What you need to know about Cataracts

Things you should know

about Cataracts

Class is in Session and we will be going in-depth with this new and informative topic, Cataracts.

Today, we’re discussing what cataracts are, and over the next few weeks, we will discuss more details relating to this eye disease.

A cataract is a clouding of the eye’s lens, the clear, oval-shaped structure that rests behind the pupil.

Most cataracts occur as a result of age, usually sometime after 40. As we get older, the proteins that help make up the lens can start to cluster together, which causes clouding. Cataracts are one of the most common causes of vision loss, usually affecting either eye or sometimes one, but there is good news! It is treatable, and we will also get into that a little later on.

When there are cataracts in both eyes, it can progress at a different rate. One eye may experience visual changes when another can be normal. These changes don’t typically happen immediately, it can take a few months or even a few years to notice. Once you start to notice changes in your vision, it may seem like your vision is blurry, cloudy, hazy, or even. You may notice that your vision is less vibrant or more muted…

How can you tell if you have cataracts? We’re back with our ‘Class is in session’ segment on cataracts. Let’s get right into the symptoms.

· Clouded blurred or dim vision

· Increasing difficulty with vision at night

· Sensitivity to light and glare

· Need for brighter light for reading and other activities

· Seeing “halos” around lights

· Frequent changes in eyeglass or contact lens prescription

· Fading or yellowing of colours

· Double vision in a single eye

Cloudiness may initially affect one small part of your eye’s lenses. The cloudiness can grow and obscure more of your vision, essentially distorting the light that passes through your lenses. At this point, you may notice serious vision changes (vision loss) and should get help before this condition worsens. However, you don’t have to wait until you experience visual changes to get your eyes test. We suggest you do eye exams frequently if you are at risk for developing cataracts.

What Causes Cataracts? We have the answer in today’s ‘Class is in Session’ segment. Cataracts maybe caused by; trauma (injury to the eye) genetics, previous eye surgery, medical conditions such as diabetes, long-term use of steroid medication, or simply aging.

The lens, where cataracts form is positioned behind the coloured part of your eye (iris). The lens focuses light that passes into your eye, producing clear, sharp images on the retina (the light-sensitive membrane in the eye).

As you get older, the lenses in your eyes become less flexible, less transparent, and thicker. Issues related to age or medical conditions, as listed above may cause the tissue within the lens to break down and cluster together. The result of the tissue clustering together is cloudy vision.

As cataracts further develop, more parts of your eyes get affected and it blocks the lights as it passes through the lens. Once the light is blocked, less defined images will reach your retina, essentially causing blurry vision.

Just for your knowledge, we’re briefly touching on a few types of cataracts. Some Cataracts affect the center of the lens (nuclear cataracts), the edges of the lens (cortical cataracts), the back of the lens (posterior subcapsular cataracts), and cataracts you’re born with (congenital cataracts).

Yes, some people are born with cataracts and it’s caused by eye trauma, diseases, or genetics.

Have you ever wondered if there are any risk factors associated with Cataracts? If you have wondered that, then we have the answer for you. Let’s get right into this brief segment. Factors that increase your risk of cataracts include:

  • Diabetes
  • Previous eye injury or inflammation
  • Previous eye surgery
  • Prolonged use of corticosteroid medications
  • Drinking excessive amounts of alcohol
  • Increasing age
  • Excessive exposure to sunlight
  • Smoking
  • Obesity
  • High blood pressure

If you have these risk factors, get regular eye examinations. Eye examinations can help detect cataracts and other eye problems at their earliest stages.

Contact Us

60-62 Frederick Street, Port of Spain

1-868-620-EYES (3937)



Opening Hours

Monday – Friday : 8:00AM – 5:00PM

Saturdays: 9:00AM – 1:00PM

What you need to know about Dry Eyes

Things you should know

about Dry Eyes

Do you have dry eyes? Let us know in the comments.

In simple terms, dry eyes occur when your eyes don’t produce enough tears or the quality of tears produced is of poor quality. The eyes produce tears all the time, not just when you experience emotion. However, with dry eyes, the tear glands produce fewer tears in some cases and in other cases the tears that are produced break down very quickly, thus exposing the eye to periods of “drying” between blinks.

Let’s explain how it works!

