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Eyes and Your Health: Easy-to-Spot Warning Signs

Your eyes are windows to your soul, so goes the saying. Aside from revealing your emotions and thoughts, they also tell a lot about your overall state of health. Because of this, it’s important to detect eye abnormalities.

Here are 6 common eye irregularities that often reflect an underlying health problem:

Sudden Blurry Vision

  1. Sudden Blurry Vision. Weakening vision is normal as you age, but an abrupt blurriness in vision is usually triggered by a faulty blood flow to your eye or your brain. This could be a warning of a stroke or the beginning of a migraine headache.Stye and Eyelid Sore
  1. Stye and Eyelid Sore. A stye is a painful, red, crusty bump on your eyelid, which is usually caused by a blocked sebaceous gland. However, if the stye pops up often or persists for a long time, it can be a symptom of sebaceous gland carcinoma. Likewise, an eyelid sore that doesn’t heal can be a sign of basal cell carcinoma, especially if it is accompanied by the loss of eyelashes. Eyelid cancer can cause disfigurement, blindness, and death if they reach the brain through the eye socket.
    Eye twitching
  1. Eye Twitching. Eyelid myokymia is usually not serious and goes away by its own. It is commonly associated with alcohol and caffeine intake, fatigue, or smoking. In rare cases, however, it can be a sign of nervous system disorders, like multiple sclerosis and Parkinson’s disease especially if the eye twitching is accompanied by difficulties in walking and talking.
    Bulging Eyes
  1. Bulging Eyes. Exophthalmos or bulging eyes can be a symptom of Graves’ disease, which is caused by hyperthyroidism. The bulging effect occurs when the tissues around the eyes are inflamed. Other illnesses that lead to exophthalmos include glaucoma, hemangioma, histiocytosis, leukemia, cellulitis, and childhood cancers, like neuroblastoma, retinoblastoma, and rhabdomyosarcoma.Yellow Eyes
  2. Yellow Eyes. If your liver is inflamed or damaged, your skin and eyes appear yellow as a result of high levels of bilirubin in your blood. This condition is more commonly known as jaundice. Cancer, hepatitis infection, alcohol abuse, and bad diet often lead to liver problems.
    Droopy Eyelids
  1. Droopy Eyelids. Ptosis or droopy eyelids can be a symptom of myasthenia gravis, an autoimmune disease characterized by muscle weakness. It doesn’t only affect your eyes but also your facial and throat muscles, making it difficult to swallow and speak. If ptosis manifests with aneisocoria (pupils of different sizes), it is called Horner’s syndrome, which is sometimes associated with aneurysms and tumors in the neck.

Not all eye irregularities with underlying health warnings are visible to the naked eye. There are many others that can only be diagnosed with a professional eye exam. Learn more about this in next blog, coming soon.

Shinagawa Lasik Center offers comprehensive eye exam and vision screening. For more information and appointment request, visit Shinagawa.PH.

After Treatment

Dark Undereye Circles: Ending the Horror

So, you’ve finally determined the root cause of your undereye darkness. Now, it’s time to choose the right treatment(s). Contrary to common belief that dark circles can be banished by simply getting a full night of shut-eye, they usually require medical intervention. Treatments include:

Eye Cream and Chemical Peel

Eye cream with topical bleaching agent can reduce undereye darkness caused by hyperpigmentation from melasma or sun damage. In extreme cases, doctors may recommend chemical peeling.

IPL and Laser Resurfacing

Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) therapy and laser resurfacing help reduce dark circles by increasing collagen production, decreasing pigmentation problems, and improving overall skin quality. Laser treatments can also be more effective when combined with chemical peeling.

Fillers, Fat Injection, and PRP

Injection treatments for dark circles include hyaluronic acid injectable fillers, like Restylane, which restores volume to the thinning undereye skin and upper cheeks. Fat injection also gives the same benefit permanently although results are not guaranteed as fat cells don’t always survive the fat transfer process.

Platelet-Rich Plasma (PRP) Therapy is recently introduced as a treatment for dark undereye circles. The PRP extracted from the patient’s own blood is injected into the problem area, helping regenerate skin tissue and promote collagen production, which in turn add volume, radiance, and glow to the skin.

Facelift

Dark circles caused by sagging cheeks can be efficiently corrected by facelift procedures (cheek lift and mid-face lift). Aside from treating dark circles, it can also reduce puffiness and deep nasolabial folds.

