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Foods Rich In Vitamin C Help Curb Cataracts

Foods Rich In Vitamin C Help Curb Cataracts

Thursday, August 27, 2020
Author Montgomery Eye

Tags cataracts

Cataracts are a clouding of the eye's lens that happens naturally with age. The condition is the leading cause of blindness in the world, according to the World Health Organization.

Researchers from King's College London examined data from more than 1,000 pairs of female twins to see what factors may help keep cataracts at bay. They tracked the intake of vitamin C and other nutrients from food and supplements. They also recorded how opaque the subjects' lenses were at around age 60, with a follow-up on 324 sets of twins about ten years later.

Women who reported consuming more vitamin C-rich foods had a 33 percent risk reduction of cataract progression over the decade, according to the study. Their lenses were also more transparent overall.

"While we cannot totally avoid developing cataracts, we may be able to delay their onset and keep them from worsening significantly by eating a diet rich in vitamin C," said study author Christopher Hammond, M.D., professor of ophthalmology at King's College London. The researchers noted that the findings only pertain to vitamins consumed through food and not supplements.

Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant. The fluid inside the eyeball usually is high in a compound similar to vitamin C, which helps prevent oxidation that results in a clouded lens. Scientists believe more vitamin C in the diet may increase the amount present around the lens, providing extra protection.

Because the study was done in twins, the team was also able to calculate how much of a role genetics versus environmental factors play in cataract progression. While environmental factors, such as diet, accounted for 65 percent, genetic factors only accounted for 35, indicating that diet and lifestyle may outweigh genetics.

The human body cannot produce or store vitamin C. Therefore, it's essential to consume Vitamin C rich food regularly in sufficient amounts. The current daily value (DV) for vitamin C is 90 mg. A diet rich in vitamin C is an essential step toward good overall health and cataract prevention.

To learn more about your eye health call 334-271-3804 today to schedule an appointment.

The study, "Genetic and Dietary Factors Influencing the Progression of Nuclear Cataract," was published in Ophthalmology, the official journal of the American Academy of Ophthalmology.


 

June is Cataract Awareness Month!

Friday, June 12, 2020

Prevent Blindness America has declared June to be Cataract Awareness Month, an initiative aimed at raising awareness of and advocating for education on cataract risk factors, symptoms, and treatments. preventblindness.org/cataract-awareness-month-2020

The number of Americans with cataracts are expected to be 38.5 million by 2032 and 45.6 million by 2050, according to Prevent Blindness America.

Cataracts are the leading cause of vision loss in the United States, and it is the leading cause of blindness in the world. There are 24 million Americans over the age of 40 who are affected by cataracts.

How Do Cataracts Form?

In a healthy eye, our lenses are filled with proteins that line up to be perfectly transparent. However, over time, they can clump together and become opaque, creating a cataract. The rest of the eye can be completely healthy, but a cataract can block some or all of the light from reaching the retina.

What Are The Symptoms Of Cataracts?

Cataracts can start small and subtle, so it’s not always evident that a cataract is developing. Over time, you may begin to notice the following symptoms:

  • Faded or yellowed colors
  • Reduced night vision
  • Light sensitivity and increased glare
  • Halo effect around lights
  • Dim, cloudy, or blurry vision
  • More frequent glasses prescription changes
  • Double vision in a single eye

Cataract Risk Factors

The main risk factor for cataracts is advancing age, but other factors can make them more likely to develop earlier. These include diabetes, smoking, a family history of cataracts, exposure to UV radiation over time, high blood pressure, previous inflammation or injury in an eye, previous eye surgery, obesity, excessive alcohol consumption, and prolonged use of corticosteroid medication.

The Good News: Cataracts Are Treatable

In the early stages, cataract symptoms can be combated with a stronger glasses prescription, but eventually, glasses or contacts won’t be enough. Luckily, cataract surgery is performed more often than any other surgery in the US. It’s low-risk, simple, and routine, involving one short procedure on each eye. Even better, if you have other vision problems like astigmatism, cataract surgery might fix that too!

How Is Your Eye Health? We ask because WE CARE.

