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!

Sports Vision Training : The Athletes Unfair Advantage Over The Competition

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

Sports Vision Training Indiana Levin Eye Care Center

When we think of athletes, we probably think of speed and strength first, but there is an unfair advantage some athletes are using called sports vision training.

Strong visual skills are just as important to an athlete’s success as strong muscles. Athletes have to process visual information quickly so that they can respond to it. The cool thing is that, like muscles, some visual skills can be improved with practice. Sports vision training improves the acceleration and efficiency of your eye tracking capabilities. We have a set of activities and equipment specifically designed for athletes to improve processing speed, visual acuity, vergence (binocular vision), tracking, and reaction time at levels that beat the competition.

What Visual Skills do Athletes Use?

Here are some of the most essential visual skills that help athletes perform at the top of their game:

  • Color vision. It’s a lot easier to recognize the difference between teammate and opponent when you can see the different jersey colors!
  • Depth perception. Athletes need to be able to judge the distances of objects and other players.
  • Dynamic visual acuity. Beyond just having clear vision, athletes need to be able to see fast-moving objects clearly too.
  • Eye tracking. Athletes also need to be able to track fast-moving objects with their eyes instead of jeopardizing their balance by turning their heads or torsos.
  • Eye-hand-body coordination. Being able to adjust the position of your body, hands, and feet based on what you see is essential for succeeding in sports.
  • Peripheral vision. Athletes need to be able to react to what’s happening at the edges of their vision, not just the things happening straight ahead.
  • Visual concentration. An athlete needs to be able to focus on what matters even when there are a lot of distractions trying to draw their eyes.
  • Visual reaction time. The faster an athlete can process and respond to visual information, the faster they can get into position.
  • Visualization. Athletes need to be able to picture different scenarios to prepare themselves for potential obstacles and opportunities — all while focusing on the events of the moment.
  • Visual memory. An athlete must keep a great deal of visual information in their heads while playing, including the positions of other players based on where they saw them last.

You Can Train Your Visual Skills on the Go

You won’t need a gym to train several of these visual skills. A simple exercise for depth perception, for example, is to hold a pen at arm’s length and repeatedly put the cap on it. You could also hold a small pebble at arm’s length and try dropping it into a drinking straw.

A great way to train peripheral awareness is by turning our heads to the side while we use a computer or watch TV. We can improve the flexibility of our eyes by switching rapidly between focusing on something close and something far away. To practice dynamic visual acuity, try cutting out different sized letters from a magazine and taping them to a turntable. Then see how well you can identify the letters when it spins at different speeds.

Take a peek how Four Time NBA Champion, Two Time MVP and Finals MVP Steph Curry uses Sports Vision Training to achieve excellence on the court.

Keep Your Eye on the Ball, Athletes!

If NBA Champions Michael Jordan, Steph Curry, and Kawhi Leonard have used sports vision training to rise to elite levels, then why shouldn’t you follow their lead?  Keeping our eyes sharp (and healthy) is something we might overlook but when thinking about staying in shape for sports. From professional athletes sinking a three pointer at the final second to commercial pilots flying the friendly skies. Sports Therapy Training is a game changer and makes all the difference in the world.

If you’ve played sports, then you know an inch and a millisecond can be the difference between a win and loss. Gain the advantage on and off the field with the Levin Eye Care Center sport vision training program!

Call/Text 219-659-3050 to learn how to gain an unfair advantage over your competition.

Thank You For Voting Levin Eye Care Center The Best Eye Care Center Again!

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

Best Vision Care NWI Levin Eye Care Center

Levin Eye Care Center has proudly served Northwest Indiana and Chicagoland for nearly 50 years and our doctors and team provides the finest quality care to every patient who walks through the door.

Whether we’re administering our award-winning Vision Therapy Program to identify hidden learning-related vision problems or treating and rehabilitating everything from lazy eye to misaligned eyes to visual motor complications from traumatic brain injury.The goal is the same: to provide the quality comprehensive eye exams and superior patient care that leads to visual enjoyment and a higher quality of life.

“We could not have won the honor of Best Vision Care again without our doctors and staff who are committed to excellence and take pride in the care we offer to each patient,” says Dr. Steven Levin, who received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Indiana Optometric Association in 2021. “And we look forward to continuing to serve the eye care needs of the Region for many years to come.”

