Firework Safety

There is really no safe age for shooting off fireworks. They are explosives after all. Here are a few safety tips from the Consumer Product Safety Commission for shooting off fireworks at home.

  • Do not allow young children to play with fireworks.
  • Older children should be permitted to use fireworks only under close adult supervision.
  • Do not allow any running or horseplay.
  • Set off fireworks outdoors in a clear area, away from houses, dry leaves, or grass and other flammable materials.
  • Keep a bucket of water nearby for emergencies and for pouring on fireworks that fail to ignite or explode.
  • Do not try to relight or handle malfunctioning or “dud” fireworks.
  • Soak them with water and throw them away.
  • Be sure other people are out of range before lighting fireworks.
  • Never light fireworks in a container, especially a glass or metal container.
  • Keep unused fireworks away from firing areas.
  • Store fireworks in a cool, dry place.
  • Check instructions for special storage directions.
  • Observe local laws.
  • Never have any portion of your body directly over a firework while lighting.
  • Do not experiment with homemade fireworks.

If your child or someone you know is hit with a firework in or near the eye, call your eye doctor as soon as possible!!

Is that really all I can do? Just call my optometrist?!? Well no but that is the first thing you should do. In fact, we have a good list of things you should NOT do. Fireworks-related eye injuries can combine blunt force trauma, heat burns and chemical exposure. Take a look.

    Do NOT rub your eyes.
  • Do NOT rinse or flush your eyes.
  • Do NOT apply pressure.
  • Do NOT remove any objects that are stuck in the eye.
  • Do NOT apply ointments or take any pain medications.

WE get it. This is a lot of don’ts. But the best thing you can do is see your optometrist as soon as possible. An eye injury from fireworks is considered a medical emergency and needs to be treated by a medical professional.

If you have any sort of eye emergency contact Mabee Eye Clinic at (605) 996-2537.

Correction for Astigmatism

If you have an astigmatism, you have a wide range of options to correct your vision problem. In consultation with your optometrist, you can select the treatment that best meets your visual and lifestyle needs. The option available for most patients include: spectacle correction, soft contact lenses, gas permeable contact lenses, or specialty contact lenses to include hybrid contact lenses.

Toric contact lenses are used to describe soft contact lenses that are designed to correct astigmatism. Toric contacts have different powers in different parts of the lens to correct the varying amounts of nearsightedness or farsightedness in different parts of the eye. These lenses also rotate to the proper alignment on the cornea so the power in the lenses matches the appropriate meridians of the eye for clear vision. Fitting toric contact lenses can take a little longer and typically costs more than a regular lens exam.

Rigid gas permeable, or RGP, contact lenses can also correct astigmatism, but do not need a toric design like soft contact lenses. RGPs hold their shape on the eye instead of following the irregular shape of the cornea of an eye with astigmatism like soft lenses. This symmetrical front surface of the RGP acts as the primary refracting surface of the eye, correcting astigmatism without the need to control the rotation of the lens.

Another option for correcting astigmatism is a hybrid contact lenses. Hybrid contact lenses have center made of a rigid gas permeable lens material, surrounded by a soft contact lens material. These lenses provide the best of the both worlds. A patient will receive the sharp vision of an RGP and the comfort of wearing a toric soft contact lens.

More and more people are looking into LASIK or other refractive surgeries, a medical procedure that can correct vision. LASIK is an option for people with astigmatism. Remember, astigmatism is a misshaping of the cornea and the lasers used for LASIK procedures can be programed to make the eye more spherical. Even high amounts of astigmatism can be corrected with LASIK, though you may have to receive some follow-up enhancements to fine-tune the correction.

For further answers on how your astigmatism can be corrected ask your local Mabee Eye Care Provider.


Thompson, V. (2018).  Can LASIK fix astigmatism? All About Vision. Retrieved March 4, 2020, from

Heiting, G. (2019).  Contact lenses for astigmatism: Tori, GP and hybrid lenses. All About Vision. Retrieved March 9, 2020, from

Bifocal Contacts for Astigmatism

As we get a little wiser, we start to lose our ability to focus on close objects or reading. This is called presbyopia. Correcting this could be done with a pair of over-the-counter reading glasses, bifocal glasses, or multifocal contact lenses. However, if you have any sort of astigmatism wearing contacts to correct this can be difficult. Your eye doctor might prescribe a monovision solution were you have one contact for near work and one for distance. They may recommend using over-the-counter readers with contacts.

Recently Bausch and Lomb released the Ultra Multifocal for Astigmatism contact lenses. These soft contact lenses have a wide range of lenses for patients with astigmatism and presbyopia. It also allows for people to see. In early 2020, CooperVision released their soft multifocal contact lens for astigmatism in the Biofinity family. Stay tuned as we have more to share about these products.


