Contact Lens Fitting; What To Expect

When it’s time to start wearing contacts, you’ll need to have a Contact Lens Fitting. What does this entail and what should you expect?

In one of our most recent blogs, we talked about the difference between soft and hard contacts. At the very beginning of that blog, we mentioned that we only fit lenses that are healthy for the patient and provide the most comfortable wearing experiences. We wanted to dive a little deeper into this subject and discuss what exactly goes into a proper lens fitting. We want to give you a better idea of what you might expect when visiting our offices to get your contacts!

Please know that we do not offer generic brand contacts and do not fit lenses that have an increased incidence of eye infections. Our physicians and staff will walk you through an extensive patient history to pick which lens material, wear schedule, sleep schedule, and replacement schedule is right for you and your new contacts. Our physicians and contact lens technicians are trained with many different types of lenses including Air Optix, Proclear, Acuvue Oasys, and more! They are also trained in providing multiple types of contact lens designs; Spherical, Toric, and Multi-Focal.

The Appointment

Is it time for contacts? Then it’s time for a contact lens fitting. This is more than just a general eye exam, and it will have a different flow of procedure. Make sure to plan efficient time for this appointment, and give yourself at least an hour to spend with us. Don’t rush through this appointment, especially if it’s your first experience wearing contacts. During your appointment, you will be spending time with our staff and doctors to evaluate which contact lenses are the best for the shape of your eyes, your lifestyle, and what you do for a living. Once a contact is chosen, they will make sure it covers your eye properly, moves as it should, if it causes any surface problems, and if they cause any issue with your cornea. Our staff will also spend time to ensure that you know how to put in and take out your contacts, that you feel comfortable with using them, and that you know how to clean them properly. You will receive a complimentary pair of lenses and any care needed within the first three months of your first fitting. This is generally 1-3 visits.  

What Else To Expect

While a contact lens fitting is different from a normal eye appointment, there are similar features. Your doctor will still check on the overall health of your eye, you will put test contacts in your eyes after a prescription has been determined, and you will spend time getting used to the feel of the contact in your eye. Your doctor will spend time analyzing the shape and condition of your eyes, their specific needs, and your lifestyle before having you put in a pair for the first time. They aren’t going to rush their choice, so the first or second pair will most likely be the best fit for you. Please make sure to speak up if you’re not comfortable with the choices provided. We will make sure to work with you to find the best option possible.

Be Prepared

Contact and glasses fittings are two very different things. Glasses are measured and picked to sit away from your eyes while contacts are measured to sit right on the surface of your eyes. Be prepared to talk about different types of contacts. Your doctor could walk you through the pros and cons of soft and hard contacts. Also, be prepared to discuss the future of your contacts and how you want them to help your changing eyesight over time. When coming into a fitting, if you already wear glasses, bring those with you. Do not wear eye makeup. This will allow your contacts to stay clean as you put them and take them out.

We hope our last few blogs dedicated to contacts have been eye-opening. We hope this helps you feel more confident in making this step if it appears in your future. We are always here to answer any questions you might have and to discuss your best options. We are always here to support you and your family! As we begin to head back to some sense of normal, continue to stay safe. Until next time, we are here for all of your eye care needs!

Is Screen-Time Affecting Your Child’s Eyesight?

With the world making us spend more time indoors, our smart devices are being used more than ever. How is this changing and affecting your child’s eyesight? 

The last few months have been dedicated to getting through them safely and staying as healthy as possible. With schools closing and spending so much time at home, we have all be spending more time on our smart devices. Our children finished their school year online, stayed in touch with their friends virtually, and stayed active by participating in online activities. How is this screentime affecting their eyes? Before the pandemic made its appearance tablets, phones, and other smart devices were becoming more popular with younger generations. The discussion debating what this was doing to young eyes, and how it could affect them later down the line, had already begun. Now that these smart objects have become necessities, how will they continue to affect our children’s eyes? How can we protect them?  

Screentime can go beyond harming your eyesight. It can also begin to disturb your sleep patterns. Children need a lot of sleep every day to help with growth and development. Messing with this can interfere with their progress.  When children are tired, they also may have more tantrums, difficulty focusing at school or on everyday tasks, and have a weaker immune system. Plus, a tired child leads to tantrums, not being able to focus at school or during everyday tasks, and can affect their immune system. There is a blue light that is emitted from your phone and smart screens that when looked at in the evening, can trick the brain into thinking it’s daytime. This will shift the body’s circadian rhythm. Movies and video games can also give off this blue light. When it’s getting close to bedtime, start winding down without any devices. It is recommended that you don’t keep or use any smart devices in your child’s room for this reason. 

Too much screentime can lead to irritated and dry eyes. Staring at a screen for long periods can cause the eyes to blink less often. This denies the eyes of staying properly lubricated. It can also cause the eyes to become tired and strained, which puts a lot of pressure on young eyes. It can also damage the flexibility of your child’s eyes, as they remain stationary to a screen or item up close. Thankfully this is not a permanent issue, but it can be very frustrating for our little ones. Headaches can also become an issue, while temporary, they can return frequently and be very painful. Neck pain, double vision, head pain, burning and itchy eyes, fatigue, and loss of focus can also appear in children who spend too much time staring at their screens. 

