As the year winds down, it is a great time for you to knock things off your checklist, such as annual doctor visits, gift lists and travel plans, so that you can enjoy the holiday season. One crucial doctor’s appointment that many put off is an annual eye exam. Annual eye exams can help you stay current with your prescription, give you an opportunity to discuss contact lens options if you feel discomfort in your current lens and help your eye doctor detect any eye diseases or vision problems. Maintaining your annual check-up with your eye doctor is vital for your overall health, but another good reason to visit your eye doctor is so that you can take advantage of any remaining funds in your flexible spending account (FSA) to help cover the costs of your annual exam and/or contact lenses.
How to safeguard your eye health and comfort
No matter your age, it’s important to have a complete eye exam every year, and to take care of your vision by protecting your eyes from common stressors and hazards.
Here are some ways to ensure your eyes stay healthy and feel their best.
1. Schedule your annual eye exam
If it’s been over a year since you’ve seen an eye care provider, make an appointment for an eye exam. Your eye care provider not only checks your vision, but they can assess other issues of eye health such as dry eye and glaucoma, which can affect people of any age (though both are more likely to affect older adults).
2. Consider a contact lens upgrade
If you need corrective lenses, ask your eye care provider about the TOTAL family of products, which use proprietary Water Gradient Technology for ultimate comfort. The lens material features a gradual increase in water content, approaching 100% water at the surface, so nothing touches your eye but a gentle cushion of moisture.
“Many patients who wear contact lenses think it’s normal to experience a little discomfort or dryness and may hesitate to bring it up during their annual eye exams, but it doesn’t have to be that way,” says optometrist Melanie Denton Dombrowski. “My patients who switch to the Alcon TOTAL family of products tell me they are pleased to experience exceptional comfort. I’m very happy I can now offer the same level of comfort to everyone, even my patients with astigmatism.”
Available options include:
- Dailies TOTAL1®, Dailies TOTAL1® for Astigmatism and Dailies TOTAL1® Multifocal are the first and only Water Gradient, daily disposable contact lenses that are designed so that nothing touches your eye but a gentle cushion of moisture, providing exceptional comfort.
- TOTAL30® is the only Water Gradient monthly replacement lens and is clinically shown to feel like nothing, even on day 30. The advanced technology of TOTAL30® is durable and remains intact during a full month of wear with daily cleaning, disinfecting and storing.
“Contact lens options differ by length of time they’re intended to be worn, and the type of vision correction needed,” says Dr. Denton Dombrowski. “Your eye doctor can help determine your vision correction needs and which lens is right for you.”
To learn more about the TOTAL family of contact lens options, visit TotalContactLenses.com.
3. Practice good eye care
A few simple habits can help reduce eye strain and protect against common irritations. This is crucial for those who work long hours in front of computers or spend time outdoors in the elements.
- Don’t rub your eyes — The surface of your eye scratches easily, and even gentle rubbing may cause debris to damage your cornea. If your eyes feel gritty, try a premium lubricant eye drop, like Systane.
- Take breaks — Whether you spend the day in front of a screen or out in the wind and sun, rest your eyes occasionally by closing them briefly, or looking away from the screen or the sun for a while. Optometrists recommend computer users follow the 20-20-20 rule: For every 20 minutes spent staring at a screen, look at something 20 feet away, for 20 seconds.
- Use protection — Spending time outdoors? A UV-shielding pair of sunglasses can help protect your eyes from several eye health risks and discomfort. It’s also a good idea to avoid looking directly at the sun.
- Practice good hygiene — Always wash your hands before handling contact lenses or other eye products, and make sure the tip of an eye drop bottle never touches your eye or anything else directly.
If you’re looking for ways to use up the last of your FSA funds, think about making a visit to your eye doctor to discuss comfortable lens options. Use these tips to safeguard your eyes, and learn more about contact lenses and other products to help care for your eyes at TotalContactLenses.com.
Rx only. Ask your eye care provider for complete wear, care and safety information.