In healthy eyes, a new layer of tears known as the tear film is produced each time you blink. In between blinks, this tear layer remains intact and ensures that your eyes remain totally moist and lubricated until you blink again, which then produces a new tear film and the process repeats. In this way, the eye is always lubricated and no possibility of drying of the cornea exists.

In cases of Dry Eyes, each time you blink the tear film is either insufficient (owing to too little tears being produced) or the constituents of the tear film makes it unstable so that it breaks down and exposes the cornea to drying before you are able to blink again and create a new tear film. In cases like this, as well as with other contributing factors that we will discuss in subsequent classes, you experience what is commonly called Dry Eyes.

Quick fact, tears are made up of water, fatty oils, protein, electrolytes, and substances to fight off bacteria. This combination helps keep the surface of the eyes smooth and clear so that we can see properly.

Factors such as aging, computer use, your environment, health problems, and certain medications are associated with dry eyes. With regards to aging, your eyes can become drier later in life especially after the age of 50, however, this condition can still occur at any age!

Spending prolonged hours on the computer or digital devices is also a factor associated with dry eyes. When you are on these devices, you tend to focus more and blink less fully and frequently. Blinking less allows your tears to evaporate quicker, increasing your risk for developing dry eyes.

Another factor associated with dry eyes is your environment, both indoor and outdoor. Yes, the beastly cold air-condition unit in your office or even ceiling fans that viciously oscillates can decrease indoor humidity and/or accelerate tear evaporation, causing dry eyes. On the other hand, outdoor climates such as dusty/dry or windy conditions can contribute to dry eyes too. Before this pandemic, many persons were traveling, however, the air in an airplane is quite dry and can also be the reason many persons have dry eyes.

Lastly, if you have health problems such as diabetes, lupus, arthritis, or take medications such as blood-pressure prescriptions, birth control or anti-depressants, these can all contribute to Dry Eyes.

There are many symptoms related to dry eyes; ranging from heavy/ sore eyes to a stinging/ burning or scratchy sensation in your eyes. If you ever felt like you had grit or some other material in your eye, that’s called a foreign body sensation, which is a symptom of this condition. Have you experienced this? Let us know in the comments.

Symptoms of dry eyes also include; eye redness, sensitivity to light, difficulty wearing contact lenses, difficulty seeing while driving at night, and blurred or fatigued vision. The list also includes watery eyes! Watery eyes are the body’s response to irritation of the eyes.

It may sound strange that watery eyes are a symptom of dry eyes but this happens because dryness on the eye‘s surface will sometimes over-stimulate the production of the watery component of your tears. This over-stimulation is a protective mechanism known as “reflex tearing” and doesn’t stay long enough to correct the actual condition.

A few ways you can alleviate dry eyes are by using artificial tears/lubricating eye drops, as they lubricate the eyes and help maintain moisture on the outer surface of your eyes (Cornea) . Lubricating eye drops can make a huge difference by reducing the grittiness or scratchy sensation that occurs with dry eyes! Another thing you can do is use a warm compress, the heat from the compress can help the glands that produce tears (Lacrimal Gland) to work better.

You can also try blinking more frequently, and taking more frequent breaks from the computer. Many persons spend lots of time on the computer for both work and leisure, a good rule of thumb to follow is to look away from your screen at least every 20 minutes and look at something that is at least 20 feet from your eyes for at least 20 seconds. Your eyes will thank you!

The last thing that you can do to alleviate dry eyes is to gently wash your eyelids to remove any bacteria that may cause your glands to be irritated. The most important thing here is to ensure that your hands are clean! You do not want to introduce more bacteria to your eyes when the goal is to reduce the bacteria. Wash your eyelids by gently applying a washcloth to your lids for about 20 seconds, then washing your lashes and lids with pre-moistened eyelid wipes that are available at many drugstores.

A few ways to prevent dry eyes are to avoid air such as fans , air-condition and hairdryers from blowing directly in your eye. Remember to use eye drops regularly as recommended to keep your eyes lubricated, do this even when your eyes feel fine. Prevention is always better than cure!

If you’re on the computer, reading, sewing, painting, or simply doing a task that requires visual concentration, remember to take intermittent breaks. Try blinking more frequently for a few seconds to help spread the tears evenly throughout your eyes and remember to do this as often as you can. We also recommend that you close your eyes for a few minutes daily to help stimulate tear production. Try it, it works!

If you use the computer quite frequently, ensure you position your screen below eye level, so you won’t have to open your eyes as wide to view the screen. This may help slow the evaporation of your tears between eye blinks!

