human eye

Common Eye Conditions: Diabetic Retinopathy

Diabetic retinopathy is a condition that occurs in those with diabetes. High levels of sugar in the blood cause the formation of abnormal blood cells in the retina. If left untreated, this condition can lead to total vision loss. If you’ve recently been diagnosed with diabetes, it’s important to have your vision checked regularly by youreye doctor in Champaign, IL, and to learn how to effectively manage your diabetes.

How Will I Know If I Have Diabetic Retinopathy? 

The earliest stages of this progressive eye disease may have no symptoms, but as it worsens, you may notice signs such as:

  • Blurry vision
  • Floaters
  • Dark spots in your vision
  • Vision loss

Vision that has been lost due to diabetic retinopathy cannot be regained. However, by effectively managing your diabetes and keeping regular appointments for dilated eye exams, you can prevent your vision loss from worsening.

Who Is At Risk of Developing Diabetic Retinopathy? 

Anyone who has Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes can develop diabetic retinopathy. Because high levels of sugar in the bloodstream make it difficult for blood to make it to the retina, blood flow becomes obstructed and new blood vessels try to form. But these blood vessels usually don’t develop as they should, and they begin to leak blood and to form scar tissue that can cause retinal detachment. Your best defense against diabetic retinopathy is to learn how to maintain healthy blood sugar levels and take good care of your eyes.

Help for Diabetic Retinopathy in Champaign, IL

For help withdiabetic retinopathy in Champaign, IL, call on Champaign Eye Professionals. The dedicated clinicians at Champaign Eye Professionals are happy to schedule you for a comprehensive eye exam to help diagnose diabetes-related conditions such as diabetic retinopathy and glaucoma. Call today to book your appointment.

Summer Eye Care Tips

Summer is an important time of year to take care of your eyes! Wearing the right protective eyewear and seeing your eye doctor in Champaign IL can help. This summer is fast approaching. Here’s what you need to know about taking care of your eyes in the coming season.

Wear Sunglasses

Sunglasses are good for your eyes in so many ways. Some sunglasses block harmful UV rays that can cause conditions like cataracts. Sunglasses also make it easier to see while you’re doing things like driving, spending time at the beach and navigating your way around town.

It’s very important to wear sunglasses throughout the summer. If you need prescription sunglasses in Champaign IL, make an appointment to see the eye doctor as soon as possible.

Wear Eye Protection When Doing Work Outside

Are you going to be using a weed wacker or a lawn mower? If so, you should be wearing eye protection! Wearing eye protection when doing work outside can prevent your eyes from getting injured by flying debris. There are many types of eye protection that can fit over prescription glasses, but if you need prescription eye protection for whatever reason, talk to your eye doctor.

Avoid Sunburned Eyes

If you go outside (maybe to the ocean or to a swimming pool) and spend too much time looking into bright lights, you can get sunburned eyes. This condition, also called photokeratitis, can cause problems like eye pain, headache, sensitivity to light – and even temporary blindness. Wear sunglasses and a hat when spending time outdoors!

Know When to See the Eye Doctor

If you’re experiencing blurry vision, changes in vision and other problems, see the eye doctor in Champaign IL. If you need sunglasses or new prescription lenses for this summer, call Champaign Eye Professionals to make an appointment.

How to Pick the Perfect Sunglasses for This Summer

*Picking the perfect sunglasses is important – especially if you’re buying prescription sunglasses, because the right pair may be with you for a long time. Summer is coming and finding the right eyeglasses can improve your days in the sun.

Before you can get the best sunglasses, it’s important to see your eye doctor in Champaign IL. Your eye doctor will be able to help you find the best sunglasses for your needs.

What to Consider When Buying Sunglasses

When buying new sunglasses, it’s important to consider the following variables:

Style. Do the sunglasses fit your preferred style? Sunglasses come in a range of colors, shapes and sizes. The frames can even be made from different materials, including black and plastic. Try on a variety of styes when you’re deciding which ones are right for you.

Lens tint. Darker lenses block more light. For people with sensitive eyes, a darker lens is better. For people without sensitive eyes, darker lenses can make it harder to walk into a dark building with sunglasses on. Darker lenses also make it harder to tell what color the traffic lights are while driving.

