Will Evelyn keep her baby blues?

By Dr. Allyson Kowaleski

Keeping Those Baby Blues

The color of a baby’s eyes is determined by how much melanin is created by their melanocytes. Melanocytes located within the baby’s iris begin to secrete melanin in response to light exposure once the baby is born. This is why most Caucasian babies are born with blue eyes. Over time, if very little melanin is secreted, they will stay blue. If a moderate amount is secreted, they will turn green or hazel, and a large amount will lead to brown eyes. The amount of melanin secreted is linked to genetics, so a baby’s eye color is determined by his or her parents’ eye colors. Babies’ eye colors will usually change most in their first six months, but it may continue to change subtly over their first three years. A small percentage of people, less than 10%, may experience eye color change throughout life.

Evelyn’s dad has blue eyes and I have brown so it would seem she has about a 50/50 chance of keeping her baby blues. Here’s hoping!

From the eye doctors, opticians and staff at Rinkov Eyecare Centers. We’ve provided comprehensive eye exams, contact lenses, eyeglasses, sunglasses and medical treatment of eye disease such as cataract treatment in Columbus, Ohio, for over 35 years. Come see an optometrist at one of our Columbus locations – Downtown, West, East, Westerville, Dublin, Bexley, Worthington and Nationwide Plaza. 

CARE : 20|20 : LIFE®

*this advice is general in nature and does not constitute an exam. For specific advice, see your eye doctor or healthcare professional.*

How Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome can affect the eyes

Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome

Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome is a variety of genetic disorders that affect the body’s ability to correctly produce collagen. Collagen is important in the production of connective tissue because it gives it stretch and strength. Since connective tissue is present in many different and important parts of the body, Ehlers-Danlos syndrome can affect many of the body’s important organs including but not limited to the skin, joints, lungs, eyes, cardiovascular system and gastrointestinal system. Some individuals may experience severe and even life threatening symptoms, while others tend to be mild. In the eye, Ehlers-Danlos may first be noted in children due to the appearance of extra folds of skin near the inner corner of the eyes. Patients may also have a thin sclera, or in rare cases, a hole in the sclera. Nearsightedness has also been associated with Ehlers-Danlos syndrome.

From the eye doctors, opticians and staff at Rinkov Eyecare Centers. We’ve provided comprehensive eye exams, contact lenses, eyeglasses, sunglasses and medical treatment of eye disease such as cataract treatment in Columbus, Ohio, for over 35 years. Come see an optometrist at one of our Columbus locations – Downtown, West, East, Westerville, Dublin, Bexley, Worthington and Nationwide Plaza. 

CARE : 20|20 : LIFE®

*this advice is general in nature and does not constitute an exam. For specific advice, see your eye doctor or healthcare professional.*

The truth about over-the-counter reading glasses

reading glasses

Around age forty, many people begin to have trouble seeing to read. Many people are tempted to try over-the-counter reading glasses. While these glasses may work for some people, they have their limitations. Over-the-counter reading glasses provide the exact same prescription in both lenses, which most people do not have. Also, they provide no correction for astigmatism, which is very common. Prescription reading glasses from your eye doctor are able to correct your prescription precisely. They can also give you multiple focal distances all in one pair. Therefore, you would be able to focus on your computer monitor and focus to read a book all with one pair of glasses. Over-the-counter reading glasses, on the other hand can only focus at one point, causing you to have to carry multiple pairs of glasses.

For proper reading glasses that fit your exact prescription, visit your eye doctor or schedule an appointment online.

From the eye doctors, opticians and staff at Rinkov Eyecare Centers. We’ve provided comprehensive eye exams, contact lenses, eyeglasses, sunglasses and medical treatment of eye disease such as cataract treatment in Columbus, Ohio, for over 35 years. Come see an optometrist at one of our Columbus locations – Downtown, West, East, Westerville, Dublin, Bexley, Worthington and Nationwide Plaza. 

CARE : 20|20 : LIFE®

*this advice is general in nature and does not constitute an exam. For specific advice, see your eye doctor or healthcare professional.*

Improve dry eye with a warm compress

warm compress on eyes

How a warm compress helps dry eye

Warm compresses are an important part of dry eye therapy. In many cases of dry eye, the meibomian glands along the eyelid margin often become clogged with hardened oil and surface debris. This leads to an inability to produce the thick protective outer layer of the tear film and results in excess tear evaporation. Warm compresses help to loosen the hardened oil and debris that are clogging the oil-producing glands, and warm compresses aid in the body’s natural ability to maintain an appropriate tear film.

