Best eye doctor near me in Charlotte, NC.

Our real, quality doctors can help diagnose and treat eye conditions for a clear, affordable price. No copays, no insurance networks, no hidden fees.
Book an eye exam with a licensed optometrist in Charlotte, NC for an affordable, cash price - all from the comfort of home.
95% patient satisfaction
$13,000,000+ saved by patients
4.3 on
Trustpilot logo
Named Best Overall Telehealth byHealthline logo
As someone without insurance, Sesame was really great. – Dominic
1 provider available

Video vision assessment

Video vision exam for vision assessment and prescription glasses or contact lens renewal.
  • 0.0
    (12)
    Optometry
    • Available today
    The following inclusions and exclusions apply:
    • Prescription for contact lenses
    • Prescription for eyeglasses
    • Eyeglasses or contact lenses
FAQs

Vision

What should I do if I am having vision problems?

If you are having serious vision problems or vision loss, see a doctor right away. Vision loss can be caused by an injury or by more serious conditions, like a stroke. If you are experiencing a severe, acute vision problem, call 911 immediately.

For non-emergency eye care, you can connect today with a licensed doctor on Sesame for a video eye exam. Our real, quality doctors can help diagnose and treat eye conditions for a clear, affordable price. No copays, no insurance networks, no hidden fees. It's really that simple.

Can you do an eye exam online?

Yep! Virtual eye exams are becoming more and more common. You can speak with a doctor over secure video chat to get your questions answered and symptoms addressed.

On Sesame, you can book an eye exam with a licensed optometrist in Charlotte, NC for an affordable, cash price - all from the comfort of home.

What happens at an eye exam?

Eye doctors perform eye exams to help assess the health of your eye and screen for eye conditions. Eye doctors usually conduct two main types of eye exams: routine eye exams and comprehensive eye exams.

Routine eye exams:

Routine eye exams are performed annually or every other year. Routine eye exams are meant to check for vision problems and assess your eyesight. Your eye doctor will ask about your medical history, family history (relating to eye conditions), and any eye problems you may be experiencing. The doctor will perform tests to assess general eye health and check for astigmatism, nearsightedness (myopia), or farsightedness (hyperopia)/ age-related farsightedness (presbyopia). During a routine eye exam, your doctor will determine whether you may need eyeglasses and contact lenses and develop a prescription that works for you. Some tests performed during a routine eye exam include:

- Visual acuity tests: Tests that determine how well you see the details of a letter or figure at different distances.

- Visual field test: This test helps doctors determine where the limit of sight is in the corner of your eye.

- Refraction tests: To determine whether you may need glasses or contact lenses, eye doctors will use a phoropter to test the refractive error of each eye. A phoropter is a medical device that looks like a large pair of goggles. The eye doctor will ask you to look through the phoropter at a series of letters or images and will adjust the phoropter's lenses until arriving at a prescription that works for you.

- Eye movement tests: These simple tests can often be performed by tracking the eye's movement as it follows an object in the line of sight. This helps doctors check the strength of your ocular muscles.

Comprehensive eye exams:

An eye doctor will perform a comprehensive eye exam to assess eye health and visual acuity and screen for eye conditions and diseases. The eye doctor will run a routine eye exam alongside more specific tests tailored to your vision and eye needs. These are usually longer eye exams that are used to check for signs of eye disease or serious eye problems. Tests that may be performed during a comprehensive eye exam include:

- Tonometry: Tonometry is a test that helps check for glaucoma by measuring eye pressure - the pressure of fluid in the eye.

- Slit-lamp tests: Slit-lamp (or biomicroscope) tests check for abnormalities in the cornea, iris, and lens of the eye. The doctor will use a special type of light (slit-lamp) and a low-powered microscope to look at the surface of your eye. This painless examination can help catch macular degeneration, detached retinas, and cataracts.

Eye exams play a key role in eye health and general healthcare. Not only do eye exams help doctors assess your quality of vision, but they also help determine whether you need eyeglasses or other forms of eye care. Comprehensive eye exams are crucial for catching serious eye conditions.

What is a dilated eye exam?