Trendiness. Trendy sunglasses look great, but may need to be replaced just a few years after they’re purchased. If you want to keep your sunglasses for a longer time, consider a more classic shape and style.

Get Your Updated Prescription Before Getting New Frames

Before you can get new sunglasses in Champaign IL, it’s important to get an updated prescription from your eye doctor. Getting an updated prescription ensures that your new glasses will be fully customized to your needs – and they’ll continue to meet your needs for a longer period of time.

3 Things That Occur within Your Eyes When Your Blood Sugar Levels Are Too High

From managing diabetic retinopathy in Champaign, IL to tending to changes in your vision, your blood sugar levels can mean more trips to an eye doctor for help. However, you can thwart some of your risks of facing these problems by keeping your blood glucose levels in check. Take a look at some of the things that occur within your eyes when your blood sugar levels are too high.

The lens of your eye can swell

It is quite common for people to feel like their vision is blurry when their blood sugar levels are too high. This may not always be a permanent vision change. In fact, the problem can come about because the high glucose levels in your blood cause the lens of the eye to swell. As blood glucose levels return to normal, the inflammation may subside.

Pressure can build within the eye

The swelling in your eye can make it impossible for the fluids within the eye to drain properly. Therefore, when your eyes swell due to high blood sugar, this can mean the eye also faces more internal pressure than usual. Unfortunately, this can lead to risks of glaucoma.

Small blood vessels in the retina may sustain damage

The small blood vessels in the retina are sensitive to the changes in blood flow and fluid circulation that come along with high blood sugar levels. Over time, if high levels occur too frequently, this damages these small blood vessels, and permanently affects vision. This is what leads to the condition known as diabetic retinopathy.

Talk to a Champaign, IL Eye Doctor About Vision Care and Diabetes

When you have diabetes, vision health management in Champaign, IL becomes even more important. Talk to your eye doctor about steps you can take with diabetes management to protect the health of your eyes. Reach out to us at Champaign Eye Professionals to schedule an appointment.

Common Eye Conditions: Presbyopia 

Presbyopia may sound serious, but in reality, it’s something that happens to most of us as we age. It’s a fancy term to describe your eyes’ inability to focus close-up as you get older. If you have presbyopia, you may need corrective lenses to see things up close, such as the small print in a book or newspaper. Your eye doctor in Champaign, IL, can tell you more about this eye condition that affects millions of people every year.

What Causes Presbyopia?

Presbyopia happens when the lens of your eye becomes less flexible due to age. Usually, symptoms begin appearing around age 40. Small print becomes more difficult to read, and you may have trouble seeing well enough to perform close-up, routine tasks, such as threading a needle. When you’re young, the lens of the eye is softer and more pliable. It’s able to change shape more easily, allowing you to shift focus between objects near and far away. As the lens ages, it loses some of that flexibility. And what was once easy to see, becomes blurred.

What Are the Symptoms of Presbyopia?

Symptoms of presbyopia are similar for everyone. Over time, it becomes more and more difficult to see close-up objects clearly. You may be forced to hold your book or newspaper further away to focus on the print. And you may suffer headaches or eye strain after a session of doing close-up work, such as sewing.

Treatment Options in Illinois

Presbyopia isn’t something to fear. In fact, it’s a very common occurrence. Treatment usually involves eyeglasses that bend the light before it reaches the lens of your eye. Other options may include refractive eye surgery or lens implants.

If you’re struggling with age-related vision changes in Champaign, IL, schedule an appointment today with Champaign Eye Professionals.

About Your VSP (Vision Service Plan)

VSP is a top insurer for managed vision care in the United States. If your family is covered under a VSP, you have access to many benefits that shave money off basic services and eyewear, including premium frames not covered by other insurance carriers. If it’s time for your annual eye exam, your eye doctor in Champaign, IL, can tell you more about the benefits offered by your VSP.

Who Is VSP?

Surprisingly, VSP has been operational since 1955. It has only recently grown to become the top provider of vision insurance in America. VSP was created by optometrists to help provide patients with access to better vision care. Currently, 40,000 doctors worldwide accept VSP, which means it’s easy to find an in-network provider.

