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Cougar Health Services July 2016

10 fun facts about eyes

10 fun facts about eyes

Eyes are one of the most complex organs in the human body, second only to our brains. Check out these 10 fun facts about eyes from the experts at our vision clinic!

  1. Your eye muscles are the fastest muscles in your body – hence the saying “it happened in the blink of an eye.”
  2. The world’s most common eye color is brown, but brown eyes are actually blue underneath the brown pigment.
  3. Some people are born with two differently colored eyes. This condition is called heterochromia.
  4. Our eyes remain the same size from birth, unlike our nose and ears which continue to grow throughout our lives.
  5. An iris has 256 unique characteristics. To put this in perspective, a fingerprint has only 40 unique characteristics. This is why retina scans are becoming increasingly popular for security.
  6. Age-related diseases such as macular degeneration, diabetes, and glaucoma are the primary causes of blindness for adults in the United States.
  7. Eye transplants are currently impossible due to the sensitivity of the optic nerve.
  8. Each of our eyes has a small blind spot in the back of the retina where the optic nerve attaches, but we don’t notice a hole in our vision because our eyes work together to compensate.
  9. The pupil of the human eye expands as much as 45 percent when you look at someone you love.
  10. One in every 12 men is color blind, and all babies are color blind when they are born.

Protect your eyes from injury

Protect your eyes from injury

Did you know that most eye injuries happen during everyday activities? We rarely think about protecting our eyes when we work in the garage, kitchen or yard – but nearly half of all eye injuries happen at home. Sports and recreational activities are another common setting, factoring into about 40 percent of all eye injuries.

When to use protective eyewear

Luckily, the vast majority of serious eye injuries can be prevented by wearing protective eyewear. Always wear protective eyewear when you are:

  • Using common household cleaners
  • Doing housework that involves hammering, sanding or working with power tools
  • Playing a sport where eye protection is recommended
  • Working in the yard (for example: mowing, trimming weeds and cutting branches)
  • Working with metal, drywall, wood, or any other materials that create a lot of dust

How to choose the right eyewear for you

If possible, choose protective eyewear approved by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI).  ANSI-approved eyewear has thicker lenses which are shatter resistant, and can help prevent injuries from impact, chemical splashes and similar hazards. All ANSI-approved eyewear are marked with a stamp on the frame and lenses. You may want to double-check your safety eyewear to make sure it meets ANSI standards.

For sport eyewear, you can start by checking out the National Eye Institute’s eye protection recommendations for any sports you play.

For any eye protection needs, talking to your optometrist about your specific situation is the best way to ensure you get the right style and a good fit. Your optometrist can then help you order either prescription or non-prescription protective eyewear that meets your needs.

If you have questions about how to keep your eyes safe while working or playing, you’re welcome to stop by our vision clinic or give us a call. We’ll help you talk through your options for protective eyewear and figure out what’s right for you!


Simplify your contact lens care routine

Close up of contact disinfectant

Taking good care of your contact lenses is the single best way to prevent eye infections.  The good news: contact lens care takes only a few minutes as part of your daily routine!

To simplify your routine, we’ve broken down how to care for your contacts into five easy steps.

Step 1: Wash your hands

Whether you’re putting in your contacts or taking them out, first wash your hands and dry them with a lint-free towel.  Be sure to use a mild soap with no lotion, perfume or oil, since these can leave a film on your hands.

Step 2: Clean your contacts

It’s important to clean your contacts when you take them out at night before placing them in disinfectant. Put a contact in the palm of your hand and add a few drops of a preservative-free saline solution (try Simply Saline or PuriLens). Then, gently rub the contact using your index finger.

Why clean your lenses this way in addition to using disinfectant? Think of it like washing dishes. Hot water and soap alone can dissolve some grease and food, but it helps to scrub dishes with a sponge or brush as well. Disinfectant removes bacteria and some protein from your lenses, but using saline and your finger first will be more effective for breaking down protein build-ups that can irritate your eyes.

Step 3: Disinfect your contacts

Always use the disinfectant recommended by your eye care professional! Most optometrists suggest using a peroxide-based disinfectant such as Peroxiclear or Clearcare. These solutions are stronger and more effective than multi-purpose solutions.

Be sure to carefully follow the manufacturer’s instructions and avoid getting any of the solution in your eyes. If your lenses have been stored in a case for longer than seven days, you’ll want to disinfect them again.

Step 4: Put in your contacts

Before putting your contacts in, you can rinse them with your preservative-free saline solution. This step can be especially helpful for new contact wearers or anyone who experiences discomfort from disinfectant left behind on the lenses.

If you use hairspray, use it before putting in your contacts. And if you wear makeup, wait to apply until after you’ve put in your contacts to avoid getting it on your lenses.

After putting your contacts in, empty the disinfecting solution from the case, rinse it with hot water and let it air dry.

Step 5: Replace contacts and your case

Wear and replace your contact lenses according to the schedule prescribed by your eye care provider. If you’re not a regular contact wearer, consider getting daily disposable lenses.

Make sure to replace your contact case every three months. Most disinfectants come with a new case, which will remind you to replace yours.

Following these simple steps will extend the life of your contact lenses and protect your eyes. If you need saline solution or a disinfectant, or just have questions about how to care for your contacts, stop by our vision clinic!

3 common lens cleaning mistakes

Student cleaning eyeglass lenses

It’s easy to accidentally damage your glasses when you’re cleaning them. Thankfully, by avoiding these common mistakes you can keep your glasses in great condition!

1) Wiping lenses without rinsing them first

If you don’t start by rinsing your lenses, you may be wiping around dust or debris and scratching your glasses. Always start with warm water or spray cleaners designed for lenses. You can also use a mild dish soap on tough smudges.

However, be careful to avoid any dish soap with added lotion, which can leave a film. Also, avoid household cleaners like Windex, because these can damage the coatings on your lenses.

2) Using paper products or your T-shirt to dry lenses

Paper products such as napkins, paper towels or tissues are made of wood fibers and can cause scratches. Try to break the habit of using your T-shirt, even if it’s cotton. It only takes a little dirt or dust to scratch your glasses.

Some people like to air dry their glasses after washing, but minerals in the water can leave spots behind. A soft, clean, lint-free cloth made of cotton or microfiber is your best option for drying lenses.

3) Holding glasses by the arms to clean them

It’s best to hold your glasses firmly by the bridge to avoid accidentally bending them. Always lay them down with the lenses facing upward and store them in a hard-shell case.

Avoiding these mistakes and washing your glasses at least once a day will help you see clearer! Come visit us at the vision clinic if you need to pick up some spray cleaner for your lenses.