If you’ve noticed changes in your vision, schedule an appointment at Montgomery Eye Physicians (334)271-3804 so we can check for cataracts and make sure your eyes are healthy.

UV Rays Versus Healthy Vision

UV Rays Versus Healthy Vision

Tuesday, June 02, 2020
Author Montgomery Eye

We are on the heels of summer! Post COVID-19 this summer will be different than what we have experienced in previous summers. While you follow safety guidelines from the CDC and local health departments including proper social distancing. There will still be fun times spent outdoors, but it also means more exposure to harmful UV rays. Are you prepared with the proper sun protection?

UV Rays Versus Healthy Vision

Even being careful not to look directly at the sun, just being outside for extended periods can be enough to get sunburns on our eyes. These are called photokeratitis, and symptoms include redness, a grainy feeling when blinking, light sensitivity, tearing, and blurred vision. In snowy areas, photokeratitis is often called “snow blindness,” but it is also a problem spending extended amounts of time outside in the summer.

Long term, UV exposure can have cumulative effects on our vision, including increasing the risk of developing sight-threatening conditions like macular degeneration and cataracts. We also become more vulnerable to pterygium or “surfer’s eye” (an overgrowth of the clear tissue of the whites of the eyes towards the iris) and pinguecula (white or yellow bumps that form in the whites of the eyes).

Wear Sunglasses to Protect Your Eyesight from UV Rays

The first priority should be to have a pair of sunglasses and make sure they offer full UV protection. Check the label to see if your sunglasses block at least 99% of UVA and UVB rays. Large lenses are also a good idea because they offer more coverage. Polarized lenses provide even better protection because they eliminate the glare from sunlight bouncing off surfaces around us, including other cars and the surface of the water.

Other Tips for UV Protection

In addition to always wearing sunglasses when outside during the day, there are other things you can do to keep your eyes (and skin) safe from the sun:

  • Minimize the time you spend in the sun during the brightest hours of the day (10 a.m. to 4 p.m.).
  • Wear wide-brimmed hats for additional shade.
  • Use sunscreen!

Please contact Montgomery Eye at (334) 271-3804 to discuss your eye health.

Practice Safe Hygiene

Practice Safe Hygiene

Tuesday, May 26, 2020
Author Montgomery Eye

While practicing social distancing as our state has begun reopening in phases, we have to be mindful of practicing safe hygiene. According to the CDC one of the general guidelines to slow the spread of COVID-19, avoid touching your face — particularly your eyes, nose, and mouth. Visit the The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to learn more about other general guidelines to slow the spread of COVID-19.

Most of us rub our eyes many times in the day without really thinking about it.

Whether we’re tired, our eyes feel dry or itchy, or there’s something stuck in one of them, it seems like the easiest way to make it feel better is to rub them a little. Unfortunately, doing that is a great way to spread germs from our fingers to our eyes.

The Germs on Our Skin and Hands

Many types of microorganisms live on our skin all the time, including on our faces and hands. This microscopic ecosystem is known as “skin flora,” and it can contain around a thousand species of bacteria, as well as viruses and other germs. Some are beneficial, while others could lead to disease or infection, especially if they get into our eyes.

The Eye’s Natural Defenses

Eyes are more vulnerable than skin to disease and infection-causing germs, but they aren’t defenseless. The eyelashes help to keep irritants out, as does the simple action of blinking. Next, the tear film is a three-layer drainage system to protect the cornea from germs and debris that actually reach the eye’s surface. However, when we rub our eyes, we may accidentally cause tiny injuries to the cornea, giving germs an opening to get inside and cause an infection.

Protecting Our Eyes from Germs

Sometimes, touching our eyes is unavoidable. People who wear contact lenses obviously have to touch their eyes every time they insert and remove them. On the whole, it’s best to keep contact to a minimum, but at the very least, we should be thoroughly washing our hands with soap prior to touching our eyes.

It’s especially important to keep fingernails trimmed to prevent the transfer of germs to our eyes. All kinds of germs and debris collect under them from everything else we touch throughout the day, and it is almost impossible to clean them well enough when they’re long. In fact, germs collecting under fingernails is the main reason medical professionals wear gloves when interacting with patients! This goes for fake nails just as much as natural ones.