According to the American Optometric Association, 41% of parents say their kids spend at least 3 hours a day on their digital devices. The same study shows that 66% of kids have their own tablets or smartphones. The pandemic has changed how children are learning. They are using their eyes in different ways and putting new demands on their bodies. To help with social standing and keep their children entertained, parents have also relaxed their strict rules about how long their children can stay on these devices on days when their children have to be indoors. This additional screentime can begin to cause other issues, such as nearsightedness. Glasses and contacts can correct this issue, but having very severe nearsightedness can indicate more serious issues down the line; it can lead to macular degeneration, retinal detachment, and glaucoma. 

How to Help: 

  • Take more time to play outdoors and as a family.  
  • Make clear rules about how long your children can watch TV, play video games, be on the computer, be on their phones, and when. Make sure they know when they’re allowed to use them for fun and when they need to be used as educational tools. 
  • Make a “no screen rule” together, where no one is allowed on their phones. For example, having no screen time at the dinner table, out to eat, or while you’re driving. 
  • If your children have to work on their smart devices, make sure they take a 20-second break every 20 minutes. Have them get up and stretch and look at something different father away from the screens they were looking at. 
  • Remind your children to blink while they’re working. 
  • Switch up the media your children are using. If they are reading online, have them alternate between the screen and an actual book. 
  • Try to not use computers outside. Natural light reflected by the screen can be damaging to the eyes. 
  • Promote good posture with your children while they’re working at the computer or any smart device. Make their workspace comfortable and supportive during long hours of work. Have a desk and chair that supports them, keeps their posture up, and is comfortable. 

We hope this gave you a better idea of how long screen times can affect your children’s eyes and what you can be doing to help prevent issues in the future. If you have any questions or worries, please don’t hesitate to reach out. We are here to support you and your family! As we begin to head back to some sense of normal, continue to stay safe. Until next time, we are here for all of your eye care needs! 

Soft Vs. Hard Contacts; What’s the Difference?

Curious about the perfect contact for your eyes? We are here with all of the information you need to know! 

Your eye care journey can be an interesting one. You might make many different choices and changes over the years. Sometimes something that worked for you in the beginning, won’t always last the whole lifespan of needing contacts and glasses. That’s ok! Needing to make the switch from soft to hard contacts? Have you never worn contacts before? Are you making the switch from glasses to contacts? Have no fear! All your answers are here! Here at Ocean Eye, we only fit lenses that are healthy for the patient and provide the most comfortable wearing experience. 

Making the switch to contacts or wearing contacts isn’t for everyone. Making the choice is a very personal one and one you need to take very seriously. Sometimes this decision is based on pure need. Contacts can help you stay safe while being active, working, driving, and beyond. Other times, wearing contacts is just the preferred look of the wearer. Whatever choice you make, make sure you are taking proper care to clean, store, and wear your contacts correctly. Make sure you wear them as prescribed, and change them when it’s time. Make sure that if you don’t know how to put in or care for your contacts that a professional shows you how. 

We are here to help you pick out your perfect contacts. Some contacts you only wear once and replace every day. Others can be worn up to a whole month. There are different types of contacts out there too. The type you wear will be recommended to you based on comfort, need, and eye shape. The most common types of contacts are soft and rigid gas permeable contacts. Rigid gas permeable contacts are also referred to as hard contacts. What’s the difference between the two? What are some of the pros and cons? What are some tips to help to wear and care for both? In today’s blog, that is what we will be discussing! 


Soft contacts first made their appearance in the optic world in the early 70’s. This type of contact is known as the most comfortable and the easiest to wear between the two. They are also the most commonly prescribed by doctors. They are made of light, soft, and very flexible silicone hydrogel. They mold to the shape of your eyes and stay put. The plastic allows oxygen to pass through the cornea, which promotes both comfort and the overall good health of your eyes. They are easy to get used to for first-time wearers and long term wearers. They can help with nearsightedness, farsightedness, and more. Daily contacts that you throw out after one use don’t need to be cleaned. You can also get soft contacts that come with tints and bifocals. They are also more difficult to pop out of your eye than RGP contacts, which ensures that you lose them less frequently! 

  • Disadvantages: 
    • Your vision might not be as sharp compared to RGP contacts. 
    • They do wear out and need to be replaced frequently. 
    • They are less durable than hard contacts. 
    • They do not correct every eye problem. 
  • Tips for Wearing: 
    • Wash and dry your hands before putting them in and taking them out. 
    • Clean your case every day and let it dry. 
    • Clean, rinse, and disinfect them after every use. 
    • Always use the proper drops and solutions made for your soft contacts. 
    • Don’t wear them beyond their prescribed time. 


