4317 Factoria Blvd SE Ste A
Bellevue, WA 98006

Mon-Fri 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.

September 22nd, 2014
Exciting New Options for Keratoconu
The past few years have brought exciting advancements for contact lenses for keratoconus and other irregular corneas.
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June 2nd, 2014
Update on contact lenses for irregu
So many exciting advancements in contact lenses for irregular corneas within the past few years! If your have irregular...
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Eye  Condition  FAQ

What is nearsightedness?

Nearsighted people generally see quite well at near range, and see worse at far distances. Also known as myopia, nearsightedness is the most common reason that people wear full time glasses, contacts, or undergo laser eye surgery.
Myopia is caused by stronger than necessary focusing components of the eye. Instead of light focusing in the back of the eye, at the retina, light focuses too soon, blurring far objects. Using the natural focusing muscles only adds to the blur. Lenses that correct nearsightedness are thicker at the edges and thinner in the center.


What is farsightedness?

Farsightedness, (hyperopia) is the opposite of nearsightedness. Farsighted people can see well in the distance, but vision may be more blurred as objects get closer to them. This occurs when the focusing system allows light to focus behind the retina. Since the focusing muscles can be used to reduce the blur of hyperopia, farsighted people can make up for some of the blur with focusing effort.
Hyperopic lenses are thicker in the center and thinner at the edges.


What is astigmatism?

Astigmatism is the term for when one of the focusing surfaces of the eye has two curves to it, making it more football shaped. (As opposed to basketball shaped like those eyes without astigmatism). When an image enters the eye with uncorrected astigmatism, portions of the image will be focused in two different locations in the eye causing blurry vision.
Astigmatism can usually be corrected with glasses, contacts, or laser eye surgery. Although more complicated than eyes with myopia and hyperopia, patients with astigmatism are generally correctable to good vision.


What is presbyopia?

Presbyopia is the loss of near vision that almost all people notice around the age of 40 to 50. This is caused by a loss of flexibility of the natural lens in the eye. The muscles attached to the lens, as well as the lens itself change so that it is no longer able to focus light of close objects. This explains the common use of reading glasses for older adults.
Glasses and contacts may work to correct presbyopia. Laser eye surgery may be used to help, but often does not fully correct presbyopia.


Why Does My Eye Twitch?

Mild twitching of the eyelid is a common phenomenon. Although these involuntary contractions of muscles are annoying, they are almost always temporary and completely harmless. The medical name for this kind of twitching is ocular myokymia. It is quite common and most often associated with fatigue. When your eye is twitching, it is not visible to anyone else. Optometrists often are asked what causes the twitching and what can be done to stop it. Lack of sleep, too much caffeine or increased stress seem to be root causes. Often, gently massaging your eye will relieve the symptoms. Usually, the twitch will disappear after catching up on your sleep.


What is visual acuity?/What does 20/20 mean?

Acuity is the measure of the eye's ability to distinguish the smallest identifiable letter or symbol, its details and shape, usually at a distance of 20 feet. This measurement is usually given in a fraction. The top number refers to the testing distance measured in feet and the bottom number is the distance from which a normal eye should see the letter or shape. So, perfect vision is 20/20. If your vision is 20/60, that means what you can see at a distance of 20 feet, someone with perfect vision can see at a distance of 60 feet.


What is legal blindness?

You are legally blind when the best corrected central acuity is less than 20/200 (perfect visual acuity is 20/20) in your better eye, or your side vision is narrowed to 20 degrees or less in your better eye. Even if you are legally blind, you may still have some useful vision. If you are legally blind, you may qualify for certain government benefits.


Is pink-eye contagious?

Yes, viral conjunctivitis (pink-eye) is very common and is extremely contagious. Avoid touching eyes with your hands, wash hands frequently, do not share towels, and avoid work, school or daycare activities for a least five days or as long as discharge is present.


Why have I gradually found it harder to read without glasses?

The ability to focus on near objects decreases steadily with age and is referred to as presbyopia. Presbyopia is a natural aging of the lens. This often occurs around the age of 40, when glasses or contact lenses are prescribed to correct this condition.


Why are quality sunglasses important?

Poor quality sunglasses that simply reduce the amount of glare reaching the eye without, blocking any harmful rays are enormously harmful to eye health. Because poor quality sunglasses allow the pupil to dilate they actually increase the amount of dangerous radiation that can enter and injure the eye. This damage is cumulative, and can accrue over the course of years. So it may be more dangerous to wear poor quality sunglasses than to wear no sunglasses.


What is a cataract?

When the lens inside the eye becomes cloudy we call it a cataract. When the cataract advances it can give the effect of looking through a dirty window. Cataracts can be removed with surgery. Cataract is a normal ageing change, although some factors can enhance cataract formation such as; UV exposure, smoking, the use of certain medications, and trauma.

Treatment of cataract usually consists of monitoring and eventual surgical removal. Cataract surgery is a simple out-patient procedure that quickly restores vision. The implant is customized to allow vision at any distance the patient desires. Multi-focal lenses are also available.


What is glaucoma?

Glaucoma is nerve damage in the eye caused by pressure of the fluid inside the eye. Left untreated, glaucoma can cause blindness. Glaucoma has no symptoms until the disease process is fairly advanced. This is one of the reasons people should have routine eye examinations approximately every 1 to 2 years…even if they have no vision complaints.

We evaluate the main eye nerve (the optic nerve) for the effects of high pressure at each comprehensive exam. We also check the pressure in the eye at each yearly visit. We don’t use the air puff instrument at Factoria Eye Clinic. We use several state of the art methods of getting accurate readings. If several risks factors are discovered, additional tests may be ordered to check for the function of the optic nerve or the structure of the nerve.

If glaucoma is caught early, patients stand a very good chance of keeping excellent vision throughout their lives.

Call our offices in Bellevue 425-641-2020 or email us to schedule an eye exam appointment.