The Importance Of Keeping Eyelids Clean

Written by Levin Eye Care on . Posted in Contact Lenses, Eye Health

keeping eyelids clean

Your eyelids do more than blink!

They also protect your eyes from dirt, dust, and other irritants affecting your eyelids and vision. We can help you manage and prevent these common eyelid disorders from keeping your eyes healthy and looking their best.

Don’t let eyelid issues keep you from seeing clearly. 

The eyes are the window to the soul, but the eyelids are the guardians that protect them. Eyelids are the first line of defense against harmful particles, dust, and other irritants that can damage the eyes. They also play a crucial role in maintaining eye health and vision. However, like any other body part, eyelids are prone to various disorders affecting their functions. We’ll look closer at eyelids’ functions, some of the most common ailments, and how to keep eyelids clean.

Functions of Eyelids:

Eyelids are an essential part of the eye, performing several functions to maintain eye health and vision. One of their primary functions is to protect the eyes from dirt, dust, and other irritants that can cause damage or infection. They also help keep the eyes moist and lubricated by producing tears, which are essential for preventing dryness and discomfort. Additionally, eyelids regulate the amount of light that enters the eyes, ensuring that the eyes are not overloaded with too much light, which can cause damage.

Common Disorders of Eyelids:

  1. Blepharitis: This is a common condition where the eyelids become inflamed and swollen. A bacterial infection typically causes it and can cause redness, itching, and irritation.
  2. Ptosis: This is a condition where the upper eyelid droops over the eye, partially or entirely blocking the vision. It is caused by weakness in the muscles that control the eyelid.
  3. Entropion: This is a condition where the eyelid turns inward, causing the eyelashes to rub against the eye’s surface. This can cause irritation, redness, and even damage to the cornea.
  4. Ectropion: This is a condition where the eyelid turns outward, exposing the inner surface of the eyelid. This can lead to dryness, redness, and irritation.
  5. Style: A stye is a small, painful lump that forms on the eyelid. A bacterial infection usually causes it and can cause redness, swelling, and tenderness.

Managing and Preventing Eyelid Disorders:

Good eyelid hygiene is essential for preventing infections and other eyelid disorders. Fortunately, many eyelid disorders are preventable and treatable. Wash your face and eyelids regularly with a gentle cleanser, avoiding rubbing or scratching your eyes and keeping your hands clean. If you wear contact lenses, follow proper hygiene practices, such as disinfecting them regularly. Our office recommends using Occusoft eyelid scrub and cleansers for an easy solution to good eyelid hygiene and assist in keeping eyelids clean. 

View Video

If you experience any eyelid disorder symptoms, such as redness, swelling, or pain, seeking immediate medical attention is essential. We can diagnose the underlying cause of your symptoms and provide the necessary treatment.

Call or text us at 219-659-3050 to schedule an appointment, and let us help you see clearly for years to come.

Don’t wait until it’s too late; take action now to protect your eyesight.

How Vision Therapy Helped My Child Overcome Her Struggles in Kindergarten

Written by Levin Eye Care on . Posted in Child and Pediatric Care, Children, Uncategorized, Vision Therapy

Vision Therapy Helped My Child Overcome Her Struggles in Kindergarten

Before vision therapy

Gretchen’s family had multiple discussions with the school regarding special education and being held back. They placed Gretchen in the school RTI (response to intervention) program regarding reading struggles. Gretchen was experiencing struggles in kindergarten with handwriting and had a hard time with reading sight words. Also, she lacked confidence and was down on herself for not doing as well as her twin sister.

Her family spent many hours helping Gretchen after school, and she continued to have challenges. Before starting kindergarten, Gretchen was evaluated by another pediatric eye specialist in Northwest Indiana. Still, surprisingly they did not diagnose Gretchen with any problems because there is a family history of visually learning-related challenges.

Gretchen’s grandmother is a retired teacher who previously had a student who was having struggles in kindergarten with the same issues but had success with the Levin Eye Care Center vision therapy program. She took an interest in her student’s eye care issues because the family has a history of double vision. She was glad she kept the Levin Eye Care Center paperwork and suggested we have Gretchen evaluated there.

This year (second grade), the school has asked if they could test Gretchen for reading impairment and other health impairment-vision due to falling behind her classmates. Gretchen did the first round of Vision Therapy and saw much improvement in her reading, sight words, spelling, and writing skills, but she needed additional vision therapy to catch up to her classmates.