Dilation is usually the last part of an annual eye check-up (don't worry, it's painless) and is the best way for eye doctors to check for early warning signs of eye diseases.

Usually, your eye doctor will give you an eye drop that will dilate, or widen, your pupil. Your doctor can then examine the inner parts of your eye. Dilation allows eye doctors to catch eye diseases before they begin to cause serious symptoms and develop a treatment plan that's right for you!

Why are eye exams necessary?

Routine eye exams help eye doctors determine whether you need eyeglasses or prescription eye care. If you currently have eyeglasses or use contact lenses, routine eye exams also help determine the prescription that is right for you.

Comprehensive eye exams help eye doctors screen for eye disease and eye conditions such as:
- Glaucoma
- Macular degeneration
- Strabismus
- Corneal damage/ abrasions
- Detached retinas/ retinal damage
- Optic nerve damage
- Color blindness


Based on your medical history and eye health, it is generally recommended that adults receive a comprehensive eye exam every two years to screen for serious eye health problems and eye disease.

How often should I get an eye exam?

The frequency of your eye exams should depend on your age as well as your personal and family medical history. The American Optometric Association (AOA) has developed recommendations outlining how often you should receive a comprehensive eye exam based on your age and personal risk of eye problems.

The AOA recommends that babies receive at least one comprehensive eye exam between birth and the age of 2, and at least one eye exam between the ages of 3-5. Then, the AOA suggests that children receive at least one more eye exam before first grade. After that, at-risk adolescents and adults should receive annual eye exams to help screen for eye disease and vision problems.

If you are low-risk or do not have vision problems, it is recommended that you get an eye exam every two years.

You should receive more regular eye exams if you have:

- A family history of eye problems and vision loss
- Preexisting health problems that affect your eyes (such as diabetes)
- Use and need prescription eye care (such as contact lenses, eyeglasses, or other eyewear)

Is an eye exam painful?

Nope! Eye exams are almost always easy and painless. Most eye exams begin with your doctor asking you questions about any symptoms you have been having, your medical history, and your current medications.

Then, the doctor will test your visual acuity and visual field to see if you may need eyeglasses or contact lenses. Similar to the at-home vision tests, the doctor will ask you to identify letters listed on a chart approximately 10 feet away to assess your vision in each eye. If necessary, your eye doctor may conduct a refraction assessment. Refractors (those giant, metal goggles often associated with the eye doctor's office) correct errors in your vision, like astigmatism, by properly focusing light on your cornea, the back part of your eye. Eye doctors use refraction assessments to discover your lens prescription and fit you for glasses.

Your doctor may use a slit lamp, a tool that helps examine the inner structures of your eye, like your retina. They can also treat any physical symptoms you might be experiencing, like a stye - a painful bump near the outside of the eyelid.

Most eye doctors will also measure your eye pressure to detect the presence of glaucoma. For this, doctors use a tool called tonometry, which uses a quick puff of air to measure your eye pressure. But don't worry! Most doctors will give you a numbing eyedrop before tonometry--making the process completely painless!

Connect with a licensed optometrist on Sesame today, who can assess your symptoms and schedule a follow-up appointment - all for one transparent cash price.

What do you need for an eye exam?

Just yourself (and some information about your medical history).

During your video consult, your doctor will ask you questions about your current symptoms and medical history. They may ask you to re-position your webcam to better evaluate any symptoms you are having. Come prepared to ask questions and get to the bottom of your symptoms.

When should your child have their first eye exam?

The American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO) recommends that children get their first eye exam by the age of six months. Parents should make sure their children receive another exam by the time they turn two. After that, it is recommended that children see an eye doctor every two years.

Eye exams are part of the many tests that doctors perform on babies in the hours after they're born. If your baby is born prematurely or shows signs of eye disease, additional testing may be required.

Eye exams for children are usually performed by a pediatric doctor but can be done by an eye doctor, depending on your child's health history.

How expensive is an eye exam without insurance?

Without insurance, eye exams can cost anywhere from $90-$200. This covers the doctor's fee as well as the cost of any tests that may be performed.

