Skip to main content
Home »

eye doctor

Are Contact Lenses Safe For Young Children?

Here’s a question we often get at our practice: ‘Is my child too young for contact lenses?’ This is an important question, and the answer may surprise you. 

For children with myopia (nearsightedness), contact lenses can be a convenient method of vision correction. It allows kids to go about their day without having to worry about breaking or misplacing their glasses, and enables them to freely participate in sports and other physical activities. 

Some children and young teens may ask their parents for contact lenses because they feel self-conscious wearing glasses. Contact lenses may even provide children with the confidence boost they need to come out of their shell. Moreover, these days, it is very popular for children to wear single-use one-day disposable soft contacts, since there is no cleaning or maintenance involved. 

Some parents may deny their child’s request for contacts due to concerns about eye health and safety. There’s no reason to worry: contact lenses are just as safe for children as they are for anyone else. 

At Bluebird Family Eye Care, we provide children, teens, and patients of all ages with a wide variety of contact lenses. If you’re concerned about the safety of contacts for your child, we’ll be happy to explain and explore ways to ensure maximum safety, optimal eye health and comfort. To learn more or to schedule a pediatric eye exam for contact lenses, contact us today. 

What Are the Risks of Having My Child Wear Contact Lenses?

A study published in the January 2021 issue of The Journal of Ophthalmic & Physiological Optics found that kids aren’t at a higher risk of experiencing contact lens complications. 

The study followed nearly 1000 children aged 8-16 over the course of 1.5-3 years to determine how contact lenses affected their eye health. 

The results indicate that age doesn’t have an effect on contact lens safety. In fact, the researchers found that the risk of developing infections or other adverse reactions was less than 1% per year of wear — which is comparable to contact lens wearers of other ages.

But before you decide that contact lenses are right for your child, you may want to consider whether your child is ready to wear them. During his or her eye doctor’s appointment, the optometrist may ask about your child’s level of maturity, responsibility, and personal hygiene. Since many children are highly motivated to wear contacts, they tend to display real maturity in caring for their lenses. That said, in the initial stages, parents may need to play an active role, as their child gets used to inserting and removing the new contact lenses.  

It’s important to note that just as with any other medical device, contact lenses are not risk-free. Anyone who wears contact lenses has a chance of developing eye infections or other complications with contact lenses. However, when worn and cared for according to your eye doctor’s instructions, contact lenses are low-risk and perfectly safe for children and teenagers.

So, go ahead and bring your child in for a contact lens consultation! We’ll help determine if your child is ready for contacts and answer any questions you or your child may have. To schedule your child’s contact lens fitting or eye exam, contact Bluebird Family Eye Care in Blackfoot today.  

Help! My Child Doesn’t Want to Wear Glasses!

Do your kids need glasses in order to see clearly? Maybe they have a strong case of nearsightedness, perhaps they have astigmatism, or another type of refractive error. Whatever the cause, getting your kids to wear eyeglasses can be a parenting challenge.

Dr. Jones treats patients from all over Blackfoot, Idaho with their vision correction needs. The knowledgeable, caring staff at Bluebird Family Eye Care can help you and your kids if they’re struggling with their glasses or don’t want to wear them.

Why Won’t My Child Wear His or Her Glasses?

To help your children get the best vision possible, you first need to understand why they’re fighting with you over their glasses. It usually stems from something physical, emotional, or social, such as:

  • Wrong fit
  • Wrong prescription
  • Personal style
  • Reactions from friends

How do you know which it is? Pay close attention to the signs, from what your kids say, to how they behave, to how they interact with others.

Physical

Improper fit is a big reason why glasses could feel uncomfortable. If they slip down, itch behind the ears, or put pressure on the bridge of the nose, it can explain why a child wouldn’t like to wear them.

If there’s been a big change to their prescription, they may need time to get used to it. If they were given the wrong prescription, they may be straining their eyes, getting headaches, or having eye fatigue. An incorrect prescription can make wearing glasses painful or awkward. It doesn’t correct their vision, either, so they’ll still see blurry images. When this happens, your eye doctor can check the prescription and make an adjustment.