How to use a warm compress on eyes

A warm compress may be performed in many ways. The most common type is to take a warm clean wash cloth, heat it as warm as possible (but not too hot to cause damage) and lay it across the closed eyes for 10-15 minutes, rewarming as needed. This method works well but can become bothersome to rewarm the cloth repeatedly.

Other options include microwaving the wet washcloth for about 5 minutes or microwaving a rice sack or other commercially available products. Place the warm washcloth over the eyes then lay the heat source over the washcloth and relax for 10-15 minutes.

Be careful not to overheat the cloth or the heat source, and never use it if it’s hot enough to cause damage. Warm compresses are usually performed two times a day until improvement is noted and then tapered accordingly.

From the eye doctors, opticians and staff at Rinkov Eyecare Centers. We’ve provided comprehensive eye exams, contact lenses, eyeglasses, sunglasses and medical treatment of eye disease such as cataract treatment in Columbus, Ohio, for over 35 years. Come see an optometrist at one of our Columbus locations – Downtown, West, East, Westerville, Dublin, Bexley and Nationwide Plaza. 

CARE : 20|20 : LIFE

*this advice is general in nature and does not constitute an exam. For specific advice, see your eye doctor or healthcare professional.*

Back to school contact lenses

Back to school contact lenses

As many children are seeing their eye doctor for their annual eye exams before school starts, many are considering contact lenses in addition to their glasses. Contact lenses have several benefits over glasses.

Better peripheral vision is attained with contact lenses. It is not possible to look out beyond the edge of the lens with contact lenses as it is with glasses. This can be very helpful when playing sports like football and basketball.

Glasses lenses tend to fog when going from cold to warm environments or when the wearer is hot and sweating. This does not happen with contact lenses. Contact lenses also won’t slide down the end of your nose when sweating, like glasses can.

Better vision is attainable with strong prescriptions with contact lenses. Glasses lenses will magnify or minimize the image seen when the prescription is high, while true image size is attained with contact lenses.

While contact lenses may not be for everybody, they do have benefits beyond just cosmetic advantages.

From the eye doctors, opticians and staff at Rinkov Eyecare Centers. We’ve provided comprehensive eye exams, contact lenses, eyeglasses, sunglasses and medical treatment of eye disease such as cataract treatment in Columbus, Ohio, for over 35 years. Come see an optometrist at one of our Columbus locations – Downtown, West, East, Westerville, Dublin, Bexley and Nationwide Plaza. 

CARE : 20|20 : LIFE

*this advice is general in nature and does not constitute an exam. For specific advice, see your eye doctor or healthcare professional.*

Safety glasses and tool time: Prevent power tool eye injuries

safety glasses prevent power tool eye injury

Although warnings are often written all over power tools, it can never be stated too often how important it is to wear safety glasses while using them. It is all too common to see injuries in the eye doctor’s office from power tool accidents. We often find metallic foreign bodies in the cornea as a result of cutting or grinding metal without safety glasses. If pieces of metal or wood penetrate the eye, the eye can be lost. If they are just embedded in the cornea, they can be removed at the eye doctor’s office. However, they most often scar and can permanently affect vision.

Stop by one of Rinkov Eyecare Centers’ eight convenient locations to check out the latest safety glasses.

From the eye doctors, opticians and staff at Rinkov Eyecare Centers. We’ve provided comprehensive eye exams, contact lenses, eyeglasses, sunglasses and medical treatment of eye disease such as cataract treatment in Columbus, Ohio, for over 35 years. Come see an optometrist at one of our Columbus locations – Downtown, West, East, Westerville, Dublin, Bexley and Nationwide Plaza. 

CARE : 20|20 : LIFE

*this advice is general in nature and does not constitute an exam. For specific advice, see your eye doctor or healthcare professional.*

Increase comfort with polarized sunglasses

polarized sunglasses

Polarized sunglass lenses are created by incorporating a special filter in the lens that blocks horizontally polarized light. The horizontally polarized light is created when light is reflected off of flat surfaces such as water or a flat road. This type of light or glare can be intense and distracting. Polarized sunglasses greatly improve comfort by reducing this type of light and are considered a necessity by those who drive for a living or are outdoor enthusiasts. The ultraviolet protection is not impacted by the polarization process.

Rinkov Eyecare Centers now in Worthington!

Dr. Kamer Rinkov Eyecare Centers Worthington

Rinkov Eyecare Centers is now serving patients in Worthington, Ohio, after acquiring Clear Image Eyecare on June 1.