On Sesame, you can connect with real, quality doctors for video eye exams starting at just $33. Eye exams are critical in screening for vision loss and help you and your eye doctors stay one step ahead of chronic vision problems. Sesame works directly with eye doctors licensed to treat patients in Charlotte, NC. On Sesame, the price you see is the price you pay - no hidden fees or surprise bills. Just simple, easy eye care.

Eye doctors on Sesame are also qualified to perform comprehensive eye exams, which start at ${{ LowestPrice }}. Save 60% when you book your next eye care appointment with Sesame.

How can I check my eyesight at home?

It is recommended that you see an eye doctor for your vision and eye care needs. But, there are some ways to test your vision at home. The easiest method, for example, is to set up an at-home eye test. You can do this by printing out an eyesight chart from the internet and taping it to a blank wall. Stand ten feet back from the chart and have a family member quiz you on the letters listed in the chart.

While this at-home eye test can be a fun way to test your visual acuity, you should see a licensed eye doctor for a comprehensive eye exam. Connect directly with optometrists and ophthalmologist on Sesame. Eye doctors on Sesame are available to speak today!

Should I see an optometrist or an ophthalmologist?

Great question! Optometrists and ophthalmologists are both eye doctors who diagnose and treat a wide range of eye conditions and diseases.

Not sure which Doctor is right for your needs? It can be a tricky question - but we've got your back. Here's how they differ:

  • Ophthalmology: Ophthalmologists are licensed medical school graduates (MDs) who are specialists in eye and vision care. They treat vision problems and eye disease by offering diagnostic eye testing, eyeglasses, contact lenses, medications, and both minor and major eye surgery.

  • Optometry: Doctors of Optometry are licensed optometry school graduates (OD's) who are specialists in eye and vision care. They treat vision problems and eye disease by offering diagnostic eye testing, eyeglasses, contact lenses, medications, and minor eye surgery. Optometrists do not perform major eye surgery, but coordinate with ophthalmologists to obtain these treatments for their patients.

What diseases does an ophthalmologist treat?

Ophthalmologists are medical doctors who specialize in treating a wide range of eye conditions. Ophthalmologists provide comprehensive eye exams to screen for eye disease. Some common conditions that ophthalmologists can treat include:
- Persistent dry eye syndrome
- Glaucoma
- Strabismus (Crossed eyes)
- Eye infections
- Astigmatism
- Macular Degeneration
- Diabetic retinopathy
- Presbyopia (age-related farsightedness)
- Conjunctivitis


To treat these diseases, ophthalmologists may prescribe eye medication or perform eye surgery. Common procedures performed by a specialized eye surgeon include:
- Refractive surgery (such as LASIK)
- Cataract surgery
- Cornea surgery
- Vitrectomy (retina surgery)


Before you book appointments with an ophthalmologist, check to make sure that they are certified by the American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO). This ensures that your eye surgeon has received intensive training and is licensed at the highest possible level.

Don't wait to get screened for eye diseases and vision problems. Early detection helps reduce issues later on. Connect on Sesame with a licensed ophthalmologist in Charlotte, NC to get the care you need for one affordable, upfront price - no copays or hidden fees. Seeing a doctor for your yearly wellness and prevention check-up can save many other medical issues from arising. Save up to 60% when you book your next comprehensive eye exam through Sesame.

What is nearsightedness (myopia)?

Myopia (nearsightedness) is an eye condition in which you can see close objects but have trouble focusing on objects far away from you. Nearsightedness occurs when the curvature of the eye causes a refractive error, bending light rays improperly. This focuses visual images on the front of the retina, instead of on the retina itself, causing blurry vision.

Nearsightedness is usually genetic. But don't worry! Myopia is not an eye disease and is easily treated with corrective lenses or refractive surgery. Myopia can occur at birth, develop over time, or appear suddenly.

Farsightedness, also called hyperopia, is the opposite. It occurs when the cornea has too little curve, causing nearby objects to appear blurry while leaving far-off objects focused and sharp.

What causes nearsightedness?

Nearsightedness is an inherited trait that parents often pass on to their kids. Genetics is the most significant cause of nearsightedness.