Blepharoplasty

Lower blepharoplasty (eyelid surgery) is generally the most effective way to permanently get rid of dark circles. This surgical procedure removes the excess undereye skin and corrects sagging of the lower eyelids. It is often combined with other surgical procedures, like arcus marginalis release, placement of tear through implants; and the addition, removal, or repositioning of undereye fat.

Shinagawa Aesthetics Center offers various treatments for dark undereye circles, such as chemical peeling, IPL, Laser Resurfacing, Injectable Fillers, PRP, Facelift, and Blepharoplasty. For details and appointment request, visit Shinagawa PH.

To understand how dark undereye circles develop, check out the first part of this blog series here.

Contact Lenses

6 Risks of Long-Term Contact Lenses Use

Contact lenses are medical devices worn directly on the corneas of the eyes for vision correction or aesthetics purposes. Although useful, they can put the eyes at risk of infections and inflammation, especially when used for an extended period of time. This is because the lenses cover the entire corneas, reducing the amount of oxygen that reaches the eyes from the environment.

Several risks of prolonged wearing of contact lenses include:

Dry Eye Syndrome

1. Dry Eye Syndrome

Dry eye syndrome (keratoconjunctivitis sicca) is caused by insufficient or poor quality tears. Its symptoms include burning or stinging sensation, sandy or gritty feeling, sore eyes, light sensitivity, blurry vision; and eye itchiness, tiredness, dryness, and redness. Inadequate supply of oxygen reduces the tears produced by the eyes so if you have borderline dry eye syndrome, you may feel especially uncomfortable with your contacts on. If you wear contacts for too long, the protein deposits also build-up, which can make your eyes feel even drier.

 

 

Pink Eye

2. Pink Eye

Bacterial infection from contact lenses can lead to pink eye (conjunctivitis), an inflammation or swelling of the conjunctiva. Symptoms of conjunctivitis include pink discoloration to the whites of eyes, swollen eyelids, itching or burning sensation, discharge or excessive tearing, and increased sensitivity to light.

 

 

 

Corneal Ulcer 3. Corneal Ulcer

Corneal ulcer (microbial keratitis) results from the rubbing of contact lenses against the eyes’ surface, creating open sores in the outer layer of the corneas that may enable bacteria to penetrate the eyes. Corneal ulcer causes pain and redness, mild to severe eye discharge, and blurry vision.

 

 

 

4. Corneal ScarringCorneal Scar

Corneal scars develop when contact lens cause abrasions or injury to the Bowman’s membrane (smooth and nonregenerating layer between the superficial epithelium and the stroma) and the stromal layers. Scar can also form when the corneal ulcer penetrates the Bowman’s and the stromal layer. Corneal scarring can lead to impaired vision.

 

 

 

 

 

Vision Loss

5. Vision Loss

Corneal ulcer scarring can lead to permanent vision loss, especially if the ulcer is centrally located in the cornea and is deep and invasive. Vision loss after corneal ulcer occurred more frequently with extended-wear soft contact lenses compared with extended-wear silicone hydrogel contact lenses.

 

 

 

Abnormal blood vessel growth

6. Abnormal blood vessel growth

Wearing contact lenses for too many hours or too many years can cause abnormal blood vessel growth in the cornea (corneal neovascularization). Blood vessels normally circle the cornea at the limbus or the border of the cornea and the sclera (white part of the eye). Any growth beyond this point hampers your vision.

 

 

 

Risks of prolonged contact lenses use differ for each person. If you decide to use them, always keep them clean and stored properly, follow your lens-wearing schedules, and set appointments with your eye doctor for follow-up care. Also, make sure to have an up-to-date pair of eyeglasses to give your eyes a break.

For permanent and long-term solution to vision problems, consider getting LASIK (laser-assisted in situ keratomileusis), which is the most advanced type of vision correction that uses laser energy to reshape the cornea and correct refractive errors, such as nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism.

Shinagawa Lasik Center provides safe, fast, painless, and bladeless LASIK procedures. For more information or appointment schedule, visit Shinagawa PH.

Featured Photo shutterstock_526367467

10 Bad Habits that Cause Vision Problems

Poor eyesight can be caused by many factors including genetics, age, and environment. In today’s digital world, however, most vision problems are often the result of poor eye care and bad habits.