After Vision Therapy

Gretchen now exhibits the following:

  • Excels academically and is excited about school
  • Mastering her sight words
  • Receives A’s and B’s on the report card 
  • Reading more fluently, mastering spelling tests, and writing better
  • Boost in confidence, wants to go to school and enjoys doing her homework

Since completing the Levin Eye Care Center vision therapy program, Gretchen has had a fantastic work ethic and strong reading and listening comprehension. She enjoys working on her reading fluency and written expression. Gretchen appears to be happier overall with being successful in school and feels proud of herself for learning to read, doing well in math, mastering spelling tests, and reading books herself.

If your child or grandchild is having trouble in school and their future is a priority, make a positive change before it’s too late.

Protect your child’s future and schedule an appointment with our award-winning team at Levin Eye Care Center! 

Lab-Grown Retinal Eye Cells Could Offer A Possible Cure For Blindness

Written by Levin Eye Care on . Posted in eye disease, Eye Health, Glaucoma

cure for blindness

New Study with Stem Cells Offers Possible Cure for Blindness

In a groundbreaking study, researchers have successfully grown retinal eye cells in a laboratory and have made successful connections with the existing cells. This development is a major step forward in the treatment of eye diseases and possible cure for blindness. This study could pave the way for clinical trials in the near future.

The study was conducted by a team of researchers at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, who used stem cells to create retinal cells in a laboratory setting. These cells were then transplanted into the eyes of mice, where they successfully integrated with the existing cells.

This is significant because the retina is a complex structure that contains many different types of cells, each with a specific function. For a treatment to be successful, it needs to be able to produce all of these different cell types and ensure that they can work together to restore vision.

Previous attempts to transplant retinal cells have not been successful, as the transplanted cells were often rejected by the body or failed to integrate with the existing cells. This new study, however, has demonstrated that it is possible to grow retinal cells in a laboratory and have them successfully connect with the current cells.

A New Nope for Treatment

The researchers hope this development will pave the way for clinical trials in humans, potentially leading to a cure for blindness. Millions of people worldwide suffer from vision loss or blindness, and this new technology and stem cell treatment could offer them hope for a better future.

The potential benefits of this technology are immense, not just for people with vision loss or blindness but for the broader field of regenerative medicine. If successful, this technology could treat various conditions, such as Parkinson’s disease, diabetes, and heart disease.

More Tests are Still Needed

However, much work must be done before this technology can be used in clinical trials. The researchers will need to conduct further studies to ensure that the cells are safe and effective for use in humans, and they will need to develop a method for producing large quantities of cells for transplantation.

Despite these challenges, the success of this study represents a major breakthrough in regenerative medicine. It demonstrates that it is possible to grow complex tissues in a laboratory setting and have them successfully integrate with the body’s existing cells. With further research and development, this technology could potentially change the lives of millions worldwide.

We look forward to seeing what amazing results develop from this study and future clinical trials!

Contact the experts at Levin Eye Care Center to ensure you are adequately screened for eye diseases and maintain healthy eyes.

Normal Eye Pressure and Glaucoma

Written by Levin Eye Care on . Posted in Eye Health, Glaucoma

normal eye pressure older woman

Glaucoma: Causes, Symptoms, and Treatment

Glaucoma is a serious eye disease that can lead to blindness if left untreated. It affects people of all ages, but the risk increases with age. According to the World Health Organization, glaucoma is the second leading cause of blindness worldwide! We will discuss the causes, symptoms, and treatment of glaucoma and the importance of maintaining normal eye pressure.

Causes of Glaucoma

Glaucoma is caused by damage to the optic nerve, which is the nerve that connects the eye to the brain. This damage is usually caused by high pressure inside the eye, also known as intraocular pressure (IOP). However, some people can develop glaucoma with normal IOP, known as normal-tension glaucoma.

The most common type of glaucoma is open-angle glaucoma, which occurs when the drainage canals in the eye become clogged, causing pressure to build up. There are other less common types of glaucoma to watch out for, such as angle-closure and congenital glaucoma.