Thank you for your continued support and for making Levin Eye Care Center the best eye care center in Northwest Indiana!

Story originally posted in the Northwest Indiana Times Best of the Region 2022 Healthcare 

Know the Signs of Child Eye Problems

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

Child Eye Problems Solved Levin Eye Care Center

Understand Why Child Eye Problems Can Go Undiagnosed

Kids are much less likely than adults to recognize that the problems they’re having are because their eyes aren’t working properly. This means they can’t describe what they’re experiencing to adults. Such children will continue to struggle with an undefined obstacle. They might become distracted and fidgety, and an adult might scold them for it, which only makes things worse. All they know is they’re being scolded for not doing as well as their peers, even if they’re trying their hardest.

Healthy eyesight is hugely important to a child’s development and education.

As much as 80% of all learning is visual, and it’s estimated that more than half of childhood learning difficulties come from undiagnosed vision problems. What can parents do to ensure their kids don’t have to struggle with the social and educational disadvantages of an undiagnosed vision problem?

Vision Problems a School Nurse Might Miss

Inability of children to self-report isn’t the only reason a vision problem might go undiagnosed. Another big one is that many of them don’t receive comprehensive eye exams before starting school. School nurses will test students’ visual acuity using the big E chart, but healthy eyesight is a lot more complicated than having 20/20 vision. Here are some vision problems the school nurse will miss:

  • Astigmatism. Refractive errors that cause blurry vision but which aren’t always caught in a vision screening. Can lead to amblyopia if not treated with corrective lenses.
  • Amblyopia. Also known as “lazy eye,” this means poor vision in one eye due to astigmatism, a difference in refractive errors between the two eyes, or crossed eyes. Can result in irreversible vision loss without treatment.
  • Convergence Insufficiency. The eyes drift outward when trying to focus on up-close things, making reading and other close tasks difficult.
  • Strabismus. A misalignment of the eyes where they turn out, in, down, or up. Can be corrected by patching, special glasses, or surgery.

Signs Parents Should Watch For

Certain symptoms of child eye problems are very obvious to an observer, like an eye pointing in the wrong direction or frequent squinting. Others need more careful observation. Here are a few signs that would merit a comprehensive eye exam (though we recommend them no matter what):

  • Frequent blinking and eye rubbing
  • Short attention span, especially for close work
  • Difficulty with reading or avoidance of it
  • Frequent headaches
  • Habit of covering one eye
  • Habit of tilting the head to the side
  • Tendency to hold reading materials very close to their face
  • Difficulty remembering what they just read
  • Tendency to lose their place while reading

Why Wait to Schedule Your Child’s Eye Exam?

Every parent wants to give their child the best chance in life, and making sure they don’t have an eye problem that could interfere with their education and development is a big part of that — and one many parents have no way of knowing about! To learn more about eye problems that often go undiagnosed in children, please give us a call!

Healthy eyesight is crucial for a lifelong love of learning!

Vision Therapy Corrects Lazy Eye!

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

Maddie was experiencing challenges in school because of the visual condition amblyopia commonly know as lazy eye. Her right eye showed signs of suppression and blurred vision and not working with her left eye. Even though previous doctors did not recognize this condition, her mother wanted a second opinion. She found Levin Eye Care Center because of their success with HTS vision therapy in correcting amblyopia related difficulties without surgery.

Since completing the Vision Therapy program at Levin Eye Care Center, Maddie is more confident in school and displays improved ocular motor skills. Also, she is less frustrated, and able to read at a grade level above her current placement. Comfortable vision is critical to a child’s academic development and maturity. Our in office program combined with HTS Vision Therapy yields amazing progress and enables patients to maintain their gains longer.

Maddie Now Exhibits:

  • Improved balance and hand-eye coordination
  • Lazy Eye Corrected (Amblyopia)
  • Improved Ocular motor skills when reading
  • Uses both eyes together
  • Reads above grade level

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!

View Video
Give your child the academic advantage with our Vision Therapy program!

A Vision Therapy Program At Home And In Office Produce Massive Results!

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

vision therapy exercises at home

Ian was experiencing academic challenges in school with writing, spelling reading, and doing school assignments. He had trouble with focusing at near and external stimuli were overwhelming his senses. His teachers thought that he was experiencing symptoms of dyslexia. However, several of his family friends recommended the Vision Therapy Program at Levin Eye Care Center because of their success in correcting these difficulties with Vision Therapy.

