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Algonquin Eye Clinic – Is a Blinding Eye Disease Hiding?

Vision loss can occur with early signs only an eye doctor can see

Many eye diseases can be quickly and easily diagnosed during a comprehensive eye exam, pediatric eye exam and contact lens eye exam. If you were diagnosed with an eye disease, such as cataracts, glaucoma, macular degeneration, diabetic retinopathy, or dry eye, you may be overwhelmed by the diagnosis and confused about what happens next. Will you need medications or surgery – now or in the future? Is LASIK eye and vision surgery an option for you? Our Algonquin eye doctor is always ready to answer your questions about eye disease and Contact lenses.

During the very early stages of many eye diseases, most people never notice a problem. For example, when age-related macular degeneration (AMD) first appears, blind spots can develop that people don’t see because their brain is compensating. But while the individual with AMD may not be aware of the disease, an eye doctor will detect it during a comprehensive eye exam. That’s why the American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO) strongly recommends people over age 40 to protect themselves from vision loss by visiting an eye clinic regularly for dilated eye exams.

How common is age-related macular degeneration?

Estimates report that more than 2 million Americans live with the most progressive forms of AMD, and this number is expected to rise to 4.4 million people by 2050. Age-related macular degeneration is the top cause of blindness among white Americans who are older than 40, and it’s one of the most common reasons for permanent vision loss in the world.

What is AMD?

This eye disease occurs when your macula, a part of the retina, is damaged. The macula is responsible for giving you a crisp, clear vision in the center of your field of view. A loss of central vision has far-reaching effects on your life, hampering your ability to read, drive, and see faces.

How often do I need to visit an eye care professional?

According to the AAO, adults with no signs or risk factors for ocular disease are advised to start with regular eye exams from age 40. Then, until age 54, guidelines recommend visiting an eye clinic every two to four years; between age 55-64, you should see your eye doctor every one to three years. By the time you are 65, annual eye exams are encouraged – even if you don’t experience any visual or eye symptoms. Of course, if you have additional risk factors for eye disease, your eye doctor may instruct you to visit more frequently.

Can vision loss from AMD be prevented?

Nowadays, eye doctors have even more technologies to diagnose age-related macular degeneration as early as possible – as long as you are vigilant about visiting your eye clinic for eye exams! Why are all these eye exams so important? Because the earlier AMD is detected and treated; the more effective treatment can be.

Possible treatments to help prevent vision loss from age-related macular degeneration include:

  • Injections of drugs to stop new blood vessels from forming and to block leaking from unhealthy blood vessels (symptoms characteristic of wet AMD)
  • Laser therapy to destroy abnormal blood vessels that are actively growing
  • Photodynamic laser therapy that causes damage to abnormal blood vessels
  • Taking vitamins as eye health supplements

Don’t let your brain fool you into thinking your vision is fine! Instead, let an eye doctor make that decision. In the year 2020, you couldn’t pick a better time to focus on your eyes. Contact an eye care center near you to book an eye exam today.

Call ATKINSON EYE CARE today to make an appointment: 847-854-5700 or alternatively you can book an appointment online here CLICK FOR AN APPOINTMENT

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What to Expect & Patient FAQ for COVID

What to expect upon arrival to an appointment

  • Employees and doctors will be in masks and/or gloves.
  • We are asking that all patients wear masks and gloves. If you don’t have any, we will provide them for you.
  • We are limiting the number of people in the building at the same time. If we reach that number, we may ask that you wait in your vehicle to allow time to properly sanitize in-between patients.
  • We are asking that all patients come to their appointments alone, if possible, or only bring one other person if necessary. Example: Child/Parent
  • We will have social distancing measures in place. We are asking that all patients stay 6 feet away from other patients during your visit to our practice.

Patient FAQ for COVID-19

Is it safe to schedule a regular appointment?

  • We are taking all safety precautions to ensure a safe and sanitary environment for all patients.

Why am I scheduled with a doctor that isn’t my regular doctor?

  • We are spacing out appointments to honor social distancing measures and will be scheduling one doctor a day to be working in the building. The doctor scheduled on the day of your appointment may not be your regular doctor, but we can ensure they will provide the ultimate care for you during this visit.

What if I don’t have a mask and gloves? Am I able to still make an appointment?

  • Absolutely. We are asking that all patients wear gloves and masks to appointments. If you don’t have these items, we will provide a sterile mask and gloves for you to use during your appointment.

What precautions are you taking to stop the spread of COVID-19?

  • We have several precautions in place to ensure the safety of our team and our patients. Our team will be wearing masks and gloves, and we are also providing masks and gloves to patients, as needed. We are enforcing a 6-foot rule for patients waiting in line at the reception area. We are limiting the number of people inside the building at one time, and asking that all patients come alone or bring one other person if necessary. We are spacing out our appointments to allow time to thoroughly disinfecting all surfaces and equipment in between each patient so we can ensure a sanitary environment for the next patient.

Should I be wearing contact lenses during this time?

  • Yes, it is okay to wear contacts. One of the main concerns around preventing COVID-19 is the number of times you touch your eyes and face – If you handle your lenses properly, it’s not as much of an issue. That means you should wash your hands thoroughly before putting your contacts in and properly disinfecting your contacts with a multi-purpose solution, not saline. It also means disposing of your contact lenses according to your doctor’s instructions. If you become sick, we do recommend you discontinue contact lens wear, whether it is the flu or coronavirus, as a good eye health practice.

Can I try on frames at this time?

  • Of course! In addition to cleaning each frame after it is tried on, we are continually cleaning all frames and surfaces with disinfectant to maintain the highest level of cleanliness. We also provide additional hand sanitizer for customer use.