Nearsightedness occurs when the corneal surface is too steep (think of an overinflated basketball) or the eyeball is longer than normal. This irregular eye shape causes a refractive error that focuses images in front of the retina - rather than on the retina itself. If nearsightedness goes untreated, it can result in complications down the road, including:

Eyestrain: As your eyes try to focus blurry vision, they may become strained by overexertion. This can cause sore, watery, or light-sensitive eyes.

Eye problems: Nearsightedness that goes untreated, or cases of severe nearsightedness, can cause serious eye health problems such as:
- Retinal detachment
- Glaucoma
- High myopia (nearsightedness that gets progressively worse)
- Myopic maculopathy (damage to the retina causing vision problems/ vision loss)


Nearsightedness may occur along with astigmatism, a refractive error that causes blurred vision. If you are experiencing persistent vision problems, it is recommended that you talk to an eye doctor (optometrist or ophthalmologist) about vision correction options that might be right for you. Eye health plays a key role in your quality of life, as well as your safety. If nearsightedness goes untreated, it can lead to complications later on in life.

Sesame offers convenient and affordable eye examinations with real, quality doctors in Charlotte, NC. Eye doctors on Sesame can assess give you a vision assessment, discuss treatment options, and prescribe corrective lenses if you need them. Save up to 60% on your next eye exam by booking through Sesame.

Can you correct nearsightedness?

Yep! Nearly all cases of myopia can be improved with corrective lenses, medicated eye drops, and refractive surgery.

The first step toward vision correction is scheduling a comprehensive eye exam with a licensed optometrist. Your eye doctor will perform refraction and eye health assessments to help determine what is causing your vision problems and treatment options that may be right for you.

Common forms of vision correction used to fix nearsightedness include:

Eyeglasses: Prescription eyeglasses feature lenses that help compensate for the refractive error in the eye. Lenses are specially shaped to help light bend properly into the eye.

Contact lenses: Just like eyeglasses, contact lenses correct refractive errors in the eye. Contact lenses can also be used in orthokeratology, which the American Optometric Association (AOA) described as "braces for your eyes". Orthokeratology (Ortho-K) is a process where rigid contact lenses are worn at night to gently reshape the cornea. Orthokeratology is often used with children, as vision can continue to change as they grow older.

If you want to correct your vision problems without having to wear contact lenses or eyeglasses, your eye doctor may recommend a surgical procedure. Eye surgery is normally done through an ophthalmology clinic after a referral from an optometrist. Surgical procedures that correct refractive errors in the eye are known as refractive surgery.

Refractive surgery procedures often include:

Laser-assisted in-situ keratomileusis (LASIK): LASIK surgery is a safe and effective form of refractive error correction. In this procedure, a surgeon will use a focused laser beam to create a tiny flap in the cornea, which they will then reshape to properly refract light into the eye.

Photorefractive keratectomy (PRK): Similarly to LASIK surgery, a surgeon will use a focused laser beam to reshape the curve of the cornea. Instead of cutting a flap in the cornea, as would happen in a LASIK procedure, the surgeon will gently remove the top layer of cells in the cornea and reshape the corneal curve. They will then refit the top layer of cells from the cornea once the shaping is finished. PRK is recommended for people with active lifestyles or jobs. According to the AAO, activity can accidentally dislodge the flap created in the cornea with LASIK. PRK refits the top of the cornea after shaping is finished, so there is less concern after the procedure.

Because nearsightedness can get worse as vision develops and the body grows, there are several therapeutic treatment options available to help slow the progression of distance vision loss. These therapies include:

Ortho-K: Ortho-K contact lenses can help gently reshape the cornea during sleep. Ortho-K treatment, if used consistently and as prescribed, can correct vision problems significantly.

Atropine eye drops: Atropine eye drops help relax the eye's muscle and dilate pupils, helping the eye focus more easily. This has been shown to help slow the progression of nearsightedness, especially in children. Atropine may lead to discomfort and light sensitivity, so long-term use is rarely prescribed by eye doctors.

Multi-focal Lenses: Multifocal lenses in both contacts and eyeglasses have been shown to help slow the progression of nearsightedness in children. These lenses are less effective with adults but have been shown to reduce nearsighted progression by 30-50% in children between the ages of 8-12 years old.