Since enrolling in Vision Therapy, Ian now enjoys reading longer and has more patience when learning.

Ian Now Exhibits:

  • Increased patience when doing schoolwork
  • Improved Ocular motor skills when reading
  • Improved focus when reading
  • Enhanced depth perception
  • Greater confidence and a better attitude in school

Since completing the Vision Therapy program at Levin Eye Care Center, Ian is more confident in school and displays a positive attitude. Also, Ian is less frustrated, able to control his emotions better, and enjoys more quality time with his family. Comfortable vision is critical to a child’s development and an office and home Vision Therapy program give 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!

Is Blue Light Bad for Our Eyes?

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

Is Blue Light Bad for Our Eyes Levin eye care center

How big of a role does a bright screen play in your nightly routine?

Since the advent of handheld devices that could access the internet, a lot of us have been browsing websites late into the night, our eyes glued to a bright little screen, making sure we haven’t missed any updates before we go to sleep. As optometrists, we can’t endorse this bedtime ritual. Screens emit a lot of blue light, which affects both our internal clocks and our eye health.

The Physics of Visible Light

The range of colors we can see is known as the visible light spectrum, a tiny sliver of the electromagnetic spectrum. Red light is the lowest energy light we can see and violet light is the highest. Below red light is infrared and above violet light is ultraviolet radiation. (Fun fact: the reason the sky and ocean appear blue to us is that blue light scatters more easily than other colors.)

The Impact of Artificial Light on Our Internal Clock

No matter how tech-savvy we are, we can’t change the biology of our eyes. Across all of human history, it’s only been in recent decades that blue light came from anywhere besides the sun. Blue light signals our brains that it’s daytime and we should be awake. When we look at our screens late into the evening, we effectively trick our brains into thinking it’s not bedtime yet.

Turn Off the Blue Lights Before Bed

If you’ve noticed that you don’t feel tired until very late at night or that you struggle to fall asleep once you’re in bed, late-night screen usage probably isn’t helping. We recommend either putting the screens away at least an hour before bed or checking out different screen settings that can reduce the blue light after sundown. This tiny change makes a big difference in quality of sleep as well as your eye health!

When the sun goes down, it signals our bodies that it’s time to sleep. Biologically, we aren’t used to the concept of artificial light, which can be a problem when there’s so much of it around us. When we use our devices before bed, we’re beaming subconscious signals to our brains that it’s not time to sleep yet. Our brains respond by suppressing the release of melatonin, an important neurotransmitter that helps us sleep.

The result is that it takes us longer to fall asleep than it would otherwise and lowers our overall quality of sleep, which feeds into all the negative health effects of sleep deprivation. A great way to avoid all these sleep issues is to simply put our devices away in the hour before we go to sleep. In cases where that isn’t possible, use the night mode function to cut out the blue light.

View Video

Is Blue Light Bad for Eye Health?

Blue light is so close to UV radiation on the electromagnetic spectrum, many optometrists are concerned that it could be similarly harmful to our eyes, potentially increasing the risk of conditions like age-related macular degeneration.

A more immediate concern from blue light exposure is digital eye strain. After hours and hours of looking at a bright screen, our eyes might ache or struggle to focus, and we can even get headaches. Computer glasses and screen filters help make screens easier to look at, but a great trick is the 20-20-20 rule. Every 20 minutes, take a 20 second break to focus on an object 20 feet away.

We Can Answer Your Questions About Blue Light

If you’ve been experiencing symptoms of eye strain and want recommendations or you have other questions about how blue light can impact eye health, we’d love to discuss it with you at our practice! We want all of our patients to have the information they need to keep their eyes healthy.

Give us a call or text 219-659-3050 if you are experiencing negative effects from screen time.  Schedule your appointment today!

Learn About Child Vision Development

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

Child Vision Development Levin Eye Care Center

Did you know that babies have to learn how to see?

It might seem strange, since using our eyes is something we do automatically all day, but babies need to develop a number of visual skills in order to effectively use their eyes and process what they’re seeing, just like they have to learn how to walk and talk. Parents can be a big help to the child vision development process, particularly by choosing age-appropriate toys.