Can I still get my new frames fitted when picking them up?

  • Yes! We ask that you set up an appointment to pick up your frames so we can ensure that we have a tech ready to fit them for you.

Do You Know Great Opticians?

Be Our New OpticianAs we celebrate twenty-five years of devoted service to our community, we at Atkinson Eye Care are pleased to announce that we are looking to hire another optician.

If you know of anyone who can fit the role of a Full Time, Experienced Optician including evenings and Saturdays, please reach out!

The ideal candidate will be dynamic and friendly, organized, and efficient at multi-tasking in a very busy environment. Knowledge of lenses and vision care plans is a must. We have an outstanding and professional work environment and are a great place to work with; we have both a friendly staff and wonderful patients!

Resumes with cover letters can be emailed to aec@atkinsoneyecare.comcastbiz.net or call Atkinson Eye Care 847-854-5700

 

Do I have Eye Allergies?

Know the symptoms of seasonal eye allergies and how to get rid of this pesky problem

As the weather warms, flower buds are opening, and your neighbors are dragging their lawnmowers out for an annual spring tune-up. And suddenly you find a need to rub your itchy, red, and sore eyes constantly. Yep, it’s that time of year again – the time that seasonal allergies blossom with the trees.

Nasal symptoms of seasonal allergies, like a runny nose and sneezing, usually get all the attention, but actually, eye allergies (your eye doctor may call it “allergic conjunctivitis”) are pretty common – affecting millions of people in the US. Grass allergy and pollen in the eyes are the primary cause of eye irritation. What’s the best treatment? And how can you get rid of your eye allergies?

Local Contact lens supplier near you in Algonquin, Illinois

Eye exam to diagnose eye allergies in Algonquin, Illinois eye doctor’s tips on how to recognize and relieve allergies.

The ocular symptoms of your seasonal allergies are caused when your body’s immune system becomes sensitized and overreacts to an environmental trigger that’s really harmless. That trigger, called an allergen, makes contact with antibodies in your eyes – and these cells respond by releasing histamine. Histamine and other natural chemicals cause tiny blood vessels in your eyes to leak, which can lead to redness, itchiness, burning, inflammation, and watery eyes. The symptoms can range from mild to severe enough to interfere with your clear vision. Rest assured – eye allergies are not dangerous, as annoying as they can be.

However, these symptoms alone are not enough to blame seasonal allergies. All of these signs are not unique to eye allergies and could point to several different eye diseases. That’s why a precise diagnosis is imperative! Our Algonquin, Illinois eye doctor will perform a comprehensive evaluation of your eyes to identify the cause of the irritation.

Atkinson Eye Care Eye Clinic and seasonal allergies in Algonquin, Illinois

Many eye diseases can be quickly and easily diagnosed during a comprehensive eye exam. If you were diagnosed with an eye disease, such as Cataracts, Glaucoma, Macular degeneration, Diabetic retinopathy, or Dry eye, you may be overwhelmed by the diagnosis and confused about what happens next. Will you need medications or surgery – now or in the future? Our Algonquin eye doctor has prepared the following answers to your questions about eye disease.

Avoid your trigger to get rid of eye allergies

Grass allergy and pollen in your eyes are the most typical triggers for seasonal eye allergies, often called hay fever. Since that’s the case, you’re probably wondering how you can possibly avoid these widespread allergens. Before you lock yourself in your room and wait for the seasons to change, our eye doctor recommends:

  • Keep windows closed when the pollen count is high. Use a/c in your home, office, and the car in order to clean the air around you.
  • Do not rub your eyes! This spreads the pollen (and irritation!) all over.
  • When you are outdoors, always wear glasses and sunglasses to keep pollen out of your eyes. Don’t wear your contacts! Contact lenses can exacerbate eye allergies because they are a great surface for pollen to cling to and pile up.
  • When you return indoors after being exposed to seasonal allergens, rinse your eyes with saline drops.
  • Clean your floors with a damp rag, instead of sweeping with a dry broom that pushes any pollen that’s settled back into the air.

Local seasonal allergies in Algonquin, Illinois

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What’s the best treatment for eye allergies?

Some of the symptoms can be managed with nonprescription drugs, especially if your eye allergies are mild. Try using artificial tears to keep your ocular surface clean. Decongestant eye drops may also help, however, it’s not a good idea to use these for more than a few days since they can worsen your condition with prolonged use.

What about antihistamines for red eyes and seasonal allergies? Antihistamine eye drops, mast cell stabilizer eye drops, corticosteroid eye drops, and NSAID eye drops are accepted short-term treatment for eye allergies. Because these are all prescription drugs, you will need to visit your eye doctor (and possibly an allergist too) to determine which medication is most suitable for you. Some non-sedating oral histamines may also be effective at relieving your symptoms, but they can dry out eyes – thereby making the irritation worse. If your seasonal allergies are extreme and get in the way of functional living, immunotherapy allergy shots or tablets may offer long-term relief.

Are seasonal allergies disrupting your life?

Visit Atkinson Eye Care for more tips on how to enjoy clear and comfortable vision in Algonquin, Illinois , all year-round! Call Atkinson Eye Care on 847-260-9509 to schedule an eye exam with our Algonquin optometrist. Alternatively book an appointment online here CLICK FOR AN APPOINTMENT

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Just in case you missed them, here are some of our previous blog posts :

The Power of Tears

Ever Wonder How People See Following a Corneal Transplant?

Can I Wear Contacts If I Have Astigmatism?

Sports-Related Eye Injuries