Monday, December 8, 2014

Saving the animals!

The little found dog, who now has a forever home!
In case you couldn't tell, the Optimist Optometrist REALLY loves animals.  In fact, zoology was my major in college, and I thought for many years that I would be a veterinarian.  (working in a vet's office cured me of that idea). 

A couple of weeks ago, this cute little dog somehow made his way into my fenced yard.  He REALLY wanted to play with my two dogs (who are a little older, so they were pretty worn out after meeting the stray dog). 

The new dog (we will call him Gus, as that is what his new owner named him) looked like he was part Chihuahua and maybe part jack Russell terrier.  He had a lot of energy and just wanted to play.  He was friendly, but a little scared at first.  I fed him, and one of my neighbors and I took turns keeping him.  He had a collar but no tags.  No microchip either.

We put signs up in the neighborhood, and posted his info on Facebook and Craigslist.  Nobody was looking for this adorable little dog.  We found him a permanent home with another neighbor, and he is doing quite well.  I see my neighbor walking Gus often, and he always look happy.  I'm so glad he has a good home now.

Finding this little dg really made me want to help animals.  I had an idea while I was running (did I mention I did a half marathon at Thanksgiving?) of a way I could help... I thought, "what can I do that not everyone can do, to raise money for pets?"... and then I decided I would do a day of eye exams where all the proceeds would go to our local Humane Society!

Today was the day we did the event, which I called, "Save the Animals!  Eye Exams to Benefit the Humane Society."  I am so proud to say that today we raised over $500, and also got donations of pet food and treats!  I'm so excited to be able to help in this way.

I would love for each of you to think of a way you can make a difference.  It can be very rewarding to help out those less fortunate.  It's one reason I continue to be optimistic :).

Friday, September 5, 2014

What you see is not always what you get

Hello, friends and lovers of all things optometry and optimism.  Welcome back.

This post is not going to be very optometry-heavy.  I was just feeling the urge to share a quote I saw somewhere:

"Don't compare your behind-the-scenes to someone else's highlight reel."

That's great advice, huh?  We see highlight reels so often these days, don't we?  Social media thrives on them!  We get all excited about our happy times and we want to share them, right?

I don't see any problem in sharing your happy times.  But remember, people post their HAPPY STUFF on social media sites, not the sad stuff that they don't want to share with the world. 

So, you're allowed to have sad days and days where you wish things turned out differently.  This is your life, live it and make the best of it.  You have so much greatness ahead of you, and you've got one heck of a highlight reel yourself! 

Just my thoughts for the day!  Go out and make this an awesome day!

Staying optimistic when skies are gray

Hello, my friends!  Wow, has it really been a year since I have written?  A year can go by so quickly sometimes. 

I just wanted to share something about one of my wonderful patients.  All of my patients are wonderful, but this one is especially kind and thoughtful.  The optimist optometrist has had some very joyous and very sorrowful situations this past year, and this patient, at her last eye appointment, said that she sensed that without even seeing me.  She told me that she was thinking of me, and that she was so appreciative of the care I have offered her over the years.  I am so thankful when patients are thankful!  I feel very lucky, because I get to work with some of the kindest patients on the planet. 

Speaking of joy and sorrow, check this out:

"On Joy and Sorrow
 Kahlil Gibran

Your joy is your sorrow unmasked.
And the selfsame well from which your laughter rises was oftentimes filled with your tears.
And how else can it be?
The deeper that sorrow carves into your being, the more joy you can contain.
Is not the cup that holds your wine the very cup that was burned in the potter's oven?
And is not the lute that soothes your spirit, the very wood that was hollowed with knives?
When you are joyous, look deep into your heart and you shall find it is only that which has given you sorrow that is giving you joy.
When you are sorrowful look again in your heart, and you shall see that in truth you are weeping for that which has been your delight.

Some of you say, "Joy is greater than sorrow," and others say, "Nay, sorrow is the greater."
But I say unto you, they are inseparable.
Together they come, and when one sits, alone with you at your board, remember that the other is asleep upon your bed.

Verily you are suspended like scales between your sorrow and your joy.
Only when you are empty are you at standstill and balanced.
When the treasure-keeper lifts you to weigh his gold and his silver, needs must your joy or your sorrow rise or fall."

This piece is something that has hit home with me lately.  We all will have sad or difficult times in our lives.  Everyone does.   But sometimes we need to go through sad times to be able to fully appreciate good times.  We all have good times too.  I'm trying to appreciate all the times in my life, whether pleasant or not.  Hope you do too.

Wishing you all a wonderful weekend :)

Monday, May 13, 2013

I wear my (prescription) SUNGLASSES at night

Hello, friends!  I hope your day is starting off well.  This month is my birthday month, and I try to do little celebretory things each day of the month to remind myself how lucky I am to be alive and healthy.  I'm a very lucky girl!

One aspect of my life that I'm very grateful for is my fabulous group of friends.  There are times in our lives when our friends play a huge role - where they are more like family.  I am lucky to have great friends and a great family. 

One of the friends I speak of is my friend Egg Beater.  You might think that's a strange name for a friend, huh?  Well, when I was a freshman in college, my roommates named all of our friends after kitchen tools.  We had wooden spoon, spatula, egg beater, etc.  I would often get messages that said "Egg Beater called at 3:45 pm," or something like that.  Anyway, Egg Beater recently asked me to write a post on the worth of prescription sunglasses, so here it is!