What a Baby Sees in the First Six Months

An infant’s world is made up of light, shadow, and blurry shapes. They can only effectively focus on things 8-15 inches away — coincidentally the perfect distance to see the face of the person holding them! Over time, they begin to see things more clearly and sharply, and parents can help in several ways:

  • Fill their surroundings with color. It takes a few weeks before a baby’s color vision starts to develop, and once it does, they won’t be able to get enough of bright, pretty colors. That’s why they enjoy mobiles.
  • Help them get used to tracking movement with their eyes by moving objects in front of them.
  • Play peek-a-boo. This isn’t only to make them laugh (even though that already makes it worth doing); it’s a great way of giving them practice focusing their eyes.

The Dramatic Progress in Months 6-12

Hand-eye coordination begins to develop around month six, and parents can help by keeping Baby well supplied with colorful objects to grab and play with. Crawling also helps them learn coordination (which does sometimes come at the price of some bumps on the noggin, since they haven’t learned that their heads don’t stop at their eyes yet).

Months 6-12 are when your baby will get bored of peek-a-boo. The reason they love peek-a-boo so much in the early months is that they don’t understand object permanence yet, so it looks like magic to them, but eventually they figure out the trick: Mom and Dad aren’t blinking out of existence when they’re out of sight, they’re just hiding behind their hands! At this point, you can change the game and start hiding toys under a blanket and challenging them to find them.

Toddlerhood and Advanced Visual Skills

Toddlers gain a lot of coordination when they learn to walk, and playing with balls helps too. Comprehension and balance are big factors in a toddler’s visual skills. When they begin talking, they start putting names to the objects they see, and around age two, they might discover burgeoning artistic talent. Make sure they have access to paper and crayons! Big, interlocking blocks or wooden blocks are also great for toddlers.

Early Childhood Eye Exams

As important as it is to provide the right types of toys and play the right games with your baby, eye exams are critical to the child vision development process. Babies and toddlers lack the words and understanding to communicate to us if something is wrong with their eyesight, so more than anyone else, they need an eye doctor to check for them. This is why we recommend scheduling the first eye exam at six months and another around their third birthday.

View Video

Let’s get your child started on a life of healthy vision together!

Call or Text 219-659-3050 to book your comprehensive eye exam today with our award winning team!

Completing vision therapy brings success!

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

Completing Vision Therapy at Levin Eye Care Center

Completing vision therapy has accelerated Tommy’s path to success

Tommy was experiencing trouble in school with focus, reading and playing sports but even with aid from teachers, it was not enough to get him to the levels required for success.

Since enrolling Tommy in Vision Therapy, he can now locate words and perform visual tasks successfully with improved motor skills. Tommy can now cross the midline after completing vision therapy at Levin Eye Care Center. When we move our arm or leg across the middle of our body to perform a task this is crossing the midline.

Tommy Improved:

  • Ocular motor skills
  • Speed completing schoolwork
  • Better focus when playing sports and in school
  • Better depth perception
  • Improved grades

After completing Vision Therapy at Levin Eye Care Center, Tommy can move his eyes without moving his body and maintain his focus for longer times. Corrected vision is critical to a child’s development, learning processes, and athletics. Tommy’s family made the investment in their child’s future with vision therapy and it will pay off tenfold as he grows into an adult.

If you have a child or adult who has any of these symptoms, we can help! Call or text us at 219-659-3050 to schedule an appointment today!

Vision Therapy Program pays off tenfold!

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

Vision Therapy Student Levin Eye Care Center Indiana Chicago

Vision Therapy Success for Oscar!

Oscar was having trouble in school with focus and reading but even with help from teachers, it’s was not enough. That’s when his parents decided it would be best to perform a google search and find the help he needed for his vision and school work. The reviews speak volumes about the success and importance of the Vision Therapy program offered by our office.

Since enrolling Oscar in Vision Therapy he can now identify words precisely and perform visual tasks successfully. Corrected vision is very important to a child’s learning, social development, and even extends to athletics. This is critical to a child’s progress and long-term success. 

Oscar Improved 

Since finishing our Vision Therapy program at Levin Eye Care Center, Oscar is able to move his eyes independently now and keep his attention focused for longer times.

We are so proud of his progress and is on his way to becoming a star student and super reader in the classroom! Leaders are readers and the future is bright for Oscar and his family.

If you have a child or adult who has any of these symptoms, we can help! Call or text us at 219-659-3050 to schedule an appointment today!