Emotional

Your kids at home aren’t the same as your kids in school, on the sports field, or with their friends. They may be afraid of being made fun of in school, or they may not want the sudden attention on their appearance. These feelings can be even stronger among the tween and teen set.

Social

Even young kids can feel different when they put on a pair of glasses, especially if it’s for the first time. Feeling different or weird, in their eyes, translates to a negative experience. When wearing glasses makes them feel like the odd man out, they may not want to wear them. The last thing your child wants is to feel like a social outcast. After all, everyone wants to belong.

How We Can Help

First, bring your child in to the eye doctor for an eye exam. Our optometrist, Dr. Jones, will check to make sure that your child has the right prescription and that any vision problems are being corrected. Next, we’ll take a look at the glasses and place them on your child’s face to determine if they’ve got the proper fit. Our optician will take care of any adjustments that need to be made.

The Vision They Need, The Style They Want

Fashion isn’t only for adults. Your budding fashionista or trendy young stud wants to look awesome, so don’t forget about style. When your kids look great, they’ll feel great! Give them the top-quality eyewear they need without compromising on style. Your kids are a lot more likely to wear glasses when they like the way they look.

What You Can Do to Help

Encourage, stay positive, and don’t give up. Avoid telling them what you want them to wear. Let them choose for themselves. In the end, they’re the ones wearing the glasses. Making decisions is an important life skill, something they’ll need as they grow up and become more independent.

For younger children, use positive words to encourage them. Talk about how glasses are like magic, letting them see beautiful things around them. Show them how a pretty flower or a bright red truck looks with the glasses on, and how different it looks with the glasses off. For older kids, throw in a little pop culture. Tell them how trendy they’ll look by showing them pictures of celebrities who also wear glasses. You’ll also rack up some cool parent points.

At Bluebird Family Eye Care, we have the experience and unique approach to children’s eyewear that will make your kids want to wear their glasses. Schedule an eye exam today – you can book an appointment online right here. If you have any questions or concerns, give us a call and we’ll be glad to help.

Ocean Pacific

op eyeglassesSince 1972, OP has reigned as the original California lifestyle brand, the first to successfully translate the surfing lifestyle into a fashion statement. OP is the definitive name of the surfing beach culture, defining it with fun, colorful and youthful fashion and accessories.

Ocean Pacific eyewear is bright and fun, offering a variety of frames for the entire family. Offering fully rimmed, semi-rimless and rimless frame designs in a youthful selection of shapes in colorful plastics and metals. Casual, comfortable and sunshine-ready, OP eyewear fuses fashion, sports, music and art with beach culture, inspired by the waves.

Digital Eye Strain

Understanding Digital Eye Strain Could Prolong Your Eye Health

Did you know that straining your eyes can increase your chance of encountering eye problems down the road? In this digital age, more of us are experiencing eye strain than ever. So many in fact, that this kind of strain has been given its own name: digital eye strain.

By understanding digital eye strain and what causes it, you can take steps to protect your eyes, and in doing so, preserve your eyesight.

Why is Digital Eye Strain Such a New Issue?

The simple answer to this is that digital technology is new. The more complicated answer is that it’s an evolutionary issue.

The human body is designed to adapt to its environment as it changes around them. Historically, big environmental changes happen slowly over a matter of decades or even centuries. But in the case of this new digital environment of ours, the change has been rapid. Think about it: the technology we use on a daily basis is already so different from what we were using 10 years ago.

As the technology has changed, we’ve become more and more dependent on it. We’re now spending more time staring at a single space than any population of humans in history. Because this change has been so fast, the human body hasn’t had a chance to catch up; our eyes aren’t designed to stare at a screen for eight or more hours a day. As a result, they begin to grow tired.

The Additional Strain of Blue Light

A contributing factor to digital eye strain is what’s called blue light; a specific wavelength of ultraviolet light. Most phones, monitors, laptops and tablets emit blue light from their displays.

Blue light is a very scattered wavelength of light, meaning your eyes have to work extra hard to focus and make sense of it. This is part of what makes four hours of screen time harder on your eyes than 4 hours of reading a book.