Worried About an Eye Infection? Let Us Know!

If you’re experiencing any symptoms like redness, itchiness, tenderness, burning, or a lot of eye-watering, they could be signs of an eye infection. Please give us a call 334-271-3804, so we can discuss the next steps to ensure that your eyes are healthy, and try not to touch them as little as possible in the meantime.

The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.

Feeling the Effects of Screen Time on Your Eyes? Here Are 6 Ways to Help

Thursday, May 21, 2020

As life has shifted all of our lives due to COVID-19, people are using technology more than ever to stay connected. Many people are working from home and participating in video conferences, completing courses through e-learning, reading digital books, and binge-watching TV shows that everyone is talking about. They are also browsing social media or online shopping more than ever before. There is no denying that screens are a significant part of our lives, and they will continue to be.

It’s a feeling familiar to so many: tired, uncomfortable eyes following extended screen time.

Although there are many benefits to these advancements in technology, their use can also cause eye tiredness, dryness, headaches, blurred vision, and neck and shoulder pain symptoms characteristic of a condition called digital eye fatigue.

Regardless of how you’re using your digital devices, here are six tips to help combat digital eye fatigue:

  1. Take a 20-20-20 break. Every 20 minutes, look at something 20 feet away for 20 seconds.
  2. Remind yourself to blink often, as it helps with dry eye symptoms.
  3. Reduce overhead lighting to eliminate screen glare and adjust the brightness of your screen or device to a level that is comfortable for you.
  4. Set up your workstation ergonomically by adjusting the screen to be slightly below eye level and sit an arm’s distance away from your screen.
  5. Increase the text size on devices so you can see the content better.
  6. Clean your screen regularly to ensure better visibility and reduce stress on the eyes.

Following these practices will allow you to stay productive while keeping your eyes feeling comfortable. Give yourself the gift of clear vision and schedule your appointment with Montgomery Eye Physicians today.

We are OPEN for your eye health needs

Wednesday, May 13, 2020

Safe Places, Trusted Care

Montgomery Eye has a long-standing commitment to the eye care health needs of our communities. Your safety is our highest priority. Montgomery Eye is committed to giving you a safe, reliable place to receive eye care.

Reopening Our Clinics and Services

Thanks to the efforts of Alabama residents to practice social distancing, effectively controlling the spread of the virus, we can begin offering broader services to meet the eye care needs to patients.

How We’re Keeping Patients Safe During the COVID-19 Recovery

Guided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and local government, we have taken several steps in addition to our standard infection control measures to ensure our practice remains a safe place for you to receive care confidently.

In-Person Appointments and Procedures

For some of our patients, being seen in-person or scheduled for surgery. Our commitment to you is to provide the care you need, when you need it, as safely and conveniently as possible. Each patient’s circumstances will be evaluated by their doctor to determine how soon that patient should return for in-person care or a scheduled procedure, or if their care needs could be handled through TeleMedicine.

Restricting Guests

We are restricting guests to reduce the number of people in our practice to eliminate the risk of exposure between patients and staff. We are asking that patients do not bring guests or family members with you to our office. Please have them wait in the car. We understand this can be difficult and appreciate your understanding.

Masks and Hand Sanitizer

  • Masks for Staff: All staff wear masks. The type of mask staff members wear is determined by the type of care they provide best to ensure their safety and the safety of our patients.
  • Masks for Patients: All patients are asked to wear a mask or cloth face covering while in our office.
  • Hand Sanitizer: Hand sanitizer is available at numerous locations throughout the office. Everyone is asked to sanitize their hands when they enter the building. Also, each member of our health care staff sanitizes their hands before and after each patient encounter.

Cleaning and Reorganization

  • Common Areas: Areas such as waiting rooms, lobbies, and restrooms are cleaned often with special attention to frequently touched surfaces, including doorknobs, armrests, and handrails.
  • Exam Rooms: These are thoroughly cleaned and disinfected between each patient.
  • Floor Markings and Furniture Rearrangement: We have made special arrangements to support social distancing. You may see markers on the floors to show where people should stand for check-in and check-out. We have rearranged furniture in our waiting area to create more space between patients, and are scheduling appointments to ensure that fewer people are in our office at any given time. We have also removed all magazines and books from the waiting area.