What is farsightedness (hyperopia)?

Farsightedness (hyperopia) is a common eye condition in which you can see distant objects, but nearby objects appear fuzzy. Farsightedness occurs when a lack of curvature in the cornea refracts, or bends, light rays improperly, and results in the blurry vision described above.

Because farsightedness is caused by a flat shape of the cornea or a smaller-than-normal eyeball, it can often run in families. Being farsighted is not an eye disease, and is often easily treated with corrective lenses (such as eyeglasses or contact lenses) or refractive surgery. Hyperopia can occur at birth, or develop over time.

In contrast, nearsightedness (myopia) occurs when the cornea has too much curve, causing close objects to appear in focus, but distant objects appear blurry.

What causes farsightedness?

Farsightedness is usually caused by a refractive error in the cornea or an eye that is shorter than normal. Light rays refract through the cornea and the lens to project images onto the retina at the back of the eye. When the cornea is too flat, or if the eye is too short, images will instead be projected behind the retina.

Improper refraction of light causes near vision to be blurry or fuzzy, but distant objects appear with relative clarity.

As the lens of your eye hardens with age, it becomes harder to focus on nearby objects. As the eye loses "elasticity", farsightedness can occur. Age-related farsightedness is a common vision problem for aging adults and is known as presbyopia.

Farsightedness is a common eye problem that can be easily addressed with eye care and prescriptive treatment options. If you have difficulty focusing on nearby objects or experience eyestrain, it is recommended that you speak with an eye doctor (such as an optometrist or ophthalmologist) to schedule a comprehensive eye exam. An eye doctor will discuss your symptoms with you, conduct an eye test/ vision assessment, and may prescribe treatment if it is needed. After an eye examination, farsighted people are usually able to correct their blurred vision with corrective lenses or refractive surgery.

Can farsightedness be corrected?

In most cases, yes! The overwhelming majority of farsighted and nearsighted people experience improved vision with common treatment options such as prescription lenses and refractive surgery.

These common forms of vision correction include:

Corrective lenses:

Eyeglasses: Prescription eyeglasses feature lenses that help compensate for the refractive error in the eye. Lenses are specially shaped to properly bend light into the eye.

Contact lenses: Much like eyeglasses, contact lenses correct refractive errors in the eye. Contact lenses can also be used in orthokeratology, which the American Optometric Association (AOA) described as "braces for your eyes". Orthokeratology (Ortho-K) is a process where rigid contact lenses are worn at night to gently reshape the cornea. This is more commonly used to correct nearsighted vision and astigmatism.

If you want to correct your vision problems without having to wear contact lenses or eyeglasses, you may choose to opt for surgical procedures. Eye surgery is normally done through an ophthalmology clinic after a referral from an optometrist. Eye surgery done to correct refractive errors in the eye is known as refractive surgery.

Refractive surgery procedures:

- Laser-assisted in-situ keratomileusis (LASIK): LASIK surgery is generally considered a safe and effective form of refractive error correction. In this procedure, a surgeon will use a focused laser beam to create a tiny flap in the cornea, then reshapes the cornea to properly refract light into the eye.

- Photorefractive keratectomy (PRK): Similarly to LASIK surgery, a surgeon will use a focused laser beam to reshape the curve of the cornea. Instead of cutting a flap in the cornea, though, the surgeon will gently remove the top layer of cells in the cornea to be able to reshape the corneal curve. They will then refit the top layer of cells from the cornea once the shaping is finished. PRK is recommended for people with active lifestyles or jobs. According to the AAO, activity can accidentally dislodge the flap created in the cornea with LASIK. PRK refits the top of the cornea after shaping is finished, so this isn't a concern after the procedure.

Do I need glasses for farsightedness?

Not all the time. Some mild cases of farsightedness do not require glasses, as the refractive error in the eye isn't enough to cause blurred vision. Some children may experience farsightedness early in life, but as their eyes lengthen, they grow out of the condition.

While most adults do not experience complications from farsightedness, it can cause damage to eye health. Some complications that may arise from farsightedness include:

  • Lazy eye (amblyopia)

  • Crossed eyes (strabismus)

  • Glaucoma

  • Eyestrain

What is dry eye syndrome and how can I prevent it?