Dr. Donald J. Kamer, optometrist at Clear Image Eyecare, will continue to serve patients at the Worthington office. A 2002 graduate of The Ohio State University College of Optometry, he joins Rinkov Eyecare Centers’ team of seven optometrists and Rinkov Eyecare Centers’ seven locations in Westerville, Dublin, Reynoldsburg, Hilliard, Bexley, Nationwide Plaza and Gay Street in downtown Columbus.

“Dr. Kamer is an award-winning optometrist, and he runs a phenomenal practice,” said Dr. Mark Rinkov, optometrist and CEO of Rinkov Eyecare Centers. “His staff is friendly and courteous, and he has earned a high level of trust and respect with his patients. We are honored to have Dr. Kamer join our team of highly skilled optometrists.”

Rinkov Eyecare Centers will upgrade the new Worthington office with minor renovations, install additional advanced diagnostic equipment, expand its frame lines and provide electronic medical records that are linked to all Rinkov Eyecare Centers offices. Dr. Kamer will also use Rinkov Eyecare Centers’ innovative 20-Point Eye Exam®, which includes many important assessments that most patients haven’t previously received elsewhere, at no extra charge. This comprehensive exam can uncover early signs of health risks as well as eye conditions that need immediate attention.

In addition to the Worthington acquisition, Rinkov Eyecare Centers hired an additional optometrist, Dr. Jordan T. Bierman, for its expanding West Broad Street office. Dr. Bierman graduated from the Illinois College of Optometry in 2013 and will be coming to Rinkov Eyecare Centers from his residency at the Huntington VA Medical Center in Huntington, W. Va.

“We are continuing to invest in our support center and focus on new systems as part of our growth strategy. We have grown our staff by 40% since 2011, and we are continuing to pursue other acquisitions,” said Jeff Rinkov, President of Rinkov Eyecare Centers. “We are committed to continued growth, making investments, hiring the right people, adopting innovative technology and ensuring that every patient receives the absolute, best quality eye care.”

Fireworks and Eye Safety

fireworks eye safety eye injury

As the 4th of July approaches, eye safety should be at the top of all fireworks users mind. According to some recent statistics from Prevent Blindness America, injuries to the eye accounted for 16% of fireworks injuries in 2013, with 40% of injuries occurring in children under 15 years of age. These injuries often occur to people who are only watching the fireworks display. Many erroneously believe that sparklers are safe and even give them to their small children. Sparklers accounted for 31% of injuries in children under five. Because sparklers burn at 1200F, they are not a safe firework for children. To prevent eye injuries, it is best to avoid fireworks altogether, and at a minimum wear safety glasses. If an injury does occur, medical treatment should be sought immediately.

From the eye doctors, opticians and staff at Rinkov Eyecare Centers. We’ve provided comprehensive eye exams, contact lenses, eyeglasses, sunglasses and medical treatment of eye disease such as cataract treatment in Columbus, Ohio, for over 35 years. Come see an optometrist at one of our Columbus locations – Downtown, West, East, Westerville, Dublin, Bexley and Nationwide Plaza. 

CARE : 20|20 : LIFE

*this advice is general in nature and does not constitute an exam. For specific advice, see your eye doctor or healthcare professional.*

Contact lenses and allergies

Contact Lenses and Allergies

Many patients come in this time of year complaining of contact lens intolerance.  Sensitivity to changes in the environment can cause inflammation and dryness of the eyes, but this doesn’t always mean you have to give up your contact lenses. For some patients, switching to a different cleaning solution can help rid the lens of irritating particles. Other patients may find relief by using prescription or over-the-counter allergy eye drops before or after lens wear. Daily disposable lenses can also provide increased comfort since they ensure a clean, fresh lens with each wear.

If you are having comfort or vision issues with your current lenses it is best to schedule an appointment with your eye doctor to see which of these solutions may work best for you.

From the eye doctors, opticians and staff at Rinkov Eyecare Centers. We’ve provided comprehensive eye exams, contact lenses, eyeglasses, sunglasses and medical treatment of eye disease such as cataract treatment in Columbus, Ohio, for over 35 years. Come see an optometrist at one of our Columbus locations – Downtown, West, East, Westerville, Dublin, Bexley and Nationwide Plaza. 

CARE : 20|20 : LIFE

*this advice is general in nature and does not constitute an exam. For specific advice, see your eye doctor or healthcare professional.*