Heiting, G. (2016). What are bifocal contact lenses for astigmatism? All About Vision. Retrieved March 3, 2020, from

Causes and Types of Astigmatism

Astigmatism, an imperfection in the curvature of the eye, comes from two potential sources: the cornea and/or the lens. With astigmatism, the front surface of the eye(cornea) or the lens, inside the eye, is curved differently in one direction than the other.

There are three main types of astigmatism:

  • Myopic astigmatism – one or both principal meridians of the eye are nearsighted. (light coming into the eye comes to focus in front of the eye)
  • Hyperopic astigmatism – one or both principal meridians of the eye are farsighted. (light coming into the eye comes to focus behind the eye)
  • Mixed astigmatism – one principal meridian is nearsighted, and the other is farsighted. (light coming into the eye comes to focus in front of and behind the eye)

Most frequently, the astigmatism is found on the front surface of the eye. In a few cases, a patient may have astigmatism caused by a distortion of the natural lens inside the eye. This is called lenticular astigmatism.


Heiting, G. (2018) What is astigmatism? All About Vision. Retrieved February 28, 2020, from

What is Astigmatism

Astigmatism is an optical imperfection that prevents the eye from properly focusing light, caused by irregularities in the shape of a person’s cornea. Instead of the cornea have an equally round and symmetrically shape (like a baseball), it is more shaped like a football, with one length being more curved than the other.

Astigmatism can cause images to be blurred or distorted to some degree in the distance and up close.  Some symptoms include eye strain, headaches, squinting, and trouble driving at night. 

If you are worried or concerned about possible astigmatism give the Mabee Eye Clinic a call to set up a comprehensive eye exam.


Heiting, G. (2018) What is astigmatism? All About Vision. Retrieved February 28, 2020, from

Farsightedness and LASIK

More and more people are looking into LASIK or other refractive surgeries, a medical procedure that can correct vision. However, there are certain restrictions for LASIK. What’s more, hyperopic LASIK may be more challenging especially in higher hyperopes. Here’s why…

LASIK works by changing the shape of the clear, domed window on the front of your eye called the cornea. The excimer laser used in LASIK is able to sculpt that cornea with extreme precision without damaging tissue that we don’t want to sculpt. The keyword, however, when we’re describing the difference with hyperopic LASIK isn’t precision; the keyword is sculpt.

The laser can’t change the shape of the cornea by adding anything to the shape. It can only sculpt — that is subtract — to make the shape into what you’d need to have clear vision. With myopic LASIK, that’s easy to describe: the cornea is too steep to see clearly so it is made flatter. That’s a situation set up perfectly for subtraction.

With hyperopic LASIK, we’ve got the opposite issue. The cornea is too flat to see clearly and must be made steeper. But we can’t add to the cornea. How would we make it steeper? The answer is in sculpting down the sides of the cornea to make everything steeper. As hyperopic prescriptions get higher (usually around +2.00 or above) the amount of sculpting in the periphery necessary becomes problematic.

With the imaging diagnostics available today, and our understanding of how corneal topography influences vision, we can make the right choice ahead of time. We don’t have to go into LASIK wondering how it will turn out. That’s great news because having eyes that see clearly without glasses is amazing, but having eyes that are able to see clearly with or without glasses is even more important.


Boxer Wachler, B.S. (2019).  9 criteria for a good LASIK candidate. All About Vision. Retrieved February 7, 2020, from

Joel Hunter, MD (2019).  LASIK for farsightedness: Can it help my vision. Hunter Vision. Retrieved March 14, 2020,

Correction for Hyperopia

Farsightedness or hyperopia can be corrected by glasses or contact lenses. When selecting glasses for farsightedness it is important to think about selecting a high-index material, an aspheric lens, and an anti-reflective coating.

High-index lenses are able to bend light, or refract, more efficiently than conventional plastic material lenses. Patients with higher prescriptions benefit from high-index lenses the most, because it requires less lens material resulting in thinner edges and reduces the overall weight of the lenses.

An aspheric lens is made with flatter curves than a regular lens, giving it a slimmer and more attractive profile. With a much flatter curve there is less bulging of the lens from the frame and helps reduce some of the magnification effect that give patients a “bug-eyed” look.

Glasses with aspheric high-index lenses reflect more light than standard lenses. Applying an anti-reflective coating can eliminate distracting lens reflections.

Your eye doctor or optician is the best person to advise you in the selection of lens materials or design before buying a new set of frames and lenses. 


Bailey, G. & Thompson, V. (2017). Hyperopia (farsightedness): How to correct for it. All About Vision. Retrieved February 5, 2020, from

Bruneni, J.L. & Heiting, G. (2017). High-index lenses: thinner, lighter lenses for any eyeglass prescription. All About Vision. Retrieved February 10, 2020, from

Heiting, G. (2017). Aspheric lenses for better vision and appearance. All About Vision. Retrieved February 10, 2020, from

Myopia vs. Hyperopia?