Rigid gas permeable contacts are made out of stiff plastic that does not mold to your eye as soft contacts do, but they have a lot of other wonderful benefits. Sadly, as beneficial as they can be, hard contacts come with a bad reputation. They were very uncomfortable in their early years, but they have come a long way since the 70’s. They used to be made out of material that didn’t allow hardly any oxygen into the cornea. Today, RGP contacts allow plenty of oxygen to reach the cornea. They give the wearer very crisp and clear vision and are very durable. They have been known to help slow the development of nearsightedness and can correct most astigmatism. They are very easy to care for, they don’t get dry or dehydrate, they always keep their shape, and they can help with cornea refraction therapy. RGP contacts don’t change shape so they are always in focus. They allow more oxygen into the eyes than soft contacts do, making them the healthiest option. They are a great option for wearers who have unique eye shapes that don’t adjust to soft contacts well. They are also great for those who suffer from dry eyes. If you’ve been unsatisfied with soft contacts, consider trying RGP contact lenses instead. While it does take time to get used to them and they aren’t as comfortable, if they’re well cared for, they can last up to 2 to 3 years before needing to be replaced! 

  • Disadvantages: 
    • You have to wear them consistently for your eyes to adjust to them. 
    • They can move around more often.  
    • Debris can get under the lens. 
    • They can get scratched. 
  • Tips for Wearing: 
    • Don’t wear them while swimming or showering. This can help reduce the chance of infection. 
    • Only use solutions and drops that are specifically made for RGP contacts. 
    • Once a week, use an enzymatic cleaner to get rid of any protein buildup on the contact. 
    • Clean and store them properly every night. 
    • Don’t wear them for weeks or days at a time without cleaning. 

Picking out contacts can be a hard decision. There is a lot to consider when it’s time to make a choice. Beyond the information we provided, you also need to consider your eye conditions, your lifestyle, your budget, and which feels best in your eyes. It might take time to come to a permanent decision, but that’s okay. We are here to answer any questions or walk you through any concerns. We are here to support you and your family! As we begin to head back to some sense of normal, continue to stay safe. Until next time, we are here for all of your eye care needs! 

Eye Conditions: Age-Related Macular Degeneration

For this week’s blog, we are finishing up our series about eye conditions found in adults. We hope you’ve learned something new. We are always here for you in your eye health journey. 

Hello, everyone! This is our third and final blog in our adult eye condition series. Thank you so much for following along. Today we will be discussing Age-Related Macular Degeneration. We will be discussing its early warning signs, how you can prevent it, and its causes. 

Age-related macular degeneration – or AMD – is another cause of vision loss in those over 60. It is a disease that affects your retina and will lead to the loss of vision in the center of your eye. This is caused when a part of your retina, called the macula, wears down. The macula is located at the center of your retina. You will be able to see at the peripheral sides of your vision, but that middle part of your vision will go away. There are two types of AMD, wet and dry. Dry AMD is the most common between the two. If you have dry AMD, little clumps of frusch, or protein, grow and cause you to lose that central part of your vision. Wet AMD is much less common but more damaging to the eye. Abnormal blood vessels grow under your retina and could leak fluids or blood. This causes the macula to become scarred and damaged. This leads to the loss of that central part of your vision. It is important to continue with regular checkups with your optometrist. Many people who have this disease won’t know they have it until their vision begins to blur. It is best to catch it early to slow its progression. According to the America Degeneration Foundation, there is no cure. Research is still being conducted to find one.

The treatment for the early stages of dry AMD includes a healthy diet high in antioxidants to help support the health of the macula. This will make the chances of the macula breaking down much smaller. If dry AMD is further along, it can be treated with supplements with higher levels of minerals and vitamins. This continues to support healthy cell structure within the eye. Treatments for wet AMD are more complicated. Scientists and doctors have found some success with laser treatments. But, these treatments aren’t always guaranteed. Most would prefer to find a much better and different option. 


There are a few things you can do right now to help decrease the risk of AMD. They can also slow down the progress if you’re at high risk. 

  • Continue to get regular eye exams. 
  • Always protect your eyes when you’re outside. Wear sunglasses and a hat. 
  • Maintain a consistent and healthy exercise regime. 
  • Keep your blood pressure at a healthy level. 
  • Eat a healthy and nutritious diet to maintain a healthy weight. 
  • Don’t smoke, and quit if you already are. 


As we’ve mentioned before, pay attention to any changes in your eyes and eyesight. AMD has very specific symptoms to be aware of. 

  • You develop a sensitivity to glares. 
  • You begin having trouble seeing or reading in low light.
  • If you see blurry sections when reading. 
  • Straight lines become wavy or distorted. 
  • Your vision becomes blurry. 


Like many other conditions, there are a few facts that play into your chances of getting AMD. 

  • If your family has a history of AMD.
  • You have high blood pressure, or high blood pressure runs in the family. 
  • You are 50 years of age or older. 
  • If you are a smoker. 
  • If you’re overweight. 
  • If you have a poor diet. 

We hope you enjoyed your continued education in this blog series. After reading all three, continue to take your eye care to heart. Pay attention to all of the risk factors, be aware of your family’s health history, and follow all of the preventative health steps. Don’t forget to get regular eye exams, and call us if you haven’t made an appointment for one yet. We are here to help and support you during this potentially difficult time. As we begin to head back to some sense of normal, continue to stay safe. Until next time, we are here for all of your eye care needs! 

Eye Conditions: Glaucoma

As we continue with our most recent blog series, we are going to be discussing our second eye condition found in adults, glaucoma. 