Symptoms of Glaucoma

There are usually no symptoms in the early stages of glaucoma, and it is often called the “silent thief of sight.” However, as glaucoma progresses, symptoms can develop, including:

  • Loss of peripheral vision
  • Blurred vision
  • Halos around lights
  • Eye pain
  • Nausea and vomiting (in severe cases)

If you experience these symptoms, you should see an eye doctor immediately. Early detection and treatment are crucial in preventing vision loss.

Treatment of Glaucoma

Glaucoma treatment aims to lower the IOP to prevent further damage to the optic nerve. The treatment options include:

  • Eye drops: These are usually the first line of treatment used to reduce fluid production in the eye or increase fluid drainage from the eye.
  • Laser surgery: Laser trabeculoplasty is a type of surgery that is used to increase the drainage of fluid from the eye.
  • Conventional surgery: Trabeculectomy is a type of surgery that is used to create a new drainage channel for fluid to leave the eye.

Normal eye pressure

Maintaining normal eye pressure is crucial in managing glaucoma because high IOP can cause damage to the optic nerve, leading to vision loss. It is important for patients with glaucoma to stick to their treatment plan, including taking prescribed medications and attending regular follow-up appointments with their eye doctor to monitor their IOP and overall eye health.

Glaucoma is a serious eye disease that can lead to blindness if left untreated. Early detection and treatment are crucial in preventing vision loss!

If you have glaucoma symptoms or concerns about your eye health, you should immediately schedule an appointment at Levin Eye Care Center.

Myopia Management for Children

Written by Levin Eye Care on . Posted in Child and Pediatric Care, Children, Myopia Management, Vision Therapy

Myopia Management for Children at Levin Eye Care Center

Myopia, or nearsightedness, is a growing problem among children today, with diagnosis rates increasing yearly. It’s vital to manage myopia in children to ensure they can maintain good vision throughout their lives. But why is myopia management for children so important, especially in school? Let’s take a closer look.

The Importance of Good Vision for Learning

Good vision is essential for children’s success in school and can better take in the information presented in the classroom, whether written on the board, in a textbook, or computer screen. This is especially important in the early school years when children are still developing their reading and writing skills. Good vision helps children focus, concentrate, and retain information easier, setting them up for success in the classroom and beyond.

The Link Between Myopia and Learning

Myopia can have a significant impact on children’s ability to learn. Children with myopia have trouble seeing things clearly in the distance, making it difficult to see the board or a teacher’s gestures from their seats in the classroom. This can make it difficult for them to fully participate in class and comprehend, leading to lower grades and difficulty keeping up with their peers.

Children with myopia are also more likely to experience eyestrain and headaches, which can further impact their ability to focus and concentrate in the classroom. Over time, myopia can progress if left untreated, leading to more severe vision problems, such as retinal detachment or cataracts!

Myopia Management for Children

The good news is that myopia can be managed, and several options are available to help children succeed in the classroom. Some of these options include:

  • Prescription glasses or contact lenses are the most common form of correction for myopia and can help children see things clearly in the distance.
  • The 20-20-20 rule: When using a digital device for extended periods, every 20 minutes, look at something 20 feet away for 20 seconds.
  • Limit Screen time: Train children to use screens 24 inches or farther away rather than under 12 inches, which is too close to the eyes.
  • Lifestyle changes: Encouraging children to spend more time outdoors and engaging in physical activity can help reduce the risk of myopia progression.

The Importance of Regular Eye Exams

Regular eye exams are essential for myopia management in children. Eye exams help identify myopia early on and track its progression, allowing doctors to make any necessary adjustments to the child’s prescription. Regular eye exams also help detect other vision problems affecting a child’s ability to learn, such as astigmatism or amblyopia (lazy eye).

In conclusion, myopia management is essential for children’s success in the classroom. Good vision is critical for learning, and children with myopia are at a disadvantage if their condition is not correctly managed. 

If you have concerns about your child’s vision, schedule a comprehensive eye exam with Levin Eye Care Center. With the proper treatment and lifestyle changes, children with myopia can maintain good vision and continue to succeed in the classroom and beyond!

How Does Uncontrolled diabetes Impact Eye Health?

Written by Levin Eye Care on . Posted in Eye Health

Uncontrolled diabetes

Uncontrolled diabetes can wreak havoc on health in many ways, including eye health.

