The world is blurry place for those living with a disease that impairs their vision.
According to the American Academy of Ophthalmology, the number of Americans who can’t see clearly is on the rise. Almost 1.3 million Americans 40 and older are blind and almost 50 percent of U.S. residents over 45 have cataracts. That doesn’t include the more than 2.7 million Americans ages 40 and over who have glaucoma.
Luckily, many forms of eye disease are preventable. Eileen Linder, optometrist and owner of Eye to Eye Optometry Group in Antioch, has more than 28 years of helping East County residents keep their eyes healthy.
“We offer professional eye care with a personal touch,” said Linder. “We’re committed to helping the people of East County look and see their best by providing individualized solutions based on vision and eye-health requirements.”
To maintain the health of your eyes, Linder recommends seeing an optometrist for a healthy eye exam annually or every other year for those who do not have vision or health issues, such as diabetes.
Besides regular eye exams, there are steps everyone can take to improve the health of their eyes.
Diabetic eye disease can cause severe vision loss and even blindness. Controlling diabetes can prevent or delay vision loss. High blood pressure is another disease that can lead to blurred vision or blindness, and hypertension can cause damage to the blood vessels in the retina, fluid build up under the retina and nerve damage.
Additionally, smoking significantly increases the risk of developing cataracts, a clouding of the eye’s natural lens, which is the leading cause of blindness.
Managing your health also includes proper nutrition, exercise and maintaining a healthy lifestyle.
“Manage your health, especially if you have diabetes or high blood pressure,” said Linder. “Do not smoke!”
According to Linder, protecting your eyes from the sun is also essential.
“Wear sun protection and protection from blue light if you’re on the computer for long periods of time,” she said.
Exercise is another way people can maintain the health of their eyes, as regular exercise reduces the risk of several common eye ailments, including cataracts and glaucoma.
Many of Linder’s patients have followed her advice to improve the health of their eyes.
“Dr. Linder is the best at what she does,” said Antioch resident Linda Crossen. “When you get quality care, personable service and excellent professionalism, you don’t want to go anywhere else.”
According to Crossen, she would have lost her vision if it were not for Linder. When Crossen experienced pain in her eye, she called Linder’s office. Even though it was after hours, the doctor opened the office to examine Crossen and quickly identified a detached retina.
Crossen thereafter underwent surgery, which saved her vision.
Besides helping her patients maintain the health of their eyes, Linder also gives back to the community, volunteering for programs that provide access to eye care for people who aren’t able to afford it, including the California Vision Project. She also hopes to partner with local fire departments to donate artificial tears and eye wash.
Eye to Eye Optometry Group is located at 4051 Lone Tree Way, Suite E, in Antioch. For more information, visit www.eyetoeyedoctor.com or call 925-757-7676.