with an ophthalmologist near Chicago is an effective way to protect your healthy vision. But did you know that sports, workplace hazards, and yard work are the leading causes of eye injuries? Talk to your ophthalmologist about preventive eye care. He or she is likely to recommend that you wear safety glasses that offer side protection to reduce your risk of vision loss due to eye injuries.
For more helpful tips on protecting your vision, watch this video and consult an ophthalmologist. This expert discusses why you can’t rely on regular eyeglasses to protect your eyes from injuries caused by airborne yard debris, chemicals, or blunt force trauma.
Why You Should Consider LASIK
Laser in situ keratomileusis (LASIK) is a type of eye surgery that corrects refractive errors, such as nearsightedness and farsightedness. It can also be used to correct astigmatism and presbyopia. LASIK is the most popular type of refractive surgery in the U.S., with good reason. It offers freedom from corrective lenses, it has an exceptional safety record, and it only requires a minimal recovery period. To find out if having laser eye surgery near Chicago might be a good choice for you, consult an ophthalmologist.
Permanent Vision Correction
One of the most common reasons why people have LASIK eye surgery is that it reduces or eliminates their dependence on eyeglasses and contact lenses. LASIK can correct your vision by creating a very small flap in the cornea with a precisely focused laser. Then, the excimer laser reshapes the cornea. A properly shaped cornea can focus light on the retina precisely, which eliminates refractive errors such as nearsightedness and farsightedness. The excimer laser is capable of reshaping the living tissue of your corneal cells without causing damage such as scar tissue.
Superior Patient Safety
If you’ve been delaying talking to an eye doctor about LASIK surgery because of safety concerns, you can rest assured that the low rate of complications makes LASIK surgery one of the safest procedures available. In fact, LASIK surgery may actually help protect your vision. Since you won’t need to put in contact lenses every day, you’ll have a lower risk of eye infections.
Another reason to consider having LASIK is that it won’t take up too much of your time. After your consultation with the ophthalmologist to determine if you’re a good candidate, the procedure itself takes less than 30 minutes—and much of that time is spent on preparations. The laser takes less than a minute per eye to correct refractive errors.
Immediately after having LASIK surgery, it’s advisable to rest for several hours with your eyes closed. You can take a nap while wearing plastic shields to protect your eyes. Patients typically rest for a day or two, after which they can return to most activities. However, it’s important to protect the eyes from irritants for a while. Compared to most surgical procedures, the recovery for LASIK is quite minimal.
When to Have Cataract Surgery
The only effective treatment for cataracts is to undergo cataract surgery . However, not everyone needs cataract surgery right away. If you’ve been diagnosed with this eye condition, you can consult a cataract surgeon serving Chicago for personalized recommendations. The cataract surgeon may inform you that you do not necessarily need surgery right away if the cataract is not interfering with your daily activities or causing blurry vision. Some individuals only undergo surgery when their cataracts cause problems with reading, driving, or other activities.
However, if you do have the option of waiting to have surgery, you should be aware of the potential risks associated with letting a cataract go untreated. For example, some cataracts that are left untreated for long periods of time can cause inflammation or increased eye pressure, which can contribute to glaucoma. Previously, cataract surgeons could only perform surgery when the cataract was already in an advanced stage of development. As a cataract develops, it becomes harder. Thanks to modern eye surgery technology, ophthalmologists can now remove cataracts when they are at any stage of development.
Practice Fireworks Safety for Your Eye Health
Did you know that July has been designated as Fireworks Eye Safety Month? Annually, thousands of people suffer from injuries caused by fireworks during June and July, over a thousand of which involve eye injuries. A significant percentage of affected individuals are children and teens. Since fireworks can cause irreversible blindness, an ophthalmologist near Chicago may recommend that patients avoid fireworks displays altogether. If you do decide to view fireworks displays or to use legal consumer fireworks at home, you can ask your eye doctor for some eye care tips to protect your vision.
Understanding the Risks
Before attending a fireworks display, it’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with the potential risks. Many people assume that the individuals who are handling the fireworks are at the highest risk of injury. It’s true that many of the injuries caused by fireworks involve the hands and fingers. However, roughly half of all fireworks injuries are sustained by bystanders . Fireworks can cause eye injuries such as ruptured eyeballs, optic nerve damage, retinal detachment, and thermal burns to the eye. They can also cause severe lacerations and abrasions.
Protecting Yourself as a Bystander
If you choose to enjoy summer fireworks displays, only attend authorized public displays that are conducted by individuals with the proper licensing. Stay behind the safety barriers, which should be placed at least 500 feet away from the fireworks. If you come across any unexploded fireworks, never try to pick them up. Instead, maintain a safe distance and contact your local fire or police department.
Using Consumer Fireworks Safely
Consumer fireworks are particularly dangerous, which is why many states and municipalities have made them illegal. If you do choose to purchase consumer fireworks, make sure they are legal in your area. Your eye doctor would also advise you to never give fireworks, including sparklers, to children. Sparklers can burn at up to 2,000 degrees. Those who handle fireworks and any individuals who are viewing the fireworks must wear protective eyewear at all times.
Responding to Fireworks Eye Injuries
Despite following these safety tips, serious eye injuries may still occur. It’s critical to get immediate medical help. While waiting for emergency responders to arrive, avoid rubbing the eye, applying pressure, applying ointments, rinsing the eye, or removing any embedded objects. Additionally, avoid taking pain relievers such as ibuprofen or aspirin.