Dry eye syndrome is a condition that occurs when your body does not produce enough tears to sufficiently lubricate your eyes - which can lead to discomfort and even eye infections.

From time to time, it's completely normal for your eyes to feel dry. They could be caused by hormonal changes, aging, or environmental factors like warm weather. There are several ways you can reduce your risk of developing dry eyes. It is recommended that you:

  • Avoid blowing air conditioners, hairdryers, or heaters into your eyes. The air and heat produced by these items can lead to increased tear evaporation and dry eyes.

  • Use a humidifier to keep moisture in the air of your home or place of work. This can help keep the surface of the eyes moist.

  • Take nutritional supplements with omega-3 fatty acids. These have been shown to help reduce symptoms of dry eyes.

  • Blink frequently and take eye breaks while working on a computer. Staring at a computer screen for a long time can cause your eyes to dry out. Similarly, if you are concentrating on a task, you may be less likely to blink, which can prevent eyelids from lubricating the eyes with a tear film. Rest your eyes and remember to blink frequently to keep eyes moist while working on a computer.

  • Wear sunglasses outdoors to protect your eyes from wind and dry air. If you deal with chronic dry eyes, it is recommended that you use sunglasses with wrap-around frames to fully protect the eye.

  • Don't smoke. Smoking can lead to decreased tear production and dry eye syndrome.

When your dry eyes become chronic, it's time for a doctor to get involved. If left untreated, dry eyes can cause discomfort and even vision problems. Connect with a real, qualified eye doctor on Sesame to get the relief you need for your dry eyes. Eye doctors licensed to treat patients in Charlotte, NC can diagnose your condition over video and develop a treatment plan that works for you - all for one affordable, upfront price.

Is dry eye syndrome a serious condition?

Dry eyes are a common eye condition, particularly in adults over the age of 65. There are several dry eye treatments and eye care measures you can take to prevent or reduce the effects of dry eyes. Dry eye syndrome can be easily treated but, if left unaddressed, can begin to have serious impacts on your vision and eye health. Possible side effects of dry eye syndrome include:

- Eye infections: Tears aren't just for crying - they wash away the foreign matter and bacteria that cause eye infections. If your eyes are no longer able to produce a sufficient amount of tears, you may be more prone to eye infections and discomfort.

- Damage to the surface of the eye: Severe cases of dry eyes, as well as chronic dry eye, can damage the surface of the eye. If tear glands are unable to wash away small particles of dirt or debris, small corneal abrasions may occur - leading to vision problems or eye infections. Chronic dry eyes can also inflame the eyelids, causing infections like conjunctivitis. While not the same as bacterial conjunctivitis (or pink eye), this condition can still cause blurry vision and discomfort.

If you are experiencing chronic dry eyes or severe dry eye syndrome, it is recommended that you speak to an ophthalmologist to discuss treatment options and eye care plans that can protect your eyes. If left untreated, dry eye syndrome (or dry eye disease) can lead to dangerous infection and damage to the surface of the eye.

What causes dry eyes?

Tears aren't just for when you're feeling down. They are vital in lubricating and cleaning the surface of the eye (also known as the cornea) and washing away foreign debris. Tear production helps maintain a tear film on the cornea, which fights eye infections and improves eye health. Dry eye disease - also sometimes called dry eye syndrome - occurs when the lacrimal glands in the conjunctiva (the membrane inside the eyelid) are unable to produce enough tears to properly lubricate the eye and supply tears. Some specific causes of dry eyes are:

- Inadequate tear production: If your tear ducts don't produce enough tears to lubricate the eye and maintain a tear film, your eyes are at risk of infection and other serious conditions.

- Environmental factors: Dry air or excessive wind can cause increased tear evaporation and reduced tear production.

- Aging: People ages 65+ may experience dry eyes due to a weakening lacrimal gland. This means that tear production is reduced, and the tear film on the corneal surface is less present. This can lead to eye infections and eye problems.

