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Austin Eye Doctor

Located on South Capital Texas Hwy Next to Lenscrafters

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See Under the Sea & in the Swimming Pool Too

Wear goggles for clear & healthy underwater vision

You don’t swim naked at a public beach or swimming pool, and you shouldn’t swim with naked eyes either! At the beach, it’s hard to know if ocean water is really clean and not polluted, and the sand and salt content can make your eyes sting. If you prefer swimming in a pool, remember that while pool water can be clean, that’s only because it’s packed with chlorine, which can seriously irritate your eyes, stripping away your lubricating film and causing redness, pain, and blurry vision.

Goggles are the ideal solution for protecting your delicate eyes against the harshness of water. Also, due to advanced materials and modern engineering of the lenses in swim goggles, they provide crisper underwater vision than ever before! Your knowledgeable Westlake eye doctor explains about the benefits and features of goggles:

Prescription goggles

If you normally need eyeglasses or contacts to see above water, our Westlake optometrist strongly recommends buying a pair of prescription goggles for underwater vision. For you to see, light rays reflect off an object, enter your eyes, and are focused on your retina clearly. However, light rays don’t function the same way when they are in water. That’s why the floor of a swimming pool appears higher up than it really is. In general, goggles correct this problem by creating an air-filled gap around your eyes. But this doesn’t give sharp sight to swimmers who need vision correction. If you have nearsightedness, farsightedness, or astigmatism, you’ll need prescription goggles to see.

Wearing contact lenses and standard goggles

A lot of people are in the habit of wearing standard goggles over their contact lenses, instead of purchasing a pair of prescription goggles. What’s the problem with this? Actually, water is the problem.

Water in all bodies – lakes, pools, oceans, and hot tubs – is a natural breeding ground for bacteria and microorganisms. While your body and your eyes have a built-in defense system to protect against these menacing microbes, contact lenses interfere with your eye’s protection. Consequently, swimming with contact lenses increases your risk of getting an eye infection.

Acanthamoeba keratitis is an extremely hazardous eye infection caused by amoeba being trapped between your contact lens and your cornea. Sometimes, amoeba start to live in your eye, leading to corneal ulcers and permanent vision loss. This type of infection only happens to people who wear contact lenses, which underscores our Westlake eye doctor’s warning against swimming with contacts!

Now, we also realize that many people will insist on wearing contact lenses at the beach or pool – despite all of our warnings. If you’re one of those people, here are some tips to help you minimize the danger to your eye health:

  • Wear daily disposable contacts for swimming, since you throw them out after a single use. Remove them immediately after you come out of the water, rinse your eyes with artificial tears and replace your lenses with a new, clean pair.
  • Even if you’re didn’t fully dip into the water, if any drops fall into your eyes, remove your contacts immediately and throw them out, or disinfect them if you aren’t wearing disposables.
  • Never open your eyes underwater
  • Never go swimming and then doze off on the shore or poolside with your lenses still in your eyes

Top features for goggles – recommended by our Westlake optometrist

  • Prescription lenses, if you generally need eyewear with vision correction
  • Shatterproof lenses
  • Anti-fog treatment
  • Leak-free lenses that seal comfortably around your eyes
  • Built-in UV protection
  • Surfers should wear polarized lenses to protect against reflected glare, which can be very intense on the water
  • Competitive swimmers and divers should choose frames with a low profile
  • Recreational lap swimmers do best with larger lenses (they give wider peripheral vision), and more padded frames

More questions about swimming and vision? Ask our Westlake eye doctor!

Before you dive into the blue, sparkling waters at the beach or swimming pool, consult with an expert optometrist near you. We’ll help you find the safest way to have sharp underwater vision and a fabulous look! If you do experience irritated eyes, strange discharge, pain, sensitivity or redness after wearing your contact lenses while swimming, contact us immediately for an eye exam at Barton Creek Eyecare.

DIGITAL EYEGLASS LENSES & HIGH DEFINITION VISION

Digital eyeglass lenses offer what the eye care industry considers “high definition” vision.

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Crafting Your Eyeglass Lenses
Traditionally, crafting your eyeglass lenses relies on a few standard measurements to ensure your frame and lenses are balanced with your eyes. However, since standard lenses use estimated measurements rather than what your actual visual needs are, your vision isn’t fully corrected. Not only can standard lenses lead to poor peripheral vision, but some patients find it hard to focus up close or at a distance. For high definition vision, one must rely on more than just an eye exam or skilled optician.

Close up of woman's eye
Woman, wearing eyeglasses, frowning

High Def & Progressive Eyeglass Lenses in Westlake

Digitally surfaced lenses offer what the eye care industry considers “high definition” vision. Unlike standard lenses, digital lenses are designed based on your eyes’ unique shape and how they move. There are additional measurements that include more than just the distance between your eyes and the lenses. The complexity and subtle measurements needed to create digital lenses require computer-controlled surfacing equipment to precisely craft the lenses into the right shape rather than conventional tools. The various edges and grooves subtly etched into your new lenses will result in greater sharpness and flow with how your eyes see the world.

Plus, many progressive lens wearers prefer digital lenses as they can avoid bifocals or lined/split lenses. The design of digital progressive lenses can help you switch between near and far vision based on your lifestyle. Patients consistently share improvements with their visual acuity and enjoy wider zones of view between distance, intermediate, and near vision through their tailor-made, customized digital lenses.

Quick Facts About Digital Eyeglass Lenses

Digital lenses are available in single-vision, high-index and progressive (no-line bifocal) lenses.

Digital lenses are available in thin and light materials. (Ideal for long wear & high prescriptions.)

A great alternative to contact lens wearers.

Digital lens technology allows for surfacing of lenses in power increments of 0.01 diopter. Standard lenses using conventional surfacing tools can only allow for increments in powers from 0.125 to 0.25 diopters.