If you want to maintain your healthy vision for years to come, it’s time to break these unhealthy habits:

Screen Time

1. Too much screen time

Spending too much time in front of your laptop or smartphone greatly reduces the number of times you blink, which is essential for eye cleaning and lubrication. Blinking also stimulates the retina and gives your brain a rest. Prolonged exposure to screen-based devices also causes digital eye strain with symptoms including headache, burning eyes, blurred vision, and disrupted sleep. Severe eye strain can lead to permanent vision problems.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Working at Night

2. Not getting enough sleep

Lack of sleep can lead to eye strain and eye fatigue. Sufficient sleep of 6-8 hours daily helps your eyes recover from a long day of use and provides continuous eye lubrication, which clears out accumulated irritants.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Wearing Contact Lense

3. Prolonged wearing of contact lenses

The eyes’ oxygen supply is limited when wearing contact lenses. The longer you have them on, the riskier the game. Without oxygen, the cornea swells up and expose a small gap where bacteria can enter, increasing your risk for keratitis and other eye infections. Long-term use of contact lenses can also lead to alterations in the cornea and corneal scarring, which affect vision.

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Man Rubbing his Eyes

4. Rubbing your eyes often

The seemingly harmless habit of rubbing your eyes can have serious consequences. Aside from the risk of allergic conjunctivitis and eye infections, it can also lead to keratoconus, the thinning and reshaping of the cornea from round to cone, which causes a progressive loss of vision. It can also worsen pre-existing eye conditions such as myopia and glaucoma.

 

 

 

 

 

Woman Staring at Her Food

5. Not eating enough food for the eyes

Dark leafy greens contain nutrients like lutein and zeaxanthin, which reduce the risk of macular degeneration and cataracts. Yellow and orange-colored fruits and vegetables are also high in beta carotene, vitamin C, and vitamin E, which are all essential for healthy eyesight. Other food for the eyes include egg, nuts, fatty fish, and other seafood.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Woman Drinking Some Soda

6. Not drinking enough water

Dehydration hampers your eyes from producing enough tears, which are essential for nourishment and moisture. Dehydration also causes your eyes to become dry, red, and puffy.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Guy Not Wearing Sunglasses

7. Not wearing sunglasses

Overexposure to the harmful rays of the sun can lead to photokeratitis (sunburn of the front surface of the eye), macular degeneration, cataract, unsightly growths on your eye’s conjunctiva, and cancer of the eyelid. Wear sunglasses with complete UVA/UVB protection even on cloudy days.

 

 

 

 

 

A Woman Reading in the Dark

8. Not using proper lighting

Working in dim light makes it difficult for your eyes to focus and leads to eye fatigue while excessively bright light can cause glare. Make sure your home lighting plan addresses every purpose of your rooms. If you have a home office, for instance, you may need a lamp on the worktable to reduce eyestrain.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Man Smoking

9. Smoking

Smoking is linked to dry eyes and various sight-threatening eye diseases, including macular degeneration, cataract, uveitis, and diabetic retinopathy. Smokers are also four times more likely to go blind compared to non-smokers.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Eye Examination

10. Not getting regular eye exams

Regular eye exams can detect vision problems and other eye diseases. They can also determine whether you are at high risk for a particular eye disease. Some eyesight problems, like glaucoma, have no warning signs until there is an irreversible loss of vision. If you have not gotten your vision checked yet, start scheduling your regular eye exams today.

 

 

 

 

Shinagawa Lasik & Center offers comprehensive eye examination. For details and appointment request, visit Shinagawa.PH.

Life-change-by-lasik | Shinagawa PH

Life Changed By LASIK: Blogger Edition

Bloggers Yuki Tansengco (The Style Cat) and Sab Lee (Jay and Sab Around the World) both had vision problems since childhood. Yuki had an eye grade of -2.5 to -2.75 and relied on prescription glasses while Sab, although reluctant to wearing glasses despite being diagnosed with nearsightedness in grade school, had to wear contact lenses when her eye grade became -3.50. Tired of dealing with the inconveniences of wearing specs and contacts, the two eventually decided to have LASIK at Shinagawa Lasik Center, the world’s leading LASIK eye surgery provider.

 

Now, Yuki and Sab are enjoying the benefits of having perfect vision. Aside from seeing the world clearly without relying on any eyewear, they also have more time and freedom to do activities that need good vision, like reading, doing art, playing sports, and driving. Life-changing indeed!