My opinion on Rx sunglasses is this:  Sunglasses in general are ALWAYS a good idea.  If you wear contacts all the time or have good distance vision, then prescription sunglasses are not a top priority for you because you can purchase non-prescription sunglasses and still see well.  However, if you're like Egg Beater (you have a high prescription in your glasses), then prescription sunglasses are an awesome idea and worth the cost.

Sunglasses protect your eyes from UV-A and UV-B rays that can damage your eyes.  Skin cancer around your eyelids, along with cataracts and corneal or retinal burns can all be the result of sun exposure to your eyes.  None of those things sound fun, right?  Wear some sunglasses!

I'd like to also stress the importance of protecting your child's eyes from the sun.  You put sunscreen on your kid when they go to the beach, right?  Please protect their eyes from the sun as well, you'll be glad you did!

One last awesome thing about sunglasses (Rx or not):  They make you look super hot.  Haven't you seen cool celebrities sporting shades before?

Anyway, the optimist optometrist is very proud that you're thinking about your eye health and that you are going to protect your eyes from the sun.  Speaking of which, I'm off of work today, so am going to grab my sunglasses and head to the beach!  Hope your day is as great as mine is shaping up to be!!!

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

My doctor said I have narrow angles - What the heck does that mean??

Hello, friends!  Thanks for reading today.  I hope each of you had an awesome weekend.  I just got back from doing a triathlon at the Space Center.  It was beyond cool!  The cycling was a bit more than I'm used to but I'm glad to say that it went pretty well.

I am very lucky to have wonderful people in my life.  One of them is my aunt Lisa.  She is awesome - kind, loves animals, compassionate, loves to travel, can find great deals, ... you name it.  Anyway, she asked me to write a post on narrow angles, so here it is!

So, there's a part of the eye called the angle.  It's called an angle because that's eactly what it is.  It is a space between (cue the Dave Matthews song here) the cornea and the iris that can be different sizes in different people. 

Generally (but of course there are exceptions to every rule):

FARSIGHTED individuals (Hyperopic; Glasses prescription is a "plus" or "+" prescrption, cannot see well up close) generally have narrower/smaller angles than their nearsighted friends.

NEARSIGHTED individuals (Myopic; glasses prescription is a "minus" or "-" prescription, cannot see well far away) usually have more wide or open angles.

So what's the problem if you have narrow angles?  In some cases, it's no big deal.  However, in other cases, narrow angles can cause the pressure in the eye to build up, leading to something you probably don't want to have called glaucoma.  The eye pressure builds up sometimes in narrow angles because the angle is where the fluid drains - too much fluid and not enough draining leads to increased pressure.  Kind of like my garbage disposal last week (it wasn't pretty).

If you are concerned about narrow angles, go see your friendly optometrist so they can take a look at your eyes.  I promise once again that we are SO NICE!  We want to help you and we love questions!!  So ask us, we want to help!

Your optometrist can use a microscope called a slit lamp to look at your eye magnified many times.  We can see how shallow or deep your angle is.  If it is very narrow or shallow and we are concerned that the fluid isn't properly draining, we may send you to a spccialist to do a cool laser treatment to allow for better drainage.  Basically, the laser forms a tiny hole in the colored part of the eye so that the fluid has another way to go.  If your doctor recommends this procedure, please don't worry - it's a pretty quick procedure and doesn't cause any pain.

I hope you have found this post helpful, and I hope you are trying to make each day your best!  Have a wonderful week.  :)

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Appreciation of the present

Hello, friends.  Just feeling really thankful and wanted to share.  I was reminded recently on how important it is to let go of things/people/ideas in your life that no longer serve you.  The past, that you may long for now, was ignored by you when it was the present.  The present is all you have!  Live for now.  I'm trying to do that myself.

So, it's really rainy here and rain makes me think.  Just wanted to share my rainy day thoughts!  Hope you all have a wonderful weekend.

Monday, April 29, 2013

Tetris is an awesome game!

Could Tetris help treat Adult Amblyopia?

The mesmerizing falling blocks seen in the Tetris video game could be a helpful tool for treating adult amblyopia, according to a small study in Current Biology.

The study involved 18 adults with a history of amblyopia. Half of the participants in the study played Tetris with their stronger eye patched. The other half had special goggles in place during their Tetris games. The goggles allowed the participants to see the falling blocks with their weaker eye, and the ground plane objects with their stronger eye.

The participants who wore the goggles fared better than the ones who patched their stronger eye. There was a statistically significant difference in vision improvement of the lazy eye and depth perception in the participants who were using the goggles. The researchers concluded that forcing the eyes to work together was more beneficial than patching, although both groups showed some improvement in the vision of their lazy eye.

Computers and video games have often been used as aids during vision therapy. Making the eyes work together through use of special video games is one treatment for children and adults with amblyopia.


“Dichoptic training enables the adult amblyopic brain to learn.” Current Biology, Volume 23, Issue 8, 22 April 2013, Pages R308-R309.

Jinrong Li, Benjamin Thompson, Daming Deng, Lily Y.L. Chan, Minbin Yu, Robert F. Hess

“Tetris may help adults with lazy eye, study finds.” From Huffington Post Online, April 23, 2013.