Westside Optometry
Newsletter for February 2016
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Westside Optometry Issue No. 43


“Enhancing lives with personalized vision care”
Dear Karen,
Valentine’s Day and Hearts dominate our thoughts at the beginning of February. A healthy heart reminds me of the reason I dilate your eyes. Examining the retina and retinal blood vessels can indicate vascular changes in other organs of the body, including the heart. Changes in the retinal blood vessels are often seen in patients with hypertension, diabetes and other diseases. If you haven’t had a dilated eye examination in 2 years, call to make an appointment to protect your eyes and heart health.
Karen Griffith
Westside Optometry

Red Spot on the Eye
conjunctival hemorrhage

Many of us have had a blood red spot on the white of the eye at one time or another. Usually there was no injury or discomfort. Many people wake-up with the red spot and may not even be aware of it until a family member or co-worker points it out. Subconjunctival hemorrhages look worse than they are and do not need treatment.
While it may look frightening, a subconjunctival hemorrhage is essentially harmless. The blood from the broken conjunctival vessel becomes trapped in the space underneath the clear conjunctival tissue. The blood naturally absorbs within one to three weeks and may turn greenish or yellow during this time.
A subconjunctival hemorrhage does not affect vision or cause pain, and treatment is usually not required. Exceptions are when the bleeding is a result of trauma or injury, the redness lasts more than 10 days or when it recurs again.
And of course, if you are unsure call our office. (707)762-8643

Computer Eyestrain
There are many symptoms of computer vision syndrome: eyestrain, headaches, blurred vision, dry eyes, watery eyes, tired or burning eyes, squinting, and eye pain.
If you experience any of the above, here are a few things you can do now to improve your situation.
Lighting is one of the biggest problems. Light should be distributed equally to avoid discomfort. The overhead lights and windows are often too bright. If possible dim the lights over your computer and rearrange your workstation to avoid facing bright light sources such as a window. Use blinds to adjust the light allowed into the room.
If auxiliary lights are used they should be low wattage and not make the documents or desk brighter than the computer screen. Remember you are trying to equalize the lighting.
Workstation set-up is also within your control. Avoid reflective materials such as white or shiny surfaces. Desktops should be matte.
Lower the monitor and increase blink rate to reduce tear evaporation which contributes to dry eyes.
Take a Break. Follow the 20-20-20 rule. Take a 20 second break every 20 minutes. Focus your eyes on images at least 20 feet away.
It is important to have an accurate spectacle or contact lens prescription for computer use. Often a prescription designed just for the computer can relieve most eye symptoms.
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March 3rd Eyewear Event
Westside Optometry is hosting an evening designer eyewear event from 3:00-7:00. We are featuring Gucci as seen above and Kate Spade as seen below. We will have drinks and appetizers to enjoy while you try on the latest glasses and sunglasses. Stop by Westside Optometry Thursday, March 3rd between 3 and 7.
Fast Facts
ACCOMMODATION is the act of focusing the eye to achieve clear vision at a specific distance.
You have increased risk of  glaucoma if you:
  • have diabetes
  • have a family history of glaucoma
  • have poor vision or pronounced nearsightedness
  • are African-American, Irish, Russian, Japanese, Hispanic, Inuit or Scandinavian
  • take corticosteroid medication like Prednisone
 You can make your appointment online.
 Dr. Karen Griffith
Dr. Karen Griffith is the primary optometrist and owner of Westside Optometry. She has been in practice since 1988.
Westside Optometry is located at 320 Petaluma Blvd. South
in Petaluma.
 (707) 762-8643