Symptoms

Digital eye strain affects more than just your eyes. Yes, patients usually experience dry eyes, gritty feeling eyes, a headache, or the sensation that they just can’t keep their eyes open; but it’s also common to notice back pain, neck pain, and even just trouble staying on task.

Mitigating Digital Eye Strain

Computer Glasses

One way to save your eyes from daily strain is to invest in computer glasses. Special lenses filter out some blue light, allowing your eyes to focus with less effort.

Office Ergonomics

Optimizing your workspace will go a long way to preventing digital eye strain. Your computer should be roughly an arm’s length away from your face; the top of your screen should be just below eye level. Position your monitor so there is no glare obstructing your view. These small adjustments could make a huge impact in your comfort and productivity throughout the day.

Use the 20/20/20 Rule

Every 20 minutes, take a break from what you’re doing. Find an object that about 20 feet away from you, and stare at it for 20 seconds. By giving your eyes a chance to focus on something else, you’re letting your eye muscles take a quick break before going back to work. Think of it as getting up to stretch your legs after sitting down for a while.

Eye Nutrition

A Balanced Diet Feeds Your Eyesight

We mostly associate the need for nutrition with body fat and muscle, but we often forget that when we eat, we’re not just fueling our muscles; we’re fueling every part of our bodies. And just like every other system in the body, the eyes require certain nutrients to work properly. Moreover, the right diet can actually help your eyes work better.

Proper Nutrition Can Reduce Your Risk of Eye Diseases

Dry Eye

Dry eye is a common issue among Americans causing irritation, discomfort, and possibly even damage to the cornea. Omega-3 fatty acids and vitamin A can help alleviate the symptoms of dry eye naturally. Cold water fish like salmon are a great source of omega-3 fatty acids. You’ll find vitamin A in eggs, butter, and milk.

Cataracts

Most people over the age of 60 have experienced some level of cataract development; blurring their vision and dulling colors. Vitamin C and bioflavonoids can help reduce the risk of cataract development. You can get your daily dose of vitamin C from kale, strawberries, oranges, and broccoli. Red wine, soy products, blueberries, and cherries are an excellent way to get bioflavonoids into your diet.

Glaucoma

When intraocular pressure builds over time, it damages the optic nerve. This serious disease is called glaucoma. There’s some evidence that vitamin C can help with glaucoma prevention. Green and red peppers, cantaloupe, and kale are excellent sources of vitamin C.

Age-Related Macular Degeneration

When blood or deposits of drusen cover the macula, it obscures the patient’s central vision. A number of nutrients are said to help prevent or delay age-related macular degeneration, including vitamin D (found in salmon, milk, and sardines), zinc (found in oysters and beef), vitamin E (found in sunflower seeds and almonds), and selenium (found in seafood, Brazil nuts, and brown rice.) Carotenoids such as lutein and zeaxanthin (found in leafy green vegetables, broccoli and zucchini) have also been shown to help in the prevention of AMD.

Supplementing Your Diet

Eating a balanced diet can be tricky, especially when you’re busy with work, kids, and a social life. But that doesn’t mean you should let proper nutrition and eye health fall by the wayside. Learn more about laser eye surgery consultation.

There are a number of specially formulated health supplements designed to benefit eye health. Ask your doctor to recommend or prescribe the best eye supplements for you.

Myopia Control

Serving Blackfoot & Idaho Falls, ID

eye5

How Myopia Works

Myopia or nearsightedness is what’s called a refractive error. In an error-free eye, light focuses directly on the retina, causing a crisp, clear vision. But when the eyeball grows too long for the relative curve of the cornea, it causes light to focus on a point just in front of the retina. Because light isn’t focusing on the right spot, your eyes can’t get a clear picture of objects that are further away.

eye-pink-eye

The Science of Myopia Control

With the exception of laser eye surgery, there isn’t really a cure for myopia; myopia control doesn’t get rid of the refractive error.

Instead, myopia control keeps the condition from getting worse. Controlling myopia means your child won’t have to rely on as strong of a prescription as they might otherwise; giving them a little more freedom by preserving some of the acuity they already have.