Another way to prevent dry eyes is to be aware of your environment! It’s quite rainy these days but some days are so dry and sunny. When spending time in dry/dusty/windy environments consider a good pair of sunglasses or protective eyewear which will help reduce tear evaporation as well as reduce duty and wind from directly reaching your eyes.

An important point in preventing dry eyes is to reduce and avoid smoke. If you smoke, speak with your doctor about a personalized strategy to help you to quit. This is very important since smoke can worsen dry eye symptoms.

There are more advanced ways to deal with severe cases of dry eyes but we have covered the basic in this class and hope that the information shared was of some value to you.

Contact Us

60-62 Frederick Street, Port of Spain

1-868-620-EYES (3937)



Opening Hours

Monday – Friday : 8:00AM – 5:00PM

Saturdays: 9:00AM – 1:00PM

What you need to know about Hypermetropia

Things you should know

about Hypermetropia

Hypermetropia/Hyperopia is also known as Far-sightedness/ long-sightedness.

It is one of the common refractive errors of the eye.

If you are hypermetropic, the image of a nearby object is formed behind the retina. This means that light is focused too far back in the eye, causing things which are close up to appear blurred or the eye having to constantly refocus ( via a process called accommodation) to maintain clear vision.

People with severe hypermetropia may be able to clearly see only objects a great distance away, while those with mild farsightedness may be able to clearly see objects that are much closer.

Hypermetropia is a very common condition, especially in children and can lead to several symptoms which are all associated with eyestrain.

If you’re farsighted, your eyes have to work harder to maintain clear vision up close, this inevitably causes eyestrain.

Symptoms of Hypermetropia are due to this extra eyestrain and may include one or more of the following:

  • Frontal headaches (forehead to temple region) associated with close work.
  • Your eyes burn during or after close visual task (computers/reading/writing)
  • Your eyes water during or after close work (computers/reading/writing)
  • You have general eye discomfort or a “heavy feeling” of the eyes after doing close tasks.
  • If you experience any of the above symptoms, there is a strong chance that you are Hypermetropic, and correcting this refractive error will eliminate the symptoms that you experience.

Hypermetropia is sometimes difficult to explain to patients as they often believe that as long as they can see clearly, then they do not require glasses but correction for Hypermetropia more often has to do with relieving the strain on your eyes (and associated symptoms), rather than clarifying your vision itself.

Hypermetropia is caused by a refractive error of the eye.

Without getting too technical, we will explain the causes of Hypermetropia.

Your eye has two parts that focus images:

– The cornea is the clear, dome-shaped front surface of your eye.

– The lens is a clear structure about the size and shape of an M&M’s candy inside of your eyes.

The cornea and lens are responsible for bending (refracting) all incoming light to make a sharply focused image directly on the retina, which is at the back of your eye.

Hypermetropia occurs mainly due to two reasons:

1) When your eyeball is shorter than normal (the axial length of the eye from the front to the back).

2) When the cornea or the lens (both mentioned above) are flatter in shape (less curved) than normal.

The goal of treating farsightedness is to help focus light on the retina through the use of corrective lenses or refractive surgery.

Prescription lenses
In young people, treatment isn’t always necessary because the crystalline lenses inside the eyes are flexible enough to compensate for the condition. However, depending on the degree of farsightedness as well as the symptoms experienced, you may need prescription lenses to improve your near vision and/or relieve any associated symptoms.

As you age and the lenses inside of your eyes become less flexible, you feel the effects of Hypermetropia more and more, and you will require correction.

Wearing prescription lenses treats Hypermetropia by counteracting the decreased curvature of your cornea/lens or the smaller size (axial length) of your eye.

Types of prescription lenses include:

This is a simple, safe, and recommended way to sharpen decreased vision caused by farsightedness and/or relieve any symptoms associated with eyestrain.

Contact lenses
Ask your eye doctor about the pros and cons of contact lenses and what might be best for you.

Refractive surgery
These surgical treatments correct farsightedness by reshaping the curvature of your cornea. This is not usually the first treatment option but in some cases, it might be indicated.

Contact Us

60-62 Frederick Street, Port of Spain

1-868-620-EYES (3937)



Opening Hours

Monday – Friday : 8:00AM – 5:00PM

Saturdays: 9:00AM – 1:00PM