Hello again, everyone! We hope as you read this, you remain healthy and safe. As the (online) school year has begun to wind down, have you scheduled your children’s yearly eye appointments yet? Now that the Lowcountry is slowly reopening, our appointments will begin filling up very quickly. You won’t want to miss out or wait longer than you need to get your child into their next eye appointment! The same goes for you! Don’t forget that your eyes need care and love too. Today, we are going to continue with our blog series on eye conditions found in adults. Our second topic of this series is going to be glaucoma, its early warning signs and risk factors, and how you can slow the progression or help prevent blindness or significant vision loss from the disease.

Glaucoma is one of the leading causes of blindness in people over 60. It can happen at all ages, but it is most commonly found in people over the age of 40. At this time, it can’t be prevented. If it is detected early and is treated right away, it is a condition that can be controlled. Surgery and medication can also help slow or prevent continued vision loss. Glaucoma has no warning signs.  Unless you are having regular eye appointments, it can go unnoticed until you see a drastic change in your vision as a result of glaucoma. These changes can be mild or very drastic. If you do have the condition and it is caught in time, you will most likely be able to maintain your eyesight. You will also have to continue with your glaucoma treatment for the rest of your life. 


There are multiple different types of glaucoma, each with its own scale of symptoms and severity. Glaucoma is a condition that damages the optic nerve by extremely high pressure in your eye. The optic nerve sends important signals from the eye to the brain to register and recognize what it is seeing. In its most basic and common form, primary open-angle glaucoma, the fluid pressure inside the eye increases drastically causing damage to the optic nerve over time and can lead to the loss of nerve fibers. Advanced glaucoma can lead to blindness. Right now, according to the American Optometric Association, there are many theories on what causes glaucoma, but the actual cause is still unknown. 


The symptoms that you could experience if you are developing or have glaucoma vary. Some appear without symptoms until it is very late in the process Other kinds of glaucoma have very painful and uncomfortable symptoms. The second most common form of glaucoma, acute angle-closure glaucoma, could have symptoms such as: 

  • Redness of the eyes
  • You begin to see halos around lights
  • Your vision becomes blurred
  • You experience vomiting or nausea 
  • You experience eye pain 
  • You have severe headaches

If you have developed the most common form of glaucoma, open-angle glaucoma, you might experience symptoms such as:

  • Patchy or blind spots in either your central or side vision. This will happen frequently in both of your eyes. 
  • If you’ve reached the advanced stages, you will experience tunnel vision. 

Glaucoma can be very serious. To help, there are a few things you can be doing right now to help prevent it or help to slow its process. 

  • Make sure to wear proper eye protection while working or playing sports. Serious eye damage and injury, that could have been prevented if protection had been worn, could lead to the development of glaucoma. 
  • If you have already been diagnosed and you are now taking medicine to help slow the process, make sure you take them exactly as prescribed. 
  • Maintain a healthy diet, a healthy body weight, and exercise regularly. 
  • Be knowledgeable about your family’s eye health history. It is common for it to be passed down from generation to generation, and glaucoma runs in families. If you know you’re at risk early on, you can begin watching out for it sooner, catching it as quickly as possible if it does appear. 
  • When you do have an eye examination, don’t pass on getting your eyes dilated. Having dilated eye exams regularly will allow your optometrist to give you a total comprehensive eye exam. 

To help with early detection, there is a list of risk factors that you need to be aware of. Each of these could lead to a higher probability of glaucoma appearing in your eyes. 

  • If you take steroids, and steroid eye drops for long periods of time, you could be more susceptible. 
  • Serious eye injury or eye surgery. 
  • Serious farsightedness or nearsightedness. 
  • Thin corneas. 
  • If you have diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, sickle cell anemia, you are more likely to develop glaucoma. 
  • If you have a history of glaucoma in your family. 
  • Your age: If you’re over the age of 60, be aware that you are at high risk. 
  • Your race: Glaucoma is more common to appear if you are African American, Asian, or Hispanic.

If you are over 60, have a family history of glaucoma, or any of these high-risk factors, please make sure to visit us often. If you are experiencing any changes in your eyesight or are experiencing any of the symptoms, we have listed above, please contact us. We are here to help and support you during and through this potentially difficult time. As we begin to head back to some sense of normal, continue to stay safe.  Until next time, we are here for all of your eye care needs! 

Eye Conditions: Cataracts

As our bodies grow and change over time, we start finding and feeling those creaks, cracks, and gray hairs. On top of all the things we can feel changing, we need to be aware of the changes that could be happening inside of our eyes. 

Hello everyone! It looks like many things are starting to head back to normal. We are very excited about that! We will still be following all safety protocols to help keep our staff and patients safe and healthy.  We have enjoyed talking about our youngest patients over the last few blogs, but we are going to shift our focus to our adult patients. In our office, we welcome patients of all ages. We are dedicated to helping them on their eye care journey. Over the next three blogs, we are going to talk about common eye conditions found in adults, and how you can begin preventing them now.  

The eyes are such delicate organs, and how they change and evolve is as unique as you are. As our bodies change, we start to focus on keeping it in as good health as possible. There are many changes that can happen in our bodies that we can’t see or feel until these issues have progressed. Many conditions can be prevented and cared for if detected and caught early on. To stay on top of your optic health, don’t ignore any symptoms and report them to your doctor right away. Today, we are going to begin our blog series with cataracts. 