Give us a call at (334) 271-3804 and our staff will schedule you for an in-office or telemedicine visit.

Important Message to Eye Care Patients - Planning Ahead for your Appointment - Post COVID-19

Wednesday, April 29, 2020

Our office is run by a smart, experienced team that strives to make your experience great even during these unfamiliar times. We are here and available with safety and precautions to detect problems earlier, manage conditions more effectively, and preserve your eye health.

These are the precautions we are taking for the health and safety of our patients, doctors, staff, and community.

  • Prior to scheduling ANY appointments, all calls will be screened for established risk factors of COVID-19.
  • We are asking that you do not bring guests or family members with you to our office. Please have them wait in the car.
  • All employees before their shift will have their temperature checked and recorded daily. Our staff will only be present if they and their households are healthy and symptom-free.
  • Social distancing is being practiced in our waiting room to ensure your safety.
  • We are asking that you please wear a face mask or a cloth face-covering in our office as a precaution and protection of your health. Any patient refusing to comply with the face-covering request will be rescheduled to another date and time.
  • We continue to sterilize, sanitize, and disinfect all touchpoints in our office throughout the day and all equipment, patient areas, after every use and between all patients.
  • Hand sanitizer stations are available at multiple locations throughout the office.
  • We recommend you to use our virtual check-in/out, if possible.

Using state-of-the-art technology, our doctors will map, measure, and monitor changes to your eye anatomy and health. Call us today for guidance in the following situations:

  • You have an eye disease (such as macular degeneration or diabetes-related retinopathy) and receive regular eye injections
  • You have any vision treatments
  • You suddenly lose or notice changes in your vision (such as blurred vision, wavy areas of vision, or blank spots in your field of vision)
  • You notice a lot of new floaters or flashes of light in your vision
  • You have eye pain, red or dry eye

We truly value you as a patient, and our team is available to discuss your eye health and fulfill our mission of protecting your sight and empowering lives – while keeping you, our staff, and our community safe.

Coronavirus: How We’re Taking Precautions

Tuesday, March 17, 2020

Tags coronavirus, covid 19

 

The safety of our patients and staff is of the utmost importance to Montgomery Eye Physicians; therefore, in light of the issues surrounding COVID-19, commonly referred to as Coronavirus, we wanted to let our patients know about the precautionary steps we are taking. 

 

Our leadership team pro-actively developed a plan to deal with COVID-19; we believe preparing our staff and providing information to patients are positive steps to avoid spreading the virus.

 

  • Patients are being asked to reschedule their appointments if they have a respiratory infection, fever, or if they have traveled outside the US in the previous 30 days.

  • Team members who have respiratory issues or fever are instructed to stay at home.

  • We have removed magazines in all waiting rooms, for now, to avoid having items that are shared among patients.

  • For further protection, patients are being asked to wear a mask upon arrival to our offices if they are recovering from cold symptoms.  Any patient with fever is asked not to enter the office and to call prior to the visit.

 

While the overall risk of COVID-19 to the general public remains low, elderly people and individuals with chronic medical conditions may have increased risk for COVID-19. The best prevention measures for any respiratory virus are:

 

  • Wash your hands often with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer. 

  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands. 

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick. 

  • Stay home when you are sick.

  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash. 

  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces. 

 

We encourage you to take steps to protect you and your family; if you are concerned that you have been exposed to COVID-19 or if you have symptoms, please see your physician to be tested – and be sure to follow their guidelines to avoid spreading the virus. 


If you have any questions or concerns related to COVID-19 and an upcoming appointment at our office, please call us at
334-271-3804.

 

  • Please understand that Montgomery Eye Physicians is not a governing body, and we encourage our patients to use the following official resources to find current information on appropriate courses of action and to track new cases:

  • World Health Organization (WHO) Rights, Roles & Responsibilities of Health Workers

  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Interim Guidance for COVID-19

  • OSHA Guidance on Workplace Preparation for COVID-19

  • COVID-19 Global Cases Live Map by the CSSE at Johns Hopkins University

  • Events Council Discussion of Insurance and Legal Considerations for Event Professionals