All types of diabetes increase the risk of developing eye diseases including diabetic retinopathy, diabetic macular edema, glaucoma, and cataracts. When these diseases all go under the umbrella term “diabetic eye disease,” it means diabetes is one of the world’s leading causes of blindness.

The Types of Diabetes

All three types of diabetes impact eye health even though they don’t work the same way. Type 1 is typically diagnosed early in life. When the pancreas cannot produce insulin, that’s type 1 diabetes. Up to 95% of diabetes cases are type 2, typically diagnosed decades into adulthood. In type 2 diabetes, the body is unable to efficiently use insulin to regulate blood sugar. Some pregnant women are affected by gestational diabetes, which behaves like type 2 diabetes but is temporary.

Increased Risk of Cataracts With Diabetes

Diabetics are five times more likely to develop cataracts. High blood sugar can make the lens of the eye swell and accumulate opaque proteins until it becomes cloudy. Vision loss due to cataracts is reversible with modern cataract-removal surgery, however, so the effects don’t have to be permanent.

Diabetic Retinopathy and Macular Edema

When blood sugar is high, so is the blood’s acidity, and this can cause actual damage to blood vessels. In the eyes, this creates a major problem in the delicate capillaries that nourish the retinas. When those capillaries weaken enough to begin leaking blood into the eye (creating the symptom of dark blotches or floaters across the field of vision), this is diabetic retinopathy. The body tries to fix this by growing new blood vessels, but the new vessels are unstable and more likely to leak.

10% of diabetic retinopathy cases will eventually develop into diabetic macular edema (DME), which is the buildup of fluid in the macula (the area of the retina that gives us our central vision). This creates distortions and washes out the colors and may require surgical treatment to restore normal vision.

Glaucoma Is More Likely With Diabetes

It may surprise you to learn that the fluid in our eyes doesn’t just stay there for our entire lives. It exists in a cycle to constantly replace and replenish it — an essential part of eye health. Glaucoma is the result of the cycle being interrupted. Pressure builds against the optic nerve and causes permanent damage, including blindness. Diabetics are more susceptible to glaucoma, and the symptoms aren’t always obvious. The best way to catch it early is with regular eye exams!

Eye Exams Protect Your Eyesight!

Yearly eye exams are key to early diagnosis and treatment for sight-threatening conditions, and they’re particularly important for anyone at high risk, like people with diabetes. Some sight-threatening conditions are irreversible but they can at least be slowed and controlled when we catch them early. Managing diabetes is also essential. If the blood sugar remains as close to normal as possible, diabetes can’t put eye health in as much danger, and the risk remains at levels similar to people without diabetes.

You next eye exam could save your life! Uncontrolled diabetes can wreak havoc on your health if left unchecked. Call or Text us at 219-659-3050 today!

Why We Have Different Eye Colors : What Science Can Show Us

Written by Levin Eye Care on . Posted in Child and Pediatric Care, Eye Health

why we have different eye colors

Melanin, the same compound that determines skin and hair color, is also responsible for why we have different eye colors.

Melanin helps to protect the eye by absorbing light (including some UV light) that hits the iris, which is the part of the eye that controls the amount of light that reaches the retina.

How Rare Are Different Eye Colors?

Anyone living in an English-speaking country might have the impression that eye colors like blue, hazel, and brown are about equally distributed across the population, but if you look at the whole planet, the ratios are very different. Brown eyes in varying shades are by far the most common, while blue eyes likely all trace back to a single common ancestor with a specific mutation. These are the percentages of different eye colors in the population:

  • Brown: 70-79%
  • Blue: 8-10%
  • Hazel: 5%
  • Gray: 3%
  • Green 2%
  • Red or violet: less than 1%
  • Heterochromia (partly or completely different-colored eyes): 1%

Types of Melanin and Pigment

Melanin in the iris comes in two different types: eumelanin (which produces a deep chocolate brown color) and pheomelanin (which produces colors ranging between amber, green, and hazel). But what about blue eyes? Blue eyes are basically the absence of melanin. There isn’t any actual blue pigment present, but like the sky and the ocean, blue irises get their color from the way the light scatters around the iris, called Tyndall scattering.

Eyes can be green if there is some melanin present but not enough to completely obscure all of the Tyndall scattering, so there’s a bit of blue appearance mixing with yellowish pigment. Eyes are hazel when they have just enough melanin to obscure any Tyndall scattering. Very rare red and “violet” eyes (typical in albinism, as pictured above) come from a total lack of melanin in all layers of the iris, so the color is a combination of Tyndall scattering and the blood vessels being more visible.