A cataract is caused by injury to the eye or aging. They change the actual makeup of your eye’s lens. The lens lives right behind the colored part of your eye (or, the iris!) and it focuses the light that passes through your eye and creates the sharp images that you see. Over time, your lenses are no longer as flexible as they used to be. The lenses become more transparent, and they begin to grow thicker. Age, certain medical conditions, and injury can cause the tissue inside of your eye’s lens to break down. This broken-down tissue clumps together and causes a clouding effect in the lens. These clumps will continue to grow over time, blocking the light that comes into your eyes, making your vision very blurry. Thankfully, cataracts are known to grow very slowly. Cataracts can lead to blindness if they are not taken care of. Glasses can help in the beginning stages of cataracts, along with the use of brighter lights in your daily activity. Surgery is a very safe option to help correct the issue. 


If your vision ever changes drastically and without any warning, contact us right away. If the symptoms are linked to cataracts or not, you still need to get the situation checked out. You could be helping prevent a multitude of other issues. Some symptoms you could experience in the beginning stages of cataracts are:

  • Double vision in one of your eyes
  • The fading of colors in your vision, or yellowing to them
  • The need to change your glasses or contact prescription often 
  • You begin to see halos around lights
  • You need brighter light to read and do everyday tasks
  • Your eyes have a new sensitivity to light 
  • You begin having excessive difficulty seeing at night 
  • Your vision is constantly blurred or clouded 

There are a handful of things you can begin doing now to help prevent cataracts. We recommend that everyone follow these preventative steps to keep you and your eyes as healthy as possible. 

    • Visit us regularly. Even if you’ve always had healthy eyes and you’ve never needed glasses or contacts, continue to get regular checkups. 
    • If your health allows it, try and avoid taking oral steroids for long periods. Discuss this with your physician and try and find other options. 
    • Maintain your blood sugar as best you can. Take the healthy steps to avoid developing diabetes. If you already have diabetes, do you best to keep it under control. It is more likely for you to develop cataracts if you have diabetes. 
    • Limit your alcohol consumption. 
    • Limit your smoking habit, or never start in the first place. 
    • Protect your eyes from the sun, and always wear sunglasses.
    • Eat a healthy and balanced diet, maintain a healthy weight, and exercise regularly! 

These tips are geared towards keeping your eyes healthy and to prevent cataracts. They are also wonderful tips to implement into your daily life, period! Helping with the prevention of cataracts can help your health from head to toe. If you’re concerned that you might be developing cataracts, contact us right away. As always, we are here to keep your eyes healthy and happy. Until next time, stay safe and be well! 

Ten Things a Parent Should Know to Prepare for a Child Who Needs Eye Care!

Even before you became a parent, you started preparing for a life with your little one. No matter how prepared you might be, there are just some things that we have to deal with in the moment. This can cause anxiety, fear, and worry about your child’s everyday health and well being. Don’t let eye issues or first-time eyewear be a difficulty in yours or your child’s life. Take these tips and hints to prepare for a healthy and carefree life with eyewear and eye care! 

Have you seen this beautiful weather, Summerville? It’s been a joy while the world around us has been a little uneasy. Are you still having issues seeing and experiencing the world around you? Then it might be time to visit us! We are still open and very essential. Know that we are taking this situation very seriously, and are following strict guidelines to keep our offices clean, our staff and patients safe, and to make sure you keep seeing this wonderful spring down to the last green leaf and flower bud. It’s a very strange time, but don’t let your eyes suffer. We are here, and we are ready to see you! 

As the school year is coming to a very different and unique end, we wanted to continue to discuss our youngest eye patients and their journey with their optometrist. In our last two blogs, we discussed how proud we are to be apart of INFTANTsee and can provide free, and very important, eye exams for all babies one-year-old and younger. We also discussed how to help cure the woes and worries of your little one’s fears at their first optometry visits. But, there is so much that needs to be shared about pediatric eye care and the importance of educating your children on healthy and proper eye care, that we wanted to share a little bit more on the subject. We want to dedicate this blog to any parent having worries or difficulties about a child who possibly needs eye care and eyewear for the rest of their lives. We are here to help you through them, and to ease these worries. 

We can’t stress how important these early eye appointments are, or the fact that it is something we take very seriously in our offices. While your child grows and matures, it’s not just their height and age that changes and develops. Their eyes are rapidly growing and changing, and need to be cared for as delicately as possible. According to the American Optometric Association, children should receive eye exams at six months, three years, five years, and every year while they’re in school. Remember, one in every four children has some type of visual impairment. More often than not, these conditions are present with little or no symptoms from the child. Many issues that children have with their eyes that could potentially be dangerous or become an impairment in their life, can be prevented if caught and cared for at a young age. Still not convinced of the importance of pediatric optometry? Let’s see if we can change that. Here are ten things you should know about your child’s vision and how to be prepared to care for a child who needs eye care! 