- Medical conditions: Rheumatoid arthritis, thyroid disorders, Parkinson's Disease, and diabetes can cause dry eyes. Eye diseases can also cause dryness, such as blepharitis (inflammation of the eyelid), ocular rosacea (rosacea in the eyes), or Sjogren's Syndrome (an autoimmune disease that results in chronic dry eyes and dry mouth).

- Medications: Certain medications, such as antihistamines, decongestants, blood pressure medications (such as diuretics), birth control pills, antidepressants, and acne medication can cause reduced tear production.

- Hormonal changes: Hormonal changes during menopause or ingestion of birth control pills can cause women to develop cases of dry eyes.

- Computer use: Long-term computer use can reduce tear production and lead to dry eyes and blurry vision.

- Corneal nerve conditions: Long-term use of contact lenses, or loss of nerve sensitivity due to eye surgery/ refractive surgery (such as LASIK, can reduce tear production and cases of dry eyes.

- Poor quality of tears: Tears are made up of water, oil, and mucus. Eye conditions such as Meibomian Gland Dysfunction are the result of low-quality tears, which can cause symptoms of dry eyes.

What are the symptoms of dry eyes?

Dry eye syndrome is a common but uncomfortable eye condition that, if unaddressed, can have long-term impacts on your eye health. Some common symptoms of dry eyes include:
- Redness
- Stinging, or burning feeling in the eye
- Light sensitivity
- Watery eyes
- Blurred vision
- Stringy mucus in or around the eye


Severe cases of dry eyes can lead to eye infections or eye disease, as the lacrimal glands are unable to create enough lubrication to wash away foreign debris and bacteria in the eye.

What is the best cure for dry eyes?

If you are experiencing chronic dry eyes, or severe dry eye symptoms, it is recommended that you schedule a consultation with an ophthalmologist at an ophthalmology clinic to discuss treatment plans that might be right for you. Eye doctors use a few different methods to treat dry eyes, including:

- Warm compress/ eye masks: Warm compresses applied to the eyelids can help reduce inflammation, stimulate tear production, and ease swelling. Similarly, silicone eye masks worn at night can help hydrate the area around the eyelid and encourage increased tear production.

- Antibiotics: Antibiotics can fight infection and ease inflammation in the eyelid and around the eye. Inflammation can prevent glands in the eyelid from secreting oil into tears, which can lead to accelerated tear evaporation. Antibiotics reduce swelling around the eyelid and help promote the tear creation needed to keep eye infections at bay.

- Artificial tear solutions: Artificial tear drops can help with lubrication and relieve redness in the eye. Be sure to select an artificial tear solution that is preservative-free, however, as these additives can sometimes irritate your eyes and worsen your symptoms.

- Prescription eye drops: Eye drops prescribed by an ophthalmologist or optometrist can help reduce inflammation on the corneal surface. Drugs featuring cyclosporine (such as Restasis) can help control natural tear production, and lessen inflammation.

- Supplements: Omega-3 fatty acids can help encourage tear production, and may be recommended by a doctor as a supplement along with other drugs/ treatment options.

Dry eyes can cause infection and serious side effects, such as vision loss if left untreated. Most cases of dry eyes will go away with eye care treatment and some medication. If symptoms persist, it is recommended that you speak with a doctor to discuss treatment options and prescription medication that may help.

What are common symptoms of glaucoma?

There are multiple forms of glaucoma, which often present different symptoms. The symptoms most commonly associated with these conditions include:
- Open-angle glaucoma
- Blind patches in your peripheral (side) or central vision, often in both eyes
- Advanced phases of tunnel vision
- Acute angle-closure glaucoma
- Severe headaches
- Pain in the eyes
- Hazy vision
- Vomiting and nausea
- Redness in the eyes
- Lights with halo effects

What are the most common treatment options for glaucoma?

Thankfully, there are a number of effective ways to treat glaucoma and the symptoms it causes. According to the Mayo Clinic, these often include:

- Prostaglandins. These reduce your eye pressure by increasing the outflow of the fluid in your eye (aqueous humor). Latanoprost (Xalatan), travoprost (Travatan Z), tafluprost (Zioptan), bimatoprost (Lumigan), and latanoprostene bunod are some of the medications in this category (Vyzulta).Mild reddening and stinging of