The two most common types of vision correction are nearsightedness and farsightedness. These are referred to as refractive error, or irregularities in the eye’s anatomy that affect its ability to focus light on the retina. Both refractive errors share common symptoms including headaches, eye strain, squinting to see clearly, and eye fatigue. However, the cause error is different between the two.

Myopia, or nearsightedness, happens when light entering the eye focuses in front of the retina, usually because the eyeball has grown too long. This makes distant objects appear blurry, but anything close-up is not affected.

Hyperopia, or farsightedness, happens when light entering the eye focuses behind the retina, usually because the eyeball is too short. This makes close objects appear to blurry, but distant vision is not affected. Mild cases of hyperopia might not affect vision at all but cause headaches when doing close-up work.


Duff, B.L. & Heiting, G. (2019). What’s the difference between nearsightedness and farsightedness? All About Vision. Retrieved February 7, 2020, from

What is Hyperopia?

Hyperopia affects about a fourth of the population. A person with hyperopia can typically see distant objects very well, but have trouble seeing objects up close. Hyperopia is also referred to as farsightedness.

Farsightedness is caused by light rays focusing behind the retina instead of directly on it. This means the eye ball is shorter than normal. Many children are born farsighted and as they grow their eye lengthens and they become less hyperopic.

A plus powered lens is needed to correct farsighted. The plus is there because your eye needs to have some focusing power added to it to have clear vision. It’s the reason farsightedness can sometimes take years to cause any trouble with the vision. The natural lens inside your eye has a built-in autofocus that happens to specialize in one thing: adding focusing power. That feature is there for one main purpose, which is to allow clear near vision.

With farsighted eyes, there’s not enough focusing power to see a clear image anywhere, near or far. But that autofocusing lens inside the eye comes to the rescue because it can add the missing power. Who cares if that’s supposed to be reserved for reading? “I’ll give my power to help you focus wherever you need,” is how the lens responds to the need of the farsighted human. That said, if there is too much plus power needed for the eye to autofocus, glasses will be needed. This is the most common reason young people with farsightedness get glasses.

But there comes a day when the lens is older, stiffened from the passing years, and it has no more power to give. In those final days, with a bit of straining (usually patients over the age of 40), it gives its last bit of focusing power to let you see. A pair of glasses will need to add that power for you from now on. That first pair of glasses has a plus sign in front of the prescription, representing the focusing power they will add.

Bailey, G. & Thompson, V. (2017). Hyperopia (farsightedness): How to correct for it. All About Vision. Retrieved February 5, 2020, from

Myopia Control

Myopia is no doubt a significant public health issue and continue to be on the rise, especially in various parts of the world, such as East Asia. While myopia is most frequently associated with blurred distance vision, it is associated with more significant ocular comorbidities. Each of these can have substantial and permanent loss of vision, and although comorbidities are more common in high myopia, most agree in general that there are no safe levels of myopia.

While myopia development is multifactorial in nature, numerous studies have enabled eye care professionals to develop approaches to slow the progression of myopia. Myopia control can keep children from developing high levels of nearsightedness that require thick, corrective eyeglasses and other serious eye problems later in life.

Fortunately, today these exists options to control onto how nearsighted one’s child may become.

  • Atropine 0.01% eye drops are used to dilate the pupil and temporarily paralyze the eye’s ability to automatically change focus. The drop is utilized every morning by a child, and research shows this method can effectively slow myopic progression by 50%. One’s child would still wear their normal glasses with this type of treatment.
  • Multifocal soft contact lenses are specially designed lenses with different powers in different zones of the lens to help control myopia. Research shows about a 30% reduction in the rate of myopia progression for children using these lenses.

In March, CooperVision launched a new line of contact lenses called MiSight. It is a daily disposable lens that corrects a person’s distance vision, but also induces peripheral myopic defocus. MiSight was studied in a 3-year clinical trial of 135 children ages 8 to 12. CooperVision’s patented ActivControl Technology slows the elongation of the eye and the progression of myopia, while fully correcting refractive error.

  • Orthokeratology is another option of slowing the progression of myopia by using gas permeable lenses. Patients would wear these lenses while sleeping at night to temporarily reshape the cornea. This temporarily corrects vision so glasses or contact lenses are not required during waking hours. Studies have shown that children who wore ortho-k lenses show slower progression and eventually less myopia than patients with glasses or regular contact lenses.  In fact, studies show a decrease in the progression of nearsightedness by 60% to 100%.

Ask your Mabee Eye Clinic provider about these options!


Heiting, G. (2018). Myopia control: is there a cure for nearsightedness? All About Vision. Retrieved January 27, 2020, from

Heiting, G. (2019). Ortho-K and corneal refractive therapy: overnight contacts to correct myopia. All About Vision. Retrieved January 28, 2020, from

Garlich, J. (2019, November 23).  MiSight and Scout-two very different new contacts [Blog post]. Retrieved from

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