  • When your child complains about eye-related issues or pain caused by not being able to see properly, listen to them. Many children at a young age don’t have the verbal skills yet to explain what is bothering them, but they know enough that something is wrong. If you’ve visited your pediatrician, and your child is still experiencing issues, don’t be alarmed. It’s just time to visit us. Be attentive, pay attention, and make an appointment! 
  • Your child has been seeing the world through their eyes exactly as they think they should be. They won’t know or understand what seeing clearly is like, until it has been caught that they haven’t been. They won’t understand that what they see is blurry, that they have been missing out on seeing every detail around them, and that it could be impacting how they’re learning at school every day. An optometrist can make seeing clearly a reality for your child in no time. 
  • At any age, parents need to be looking out for certain symptoms that could be a telltale sign that there is something wrong with your child’s eyes. These symptoms include: 
    • Chronic redness
    • Chronic tearing
    • Pupil discoloration
    • Talking about not being able to see or that their vision is blurry
    • Constant eye rubbing 
    • Constant squinting 
    • Moving close to an object to see it clearly
    • Bringing objects close to their face to see them 
    • Closing one eye while reading or watching TV
    • Having a hard time paying attention or sitting still in class, watching TV, or reading
    • If your child is experiencing any of these symptoms, please visit us right away. 
  • Do you know how your child’s growth spurts and loose teeth seem to appear overnight and always feel like a surprise? The same thing applies to your child’s eyes. These issues or symptoms can appear overnight and out of the blue as they continue to grow. It can come as a shock and surprise, but they just need to be addressed right away. 
  • Even if you and your partner don’t wear glasses, and your child isn’t showing any signs of issues with their eyes, that doesn’t mean they should be exempt from these early optometry appointments. Please follow the guidelines on scheduling your child’s optometry visits. Eye impairments can appear without any symptoms or signs and aren’t necessarily linked to parents who have good or poor eyesight. 
  • Insurance is always a tricky subject and is one that we will talk more about in the future. Insurance should never be the reason that prevents you from getting your child to an optometrist. This goes beyond having vision insurance. Most medical insurance plans will cover routine eye exams and cover any additional medical eye care for children. Double-check with your insurance provider before you assume that you and your child won’t be covered. 
  • Wearing glasses at a young age can come with a heavy stigma from society. Hearing that they “have to” wear glasses can make them sound like a punishment, and can put a lot of pressure on your child. It’s a big adjustment to learn to live with glasses and to wear them every day, so make it easier on them. Let them choose the frames they love. Help accessorize your child’s glasses to keep them playing outside, participating in their favorite sports, and splashing through the waves. Show them that glasses are a great thing and exciting to wear. Glasses are a fashion statement, something that makes them special, and something that helps them see everything in their magical world. Make sure they are measured properly for their glasses, so they fit properly on their face. This can be a difficult thing to find at a run of the mill glasses shop. We specialize in the care and treatment of children’s eyes, so this won’t be an issue you’ll run into with us. We can help you ease into helping your child wear glasses and the fact that they can see so much better now.  
  • Not only can you show and talk about how wonderful it is to wear glasses, but your child can learn about it too! We begin them on that fun journey in our offices, but there are many wonderful children’s books out there that can help them make the transition into wearing glasses, that there is nothing wrong with wearing them, and that they are not alone in wearing them. 
  • It is very common for parents not to know how important these early visits are, and so many eye issues won’t appear with symptoms or issues for your child. That’s why we are here to spread that awareness and to help you prevent any issues for your child’s vision. But, don’t feel guilty or punish yourself through the process of taking your child to the optometrist and learning that they need glasses. Your child was happy and healthy, and they still are. How could you have known they needed glasses? You are not alone in feeling guilt attached to learning this news or that your child couldn’t see properly. But, we are here to help prevent that guilt and erase any fears or worries about your child’s eyes.
  • Screentime can have a huge impact on your child’s vision. Right now, we are all spending a lot of time at home and a lot of time on our smart devices for work, school, and play. Try and limit hours on these devices and watching TV. Allow frequent breaks during the online schoolday to let your child’s eyes rest. Limiting screen time and giving these breaks can help lower the risk of nearsightedness, eye strain, and digital eye strain. 

We hope this list calms your worries and fears and helps your family start a healthy path of eye care. Being a parent is hard work, an incredible gift, and a daily rewarding challenge. We are here to help keep your family safe and healthy with the best optometry care in Summerville. If you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us. We will always be here when you need us! 

Calming Those First Appointment Woes

A child’s first appointment with the optometrist can be a scary one, but it doesn’t have to be! We are dedicated to make every visit for your child a pleasant experience to help them see their best! 

As we discussed in our last blog, we are very proud to partner with INFANTsee to help parents with children under the age of one receive free eye exams to catch any early signs of vision impairments, troubles, or conditions. All of which can be cared for, taken care of, or managed without impairing your child’s eyesight later in life. Introducing them to an optometry visit at an early age introduces them to the idea that these visits aren’t scary, and how important eye care will be throughout their whole lives. 

What do these early exams look like and what will your optometrist be looking for when you visit us? 