Benefits Offered By Your VSP

Benefits may vary depending upon which company you work for and which plan you choose. However, the overall benefits include:

  • Additional discounts on featured frames
  • Full coverage on standard progressive lenses
  • Savings on LASIK
  • Monthly premiums as low as $13
  • Premium lens upgrades
  • Coverage and discounts on comprehensive eye exams

To learn more about your personal benefits under VSP, you can create an account at the VSP Member Portal. Or, you can call your eye doctor in Champaign, IL, to learn more about the services covered by your VSP.

Contact Champaign Eye Professionals Today

If you’re insured under a VSP, you have access to many discounts and perks, including the costs of your eye exam and prescription lenses. Call Champaign Eye Professionals today to schedule an appointment and to learn more about which services your plan covers. Our friendly team is always professional, and we’re happy to answer your insurance questions when you call.

About your EyeMed Vision Plan

Do you have vision coverage through EyeMed Vision Care? If so, you have access to many benefits that can save you money on the costs of your eye exam, frames, lenses, and more. EyeMed Vision Care is now one of the largest providers of vision benefits in the United States and is offered by many employers nationwide. Your eye doctor in Champaign, IL, can tell you more about what’s covered through your EyeMed Vision Plan.

Who Is EyeMed?

EyeMed has been offering vision coverage since 1988. It’s parent company is Luxxotica, based in Italy. Initially an eyewear brand that specialized in frames and lenses, Luxxotica created EyeMed to help its members gain better access to managed vision care. In 2022, it was named one of the top two Best Vision Insurance Companies by The Balance.

What Benefits Do I Have Through EyeMed?

Like most managed-care plans, your benefits may vary depending upon your level of coverage. More than 87,000 vision care providers accept EyeMed in the United States, which makes it easy to find someone nearby. And though your savings depend somewhat on the company you work for and the type of lenses, frames, and add-ons you choose, you can save up to 73 percent off the cost of your new prescription eyewear as well as your eye exam. Other in-network benefits may include:

  • 20 percent off items not covered by your plan, such as prescription sunglasses
  • 40 percent off a second pair of glasses
  • 20 percent off frame balancing
  • Savings on contact lenses
  • Savings on LASIK and PRK corrective surgeries

As an EyeMed plan participant, you can also save money on a wider selection of frames, including premium frames that aren’t typically covered.

Call Champaign Eye Professionals Today

If you have questions about your EyeMed Vision Plan in Champaign, IL, call Champaign Eye Professionals to schedule a consultation. We’re happy to answer all your vision-insurance-related questions.

COVID-Related Conjunctivitis: What You Should Know

If you’ve recently been diagnosed with or tested positive for COVID-19, and you’re experiencing red, itchy, and painful eyes, it’s possible you may have COVID-related conjunctivitis. A call to your eye doctor in Champaign, IL, may provide answers.

What Is Conjunctivitis?

Conjunctivitis is an inflammation in the conjunctiva of the eye. It’s contagious, so once you have it, you should refrain from touching your face as much as possible. You should also wash your hands frequently in the event you rubbed your eyes without realizing it. This will help prevent other people in your household from catching the infection.

How Does Conjunctivitus Affect the Eyes?

Your conjunctiva is the delicate, clear tissue that covers and protects the whites of your eyes and the insides of your eyelids. Its purpose is to protect your eye from dust and dirt and to keep the front of your eye and the back of your eyelid moist and lubricated. When your conjunctiva becomes inflamed due to a viral infection, your doctor may diagnose pink eye. Pink eye is a common form of conjunctivitis, and it causes the blood vessels in the eye to swell, turning the whites of your eyes pink. This condition is rarely severe and usually clears up on its own within a few days, but it can cause painful itching and sensitivity to light while it lasts.

What Should I Do About COVID-Related Conjunctivitis?

Applying a damp compress to the affected eye may help relieve irritation from conjunctivitis. You should also contact your medical doctor if you think your condition may be related to COVID-19. Your eye doctor may also want to perform a comprehensive eye exam in Champaign, IL, to rule out more serious issues. Call Champaign Eye Professionals to schedule an appointment today.