The Genetics of Eye Color Is Complex

In recent years, scientists have found that eye color isn’t only controlled by a single gene but by as many as 16 genes working in tandem. Tiny changes to any of those genes can lead to a different color. This means that you can’t always predict a child’s eye color based on how their parents’ eyes look. Blue-eyed parents won’t necessarily produce blue-eyed children every single time.

Why Do Babies Often Start With Blue Eyes?

Sometimes babies (most commonly caucasian babies) are born with blue or gray eyes that change to a different color over time. Just like the way some kids have platinum blonde hair that darkens nearly to brown in adulthood, it can take time for the cells in their eyes to produce melanin. Exposure to light can trigger melanin production, and that can’t happen until they’ve been exposed to light for a while.

Other Causes of Eye Color Change

You probably had a friend in school who claimed their eyes would change colors every day. More likely it was a trick of the light based on how their eyes reflected the different outfits they wore. Eye color can also appear different with changes in pupil size or the type of light the person is in. Aging can cause a very gradual change in eye color with more melanin production, and an eye injury can also cause permanent eye color change. David Bowie was a famous example of this.
View Video

Interested in Artificially Changing Your Eye Color With Contacts?

For the last few decades, anyone who has wanted a change in their eye color could turn to color contacts. If you’re interested in changing your eye color with contacts, we can help! Just keep in mind that a colored layer curving over the round surface of your eye won’t look quite the same as natural eye color in a flat layer beneath the surface of the eye.

We love seeing our patients’ beautiful eyes! Schedule your appointment today!

Diabetic Eye Exams Are More Important Than You Think!

Written by Levin Eye Care on . Posted in Child and Pediatric Care, Eye Health

Diabetic Eye Exams Levin Eye Care Center

Diabetes is a disease that can negatively affect health in many ways, including healthy eyesight.

Diabetes brings with it an increased risk of developing several different eye diseases. These are grouped under the umbrella term “diabetic eye disease,” and they include cataracts, glaucoma, diabetic macular edema (DME), and diabetic retinopathy. With all of these combined, diabetes is a leading cause of blindness all across the world and that’s why it’s so important to schedule your routine diabetic eye exams.

The Mechanics of Diabetes

Type 2 diabetes (or gestational diabetes, which works the same way while it lasts) impairs the body’s ability to use insulin to regulate blood sugar effectively. If it isn’t carefully controlled, this can lead to periods of high blood sugar. Sugar feeds harmful bacteria, so high blood sugar is hard on blood vessels and raises the risk of infection. Let’s take a closer look at what that means for these sight-threatening conditions.


People with diabetes are two to five times more likely to develop cataracts than people without. The reason diabetes increases the risk of developing cataracts because poorly controlled blood sugar can cause swelling in the eye’s lens, and can cause opaque proteins to accumulate in the lens, making it cloudy. Fortunately, cataract removal surgery is a very common, safe procedure.


Our eyes are constantly replacing the fluids inside them to keep functioning properly. Glaucoma is when the pressure on the optic nerve increases, and damage occurs (up to and including permanent blindness). Diabetics are more likely to develop glaucoma than their non-diabetic peers. Glaucoma doesn’t always have symptoms in the early stages, which is one reason it’s so important to keep up with regular eye exams.

View Video

Diabetic Retinopathy And DME

Retinopathy is when the blood vessels in the back of the eye leak blood into the fluid that fills the eye, appearing as dark blotches in the field of vision. Our eyes attempt to compensate for the damaged blood vessels by growing new ones. This isn’t very effective because the new vessels are fragile and more likely to leak than the original ones.

High blood sugar puts a serious strain on blood vessels, which is why diabetes is such a serious risk factor for retinopathy. If it advances far enough, diabetic retinopathy can become DME, which involves blurred central vision and can lead to retinal detachment and blindness.

Protect Your Sight with Regular Diabetic Eye Exams

Your two best resources for protecting your sight from the effects of diabetes are you and your eye doctor. If you can keep your blood sugar close to normal levels, you will reduce your risk of these eye diseases. Meanwhile, when you come in for regular eye exams, we can check for any early signs of problems, reducing the risk of blindness by as much as 95 percent.