  • Nearsightedness, farsightedness, astigmatism, and crossed eyes or focusing issues. A lot of the time these exist with no symptoms. 
  • Amblyopia, or lazy eye. 
  • Retinoblastoma, the 7th most common form of childhood cancer. 
  • Congenital glaucoma, diabetes, hypertension, and other ocular conditions.
  • We are very proud to offer the Optos Retinal Imaging Device, allowing us to see a wide range of the retina without dilating your child’s eyes. 
  • Convergence Insufficiency. This can cause eye discomfort, headaches, sleepiness while reading, and blurred vision while working at their school desks. The symptoms can lead your child to struggle in school and be mistaken for acting out, poor behavior, or label your child as a poor student, all because they can’t see and don’t quite have the words to explain what’s wrong. Not being able to see will make it difficult for your child to complete simple tasks at school. It can seriously get in the way of their education and their joy for education. 

Coming to the optometrist or any doctor’s appointment can be scary for your little ones. How can you ease their fears and anxiety, and help them enjoy their appointments as much as possible? Well, we have a few ideas and suggestions on the topic and we hope you take them to heart. We promote a healthy lifestyle for your child’s eyes from a very early age, and want their experiences with us to be a very positive one. But a new place filled with new people, sights, and sounds can be very overwhelming to our little ones. Following these suggestions can make these appointments easier on them, and you. 

  • Know that we are expertly trained to help your children have the best eye care possible and will keep them safe and comfortable. 
  • If you’re nervous during or about your child’s appointment, they will be too. Follow by example by being calm and collected to help them stay calm and comfortable during their appointments! 
  • Keep their favorite stuffed animal or toy nearby to help make them feel comfortable, or to help distract them during difficult moments. 
  • Stay with your child throughout the exam to comfort, have them sit on your lap, or hold your hand. 
  • Speak to them in calming and encouraging ways. Keep your tone upbeat and light. 
  • Don’t surprise them with the appointment. Tell them about it beforehand, and talk about what is going to happen. Talk about it often as time leads up to the appointment so they become more and more comfortable with the idea that they are going somewhere new and going to experience something new. 
  • Show them pictures of the doctors and nurses who will be there at their appointment. Use teaching examples or tools to show them what is going to happen at their appointment that is age-appropriate. 
  • Ask them if they have any questions or fears, and truthfully answer their questions and walk them through their fears. See if you can find out why they feel this way and if you can eliminate them before you even step foot into the appointment. 
  • Play make-believe and create a doctor’s visit with them. Walk through the steps of what the appointment will be like during play. Cover their eyes, use a flashlight to shine on their eyes (carefully), and so on. 
  • Read stories to them about children getting their eyes examed or going to the eye doctor. 
  • Talk about how and when the doctors will touch their face, look at their eyes, put in eye drops, and how that might feel and how it could sting a little bit. 
  • Let your child talk to their optometrist and ask any questions they might have. 
  • Make sure they aren’t hungry or sleepy before their appointments. Make sure it’s after a meal and a nap! 
  • These appointments could last a while, please be prepared for that. Don’t rush or push for the appointment to be over. 

We love to help our youngest patients on their healthy eye journey. We are here to help parents teach their children and to prove the best optic care to everyone in your family and at every age. Please take each of these tips to heart. If you have any more questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to reach out and talk to us. We are here for you. We can’t wait to see you soon! 

Supporting Infant Eye Care

When a new baby comes into your life, you will have so much on your plate. But did you know that one of your top priorities in the first six months of your baby’s life needs to be an appointment with your optometrist? 

Hello Summerville! Our mighty little town is doing such an amazing job handling this situation. In this time of crisis, we know it’s hard to leave your homes and to attend to everyday needs like visiting your optometrist. Please know we are following the strict guidelines that WHO, the CDC, and our Governor have put in place for all of our staff and patient’s safety. For any comments, questions, or concerns about how we are handling this current situation, please contact us. We are currently still open, but with some modifications that we are following to make your visits safe and pleasant. With all of this weighing on each of us, we wanted to change the conversation and focus on something good.

One of the many joys in our lives is our children! Here at Ocean Eye, we believe in providing the best eye care for children starting at a very young age. This includes free eye exams for our youngest patients that are under a year old. We are also very excited and proud to participate in a national vision program called INFANTsee. Under this partnership, we can provide those complimentary doctor visits for infants under the age of one. This amazing program is aimed at educating parents on the importance of regular eye exams for their children. It also introduces an optometry visit to your child in a way that allows them to be comfortable and familiar with the offices and what an eye exam is all about, and to not be afraid of them. It also allows them to learn along with their parents about the importance of eye care and health from their very early years and beyond. 

It is very exciting to welcome a baby into your family and to watch them grow and see the world around them for the very first time. We know how very fragile our little ones are and how much they rely on us to make the right decisions to keep them healthy. This includes pediatrician’s visits. At these visits, your pediatrician can see basic eye disorders in your baby, but many eye problems can go undetected because of the lack of equipment or not having enough time during each checkup to spend looking at your child’s eyes on top of their full body checkup. To have a full check-up, your child should have a total wellness checkup with an optometrist as well. Now, with the help of INFANTsee, parents can make appoints with us or an optometrist that is apart of the program at no cost. 