Part of controlling myopia is reducing eye strain. Research suggests that straining the eyes or forcing the eye muscles to work extra hard can contribute to the progression of myopia. Different methods of myopia control focus on keeping the eye from straining at any distance; be it close-up or far away.

myopia-control

Myopia is on the Rise in American Kids

Myopia isn’t just getting more and more common; it’s affecting kids at a younger and younger age. Though scientists can’t pinpoint exactly what’s causing the trend, there’s data to indicate that spending less time outside and more time staring at screens could have something to do with it. As kids get older, their eyes grow with them. This can make their myopia worse; exacerbating the ratio of the length of the eyeball to the curve of the cornea. Myopia control can help keep your child’s vision from getting significantly worse as they grow up.

person-female

Is Myopia Control an Option for Adults?

Most of us would love the chance to keep our eyesight from changing down the line, so it’s not unreasonable to hope that we grown-ups can benefit from myopia control too.

Unfortunately, there isn’t a lot of evidence to suggest that it’s particularly effective for adults. As a result, doctors mostly focus on how myopia control affects children, as they get the best results.

Methods of Myopia Control

There are a few different options in terms of myopia control, each with its own merits and benefits. When we talk about myopia control with you and your child, we’ll take the time to explain all your options. It’s important to us that both you and your child are comfortable with and confident in the method of myopia control we choose to pursue. We’re happy to talk about it with you for as long as you need us to.

Treatment for Myopia

emergency-cross emergency-cross Orthokeratology Lenses

Orthokeratology (or ortho-k) uses contact lenses to temporarily change the structure of the eye. Your child will put their rigid gas permeable ortho-k contact lenses in every night before they go to bed. As they sleep, this gentle vision shaping system delicately reshapes the cornea. Learn more about eye care services.

In the morning, your child will remove the lenses, and enjoy clear vision without glasses for the rest of the day. Throughout the day, your child’s cornea will slowly go back to its natural shape, meaning the treatment is totally reversible and won’t hinder any future treatments.

emergency-cross emergency-cross Atropine Drops

Because eye strain tends to make myopia worse, atropine aims to reduce instances of eye strain. These drops relax and paralyze the focusing muscles around the eye, keeping your eyes from working too hard while they try to focus. Atropine drops have been used for years and are one of the oldest methods of myopia control available.

emergency-cross emergency-cross Multifocal Contact Lenses

Much like multifocal glasses, multifocal contacts are designed with different levels of magnification in different areas of the lens. These lenses are effective as a means of myopia control because they allow a child to see clearly at all distances rather than magnifying distant objects while simultaneously making close objects more difficult to see. This goes a long way towards eliminating strain which contributes to the progression of myopia.

Eye Drops & Supplements

Discover Our Eye Drops and Eye Health Supplements

At Bluebird Family Eye Care, we don’t just offer excellent service and compassionate care. We also carry a range of products to help you maintain your eye health at home. Visit us to browse our selection of eye health products today.

Bluebird Family Eye Care Has Your Dry Eye Solution!

Dry eye is not an eye emergency, but a common eye problem, leaving patients uncomfortable and frustrated. We have an excellent selection of products to help you combat dry eye and relieve your symptoms. Schedule an appointment, and we’ll help you find the right treatment option for you.

Dry Eye Relief For Women

Research indicates that women (particularly women over 40) are more likely to experience dry eye than men. Because this issue is so common among women, we offer dry eye relief that is formulated specifically for women.

Natural Ophthalmics’ Women’s Tear Stimulation eye drops contain the two ingredients most commonly prescribed for women experiencing dry eye due to hormonal fluctuation. These eye drops were created to stimulate production of three different tear film layers to protect the conjunctiva, the cornea, and the eyelid.

Nighttime Dry Eye Relief

Waking up is never fun, but it can be a particularly unpleasant experience when your eyes feel immediately dry and irritated. Our nighttime dry eye solutions are an excellent way to keep your eyes hydrated while you sleep so you can wake up feeling comfortable and ready to face the day.

Hydrating sleep masks and eye shields cover your eyes while you sleep. The coverage protects your eyes from potentially drying drafts while also sealing in moisture. These solutions are a great option for travelers and patients with sleep apnea.