Do you have diabetes or a loved one who does?

Give us a call or text to schedule your appointment today! 219-659-3050


At Home Vision Therapy Program Helps Reduce Chronic Headaches!

Written by Levin Eye Care on . Posted in Child and Pediatric Care, Eye Health, Vision Therapy

At home vision therapy graduate Levin eye care

Madeline complained about constant headaches and motion sickness on car rides before coming to the Levin Eye Care Center home vision therapy program. She had lost all interest in reading because of the challenges with headaches. Also, she was having problems maintaining consistent grades throughout the school year and struggled with time management, especially completing assignments.

Since enrolling in Vision Therapy, Madeline now enjoys reading for leisure and has more patience at school.

Madeline Now Exhibits:

  • Increased patience when doing homework
  • Improved ocular motor skills when reading
  • Improved accommodation (focusing ability) when reading
  • Enhanced convergence (when eyes move inward to focus)
  • More confident and a better attitude at school

Since completing the Vision Therapy program at Levin Eye Care Center, Madeline is more confident in school, reading aloud, and displays a positive attitude. Now, Madeline has fewer headaches, can control her focus longer, and enjoys school more due to increased comprehension skills.

Comfortable vision is critical to a child’s development and an at home Vision Therapy program combined with office visits gives the best results.

If these symptoms sound familiar, either for you or a child in your life, we can help! Call or text us at 219-659-3050 to schedule an appointment today!


Combat Digital Eye Strain

Written by Levin Eye Care on . Posted in Child and Pediatric Care, Contact Lenses, Eye Health

Combat Digital Eye Strain Levin Eye Care Center

How much of your day do you spend looking at a screen?

Whether it’s your work computer, a tablet, or your smartphone, odds are if you’re living in the modern world, you’re probably spending a big chunk of your day with your eyes fixed on a bright screen. Unfortunately, digital eye strain is a common result. It takes less than two hours of daily screen time to create a 90% risk of digital eye strain. No wonder over ten million people see eye doctors about it each year!

Symptoms and how to combat Digital Eye Strain

There’s a good chance that many of our parents are dealing with digital eye strain symptoms without realizing it, such as:

  • An itching or burning sensation in the eyes
  • Either an unusually dry or watery feeling in the eyes
  • Blurred or double vision
  • Frequent headaches and neck, shoulders, or back soreness
  • Increased sensitivity to light
  • Trouble concentrating
  • Difficulty keeping eyes open

Many of these symptoms can be a drain on productivity, which is a serious problem for anyone who works on their computer. One way to fight back is to reduce screen time, but that isn’t possible for everyone. Fortunately, there are several easy strategies we can follow to keep the strain away.

Optimize Your Workspace for Eye Comfort

Did you know that the angle of your computer screen can make a big difference to your eyes? Maximize eye comfort by keeping the screen at least 20 inches away from your eyes, a little below eye level, and angled slightly upward. Keep reference materials in easy view so that you don’t have to constantly turn your head to look at them.

What Other Light Sources Are You Using?

The screen itself might not be the only issue. Are your eyes dealing with a combination of the screen, overhead lighting, and glare from the windows? See if you can eliminate sources of glare without compromising that comfortable screen-to-eye angle and distance. If you don’t have the ability to rearrange your workspace, a glare filter is a good alternative.

Live by the 20-20-20 Rule

One reason we become so susceptible to eye strain while looking at screens is that we tend not to blink as often as we would otherwise. A great trick to compensate for this is following the 20-20-20 rule. For every 20 minutes of screen time, take a quick 20-second break to focus on an object at least 20 feet away. You can start out with reminders until it becomes a natural habit.

Reduce Strain With Computer Glasses

The same way we use sunglasses to protect our eyes from the sun, we can wear computer glasses that filter out blue light to make those bright screens a little easier on our eyes. This solution might not work for everyone; computer glasses often have a yellow tint, so they probably aren’t the best option for graphic designers.

Ask the Optometrist

The last, best resource you have to combat digital eye strain is the optometrist! Don’t keep suffering these symptoms in silence. Come see us and we can discuss the best solutions for your eye strain. We can also make sure the symptoms aren’t coming from a different problem with your vision.

Thank you for making us your partners in lifelong vision health!