EyeMark Newsletters

A list of all our EyeMark Newsletter Articles

MYTH OR MISSUS?


These days there's a lot of talk about the Easter bunny. I know, I know... it's that time of year. And while some people are talking about world politics and water shortages, there are people who actually spend their time debating about whether the Easter bunny exists. Is he real? Is he a myth? Is he even a he? Well, I don't have much to say on the subject. But it does remind me of all those crazy myths relating to people's eyes. Like I always say, I'm just an old pair of glasses so what do I know? But here are some eye myths that always make me laugh... Watching TV will give kids square eyes. Yeah. I know a lot of parents who say a lot of things to their kids to get them to do what they want. And this one is a classic... don't watch too much TV or your eyes will go square. Do I need to point out that this one's a myth? On the subject, sitting too close to the TV won't actually damage your vision. It might give you one serious headache, but that's about it. Same thing about reading in the dark. Sure, it might strain your eyes and you could find yourself with another headache. But your vision won't actually be affected if you read in the dark. So next time your husband doesn't want to see a foreign movie because he says reading subtitles will damage his eyes, you go...
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HELPING THE VISUALLY IMPAIRED "SEE"


Today's world is designed for those who can see. Having said this, over 300 million people in the world are partially sighted or blind. How do they cope with the daily tasks taken for granted by those who are sighted, tasks such as identifying everyday objects at home, while shopping or at work? How do they decipher specific details, like instructions on a ready-made meal or dosage directions on medication? Usually, a visually impaired person must rely on having sighted people nearby to help in these common situations. The problem is there is not always a sighted person around, and even if there is, the visually impaired person often feels uncomfortable to be constantly relying on other people.  One innovative solution to these issues is Be Specular, a mobile application that can enable visually impaired people (VIPs) to lead more independent lives. BeSpecular is a simple and quick way for a VIP to ask a question and have it answered within minutes by someone anywhere in the world. A VIP uses the app to make a request about an object or situation with which he needs help. He may send a picture plus a text or voice message, or upload a picture directly from the phone's gallery. A sighted helper (Sightling) receives a notification of the VIP's request, sees the pictures sent by the VIP, listens to the question, and replies via a voice or text message. If the Sightling is unavailable for any reason, he can let the query expire,...
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COULD MY MEDICATION AFFECT MY EYES?


Every year on April 25th, World Malaria Day, a spotlight is shone on this serious and sometimes fatal disease that plagues most tropical regions of the world. While it is potentially life-threatening, malaria is both preventable and treatable. The global theme for World Malaria Day 2017 is "END MALARIA FOR GOOD". Throughout the world, research is constantly being conducted to find high quality, effective and safe treatment and preventive drugs, with encouraging results. As effective as these medications are, they are not without side effects, and it is important to be cognisant of these. As well as antimalaria drugs, other medications have side effects, ranging from mild to quite serious, temporary to longer-lasting or even irreversible. These may be short-term drugs for specific illnesses or medications for chronic conditions. Some medications interact with each other, exacerbating the side effects or rendering each drug less effective. What is often overlooked in drug side effects is that the eyes are as vulnerable as the rest of the body. In most cases, eye problems clear up when the drugs are discontinued, or the symptoms can be treated in various ways. Drops can be used for many of these symptoms, but these sometimes mask the problem, not allowing for early detection, and possibly causing further damage. Acne Medications Adolescents who take certain acne medication have been found to face twice the risk of eye infections. The most common problem is conjunctivitis, an inflammation or infection of the membrane lining the eyelids. Other problems include styes,...
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CATARACTS

Cataracts
A cataract is a painless clouding of the internal lens of the eye. Light enters the eye through the transparent lens, and is focused onto the retina at the back of the eye. The retina transmits the visual signal through the optic nerve to the brain where the image in interpreted. Because they block light from passing through the lens, cataracts make it difficult to see clearly and can even cause blindness over time. Cataracts are progressive, and are the leading cause of vision loss in people over the age of 40, although sometimes they can be seen in younger people. Congenital cataracts can be present at birth or appear shortly after or at some time during infancy or childhood. How do cataracts affect vision? While cataracts are painless and not hazardous to the health of the person or the eye, over time they can interfere with day to day functioning. They develop gradually, often in both eyes but seldom equally. Because they develop slowly, most people are unaware of the vision loss at first, but as the clouding progresses, the person finds difficulty with distance vision, reading in low light or driving, particularly at night. Symptoms of cataracts The main symptom of cataracts is blurry or cloudy vision at any distance. Other problems with the eyes can also cause blurry vision, but cataracts produce certain characteristic symptoms, which may include worse vision in dim light, sensitivity to bright light or glare, even indoors, a perception that colours are faded or...
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