Moist Heat Therapy

Research shows that, when applied properly, a specific level of moisture and heat can both alleviate dry eye symptoms, and help stimulate proper tear production. Tranquileyes goggles help you find the perfect parameters to use moisture and heat. Plus, these goggles are portable and easy to use.

Supplement Your Eye Health

Nutrition can be instrumental in maintaining good eye health, but sometimes it’s hard to keep track of all the nutrients you need. Our eye health supplements are a great way to make sure your eyes are getting the fuel they need to stay healthy and do their best work.

Eyeglasses

Our staff will help you find the best fit for your specific needs and explain how different lenses and frames will impact your vision.

Proudly serving Idaho’s Bingham County, Butte County, and Bonneville County areas for more than 10 years.

Your glasses say a lot about you. Are you fun and laid back? Bold and decisive? Classic and demure?

Whoever you are, we have quality frames from renowned designers to bring out your personality. Brands like Kate Spade, Nike and Guess are sure to augment your style and get you noticed.

Don’t know what you want? Our staff is happy to help you decide what frames work best for you based on your coloring and face shape. Visit us today, and let us add a little extra personality to your personal style.

Trust Our Wow Guarantee

For 12 months after your purchase, we’ll replace or fix your glasses for only a 25 dollar co-payment. It doesn’t matter what happened to them; whether you sat on them, or your dog chewed them to pieces.

Our Wow Guarantee is unconditional. When you purchase from Bluebird Family Eye Care, you’re investing in more than just premium eyewear; you’re investing in peace of mind.

Repairs and Adjustments

Our Wow Guarantee also entitles you to free adjustments, nose pad replacements, screw tightening and replacement, and basic frame alignment and care for the lifetime of the glasses.

Here are our Optician's Top Frame picks!

Making a decision about your eyewear goes beyond good vision and makes a statement about who you are. Your decision affects how you see and also how you want to be seen by others. But with so many different styles to choose from, getting the right look for your face and your lifestyle can be overwhelming.

In our Optical boutique we carry many top designer eyewear brands and we love each line for many reasons. All the same, certain brands have proven to be standout winners with both our customers and our staff and we’d like to share them with you.

Transitions Lenses in Blackfoot, ID

Your decision affects how you see and also how you want to be seen by others. You need the right look!

Designer Frames in Blackfoot, ID

We carry a large variety of top designer frames for both eyeglasses and sunglasses.

Eyeglass Basics in Blackfoot, ID

Eyeglasses are more popular today than ever, despite the availability of contact lenses and vision correction surgery.

Sunglasses in Blackfoot, ID

Whether or not you require vision correction, sunglasses can add an element of comfort and enhanced performance.

Prescription Eyeglasses in Blackfoot, ID

Get tips on caring for your lenses, frames and learn about the benefits of bifocals, progressives, and high index lenses.

Lens Treatments in Blackfoot, ID

Today’s eyeglass lens treatments make a real difference in what you see, and what you don’t see.

Sports, Safety & Specialty Eyewear in Blackfoot, ID

We’ll happily fit your protective eyewear with prescription safety lenses.

Transitions Lenses in Blackfoot, ID

Transitions® Lenses are the #1 brand of photochromic lenses recommended by eye care professionals worldwide.

Kid's Optical In Blackfoot, ID

Help your child choose eyewear that suits their lifestyle. The right frame and lens will help them in school, work and at play.

EyeGlass Guide In Blackfoot, ID

Visit our interactive on-line tool and we'll guide you through a series of questions about you.

Eye Condition Treatment

Happy Parents with Child, do they need eye condition treatment?

Eye problems can range from mild to severe; some are chronic, while others may resolve on their own, never to appear again. The articles below will give you a basic understanding of some of these problems and their implications. The cardinal rule is if your eyes don't look good, feel good or see well, you should visit your doctor.

The following is a short list of common eye conditions we treat, such as astigmatism, dry eye syndrome and presbyopia. For information about cataracts, glaucoma, macular degeneration and diabetic retinopathy please see Eye Disease Management. A more comprehensive list of eye conditions can be found in our Eye Health Library.

Please book an appointment with our Blackfoot eye doctor if you have any concerns.