We Recommend High Definition Eyeglass Lenses for Everyone!

Adults and children equally can struggle with their eyeglasses, even if the frames fit well, don’t slide, and have additional lens treatments. Certain angles can still show up blurry or create visual distortions simply because of poor lens design. Eyestrain and poor reaction times can also occur in some patients who wear standard lenses.

No More Blurred Edges!

To maximize visual capabilities, everyone can benefit from the digitally surfaced lenses, such as improved visual field, better control of off-axis astigmatism and power error, and reduced magnification differences. Plus, your vision will stay clear no matter which direction you gaze and under any form of lighting. Digital lenses are an ideal option for anyone who wears their glasses outdoors, such as for jogging, nature walks, or light sports. We recommend adding lens treatments to protect your lenses from damage such as scratches.

Customized or Free-Form Digital Lenses are Designed:

  • Depending of the lenses position in front of the wearer’s eyes.
  • With the size of the frame in mind
  • Considering the relationship between your eye’s pupil and the outline of the frame
  • Upon where your gaze is positioned. How you look to the sides rather than straight ahead forms various angles between the eye and the back surface of the lens.

A digital lens takes these slight changes into consideration so your vision remains clear at all times. High-definition digital lenses guarantee the widest fields of vision without distortion for better peripheral vision and overall clarity. For progressive lens wearers, this also allows you greater control switching from near and far views.

Close up of camera lens

DRY EYE TECHNOLOGY IN WESTLAKE

When tears decrease in frequency,
Dry Eye is typically the result.

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Beaker with sand and origami inside

Dry Eye Syndrome Treatment

Typically, Dry Eye Syndrome DES is treated with medicated eye drops, anti-inflammatory drops, or a heated compress. Occasionally, the doctor may recommend punctal plugs. These are tiny devices that are inserted into the eye’s tear duct, blocking any drainage. This can alleviate DES symptoms by preventing moisture from draining out of the eye, instead keeping them inside the tear duct area. This increases the moisture level, giving longer-term relief. Plus, punctal plugs are not permanent and can be easily removed or replaced, making them a simple, affordable solution to alleviate symptoms.

Dry Eye Technology

Advancements in medical technology and scientific breakthroughs have made treatment for Dry Eye easier, with quicker results, and longer-lasting benefits. Three of the up-and-coming technologies for DES treatment is TearLab.

Barton Creek Eyecare has some of the most cutting-edge and advanced technologies to quickly and effectively test for Dry Eye Syndrome. Let Dr. Robert Soltys and the talented, experienced staff help get you started on the path to real long-term relief from Dry Eye.

TearLab

The TearLab device measures concentration levels in human tears. This helps diagnose DES by noting any levels of tear concentration that are elevated, which can be a sign of Dry Eye.

TearLab consists of a 3-in-1 device: the test card, test pen, and countertop unit. The test card is a single-use microchip that collects a tiny sample of tear fluid in under 30 seconds. It sits inside the test pen, which analyzes and sends the data t the reader, which is in the unit. The unit rests on a flat surface and displays the test results in seconds.

What is Dry Eye Syndrome?

Dry Eye Syndrome, referred to as DES, is a chronic eye condition that occurs when the eyes produce an insufficient amount of tears or when the tears lack the essential oils that lubricate the eye’s surface. (This often results in watery eyes and excessive tearing!). A well-lubricated eye blocks foreign bodies or substances from irritating the eye’s surface.

Dr. Robert Soltys treats patients from all over Westlake, Texas who have Dry Eye symptoms, helping them achieve long-lasting relief from Dry Eye Syndrome.

Woman putting eye drops in her eyes
Girl sneezing from allergies

What Causes Dry Eye?

Dry Eye can result from a number of factors, including genetics, the natural aging process, or prescription medications, to name a few.

Hormonal changes are a common cause of Dry Eye. In fact, women who are pregnant, breastfeeding, taking oral contraceptives, or experiencing menopause find that their eyes feel dry and uncomfortable during these times. Women over the age of 50 have a 50% greater chance of developing DES than men of the same age.

Dry Eye Treatment and Relief

Those who suffer from DES often try to alleviate the pain by blinking either less or more often, rubbing their eyes, or by using over-the-counter artificial tears.

Why is blinking important? Blinking is healthy because it naturally moisturizes the eyes and gets rid of tiny particles that may enter the eye. Less blinking can increase dryness, itching, or redness, making DES symptoms even more acute.

Rubbing your eyes, especially when they’re already irritated, can intensify your symptoms. This is because the added pressure can make the pain worse. If your hands aren’t 100% clean, you can unintentionally spread germs or bacteria into your eyes when you rub them. Rubbing the eyes can also cause tiny blood vessels to break, increasing the redness of your eyes.

Artificial tears provide some temporary relief by lubricating the eyes with a medicated solution. These can be quite effective at alleviating soreness and itchiness, however, excessive use isn’t recommended. Many brands include preservatives, which aren’t good for your health in the long-term. Other preservative-free brands can, over time, fail to relieve the basic Dry Eye symptoms. Patients may find that having to continuously purchase artificial tears can become costly, and consistently using them throughout the day disrupts their daily activities.

Common Symptoms of Dry Eye

Patients with DES experience a number of symptoms that can disrupt their daily activities or cause chronic pain.

The most common signs of DES include the following:

  • Blurriness
  • Burning
  • Dryness
  • Feeling as if something is in your eye
  • Irritation
  • Itchy eyes
  • Pain
  • Red eyes
  • Stinging
  • Watery eyes
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We are open!!! The health and safety of our patients and staff continues to be a priority. Again, thank you for choosing Barton Creek Eyecare, and we wish you and your family the best in health. Click here to read more.

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