We all see our beautiful children as the perfect little ones that they are, but just like anyone, their vision may not always be perfect. It is very important to have a wellness optometry appointment between their first six months and first birthday to catch any early eye problems or issues your baby’s eyes could be experiencing. 100,000 infants born every year are at risk of serious vision disorders. One in ten children has an eye condition that could have been diagnosed sooner. Early detection is possible and essential, helping many problems be prevented. This will help them now and for the rest of their lives. It can prevent surgery and many other complications throughout your child’s life. Early detection and treatment can: 

  • Help doctors catch eye issues become your child begins schooling. This way, poor vision won’t get in the way of your child’s education or discourage them from learning because they simply can’t see. 
  • Avoid surgery. 
  • Avoid permanent vision impairment. 

Eye issues and impairments don’t wait for a certain age to appear in your child’s eyes. They can appear very early on. Early detection can help them see as they are supposed to and to enjoy their lives to the fullest. This is why we are so proud to be a part of the INFTANTsee program and to offer our services to all of our parents and their precious little ones. 
For more information visit the page on our website dedicated to INFANTsee. This will help answer many common questions that other parents had that you just might too! We can’t wait to see you and your little one soon, and to get them on the path to healthy eyes for life! 

Caring for Your Glasses and Contacts (Part Two!)

It’s so important to keep your contacts and glasses clean, safe and properly cared for. These items are here to help the most delicate organs in your body, so paying them extra attention is only necessary. Take the time to care for your optic wear, and always make it a priority! 

Hello Summerville! This spring weather streaming through our windows has been just what the doctor ordered! We hope you are seeing it clearly. If you’re not – come in and see us! We will make sure you see the spring arrive healthily and in style! We hope you enjoyed our last blog, dedicated to the care and cleaning of your glasses. Remember, even if you don’t wear glasses or contacts many of these tips can still help you maintain a healthy lifestyle when it comes to the care of your eyes. So this blog, and others like it, are all perfect for you! During this time, and any time, it is always important to keep your hands clean while touching your eyes, your contacts, and your glasses. We are all washing our hands more than ever before, keep it up! 

We are your leading provider in Summerville for the best eye exams, lens fittings, and finding the perfect contacts for you. There are many different kinds, different brands, and designs that will allow you to wear them for different lengths of time. We are here to help you discover what’s perfect for all of your optical needs. If you are a first-time contact wearer, discovering the perfect brand of contacts can be a trial period, and that’s okay! Some people prefer wearing daily contacts, while others prefer to wear contacts that you can wear for up to a month. Some prefer hard contacts, while others prefer soft lenses. Your eyes are as unique as you are. Always give yourself the time to find what’s right for you, and we will be here to answer all of your questions along the way. 

Let’s talk about the wearing, caring, and daily life of your contacts. These fragile objects live right on top of your eyes, and you have to touch them to place them there. With such hands-on treatment, you need to put even more care and thought into keeping your hands and contacts clean. You also need to dedicate extra care in how you physically handle them. The first rule of thumb is one that we will say time and again. You need to have very clean hands when putting in or taking out your contacts. You also need to keep your contacts as clean as possible, while you’re wearing them and while they are being stored. 

Here are the best tips, suggestions, and ideas to follow when caring and wearing your contact lenses. 

  • The process of finding the correct style, kind, and shape of contact is very important. As is what solution and eye drop you’re going to use to keep your eyes and contacts clean and moist. Make sure to take the time with us to find the best contacts for you and the proper tools to keep them clean, healthy, and comfortable. 
  • When putting in your contacts, make sure the contact is not damaged. Never put a damaged contact into your eye. This could lead to scratching your eye, irritation, and possible infection. Throw out a damaged contact, and replace it immediately. 
  • Make sure your contacts are clean and moist when you put them in. 
  • Use only your fingertips to hold your contacts and to put them in. Don’t use your nails, sharp objects, or tweezers. 
  • Wash your hands well with soap and water, before putting your contacts in, that doesn’t have any extra additives in it. Dry them with a clean town and make sure there are no random fibers left on your hands before handling your contacts. 
  • Do not sleep in your lenses unless they have been prescribed to be worn that way. 
  • Put your lenses in before putting on makeup, and remove them before washing your makeup off. 
  • Don’t put water on your contacts. The only things you should ever put on your lenses are the solutions and drops made for them. 
  • Use fresh solution every time you store your contacts. Allow your contact case to dry out during the day before using it again. 
  • Pay attention to cleaning your fingernails too. Dirt and grime living under your nails can make its way onto your contacts. Keep your fingernails as clean as you do your hands. 
  • Change your contact case once a month. 
  • Don’t share your contact lenses with anyone. 
  • Remove your lenses and come visit us right away if you have any irritation, redness, discomfort, or difficulty seeing. There could be a much bigger issue that is causing these symptoms. 
  • Don’t wear your lenses longer than they have been prescribed to be worn. Don’t try to stretch their wear. 

Now after reading both parts of this blog, you are skilled at keeping your contacts and glasses clean. You will continue to have fantastic optic health and will be able to see the world around you without any pain. Sharing these tips and tools with your younger family members and children can help them develop healthy habits, and guarantee healthy eyes for a lifetime. If you have any questions or concerns with your glasses or contacts, please contact us right away. Until then, we can’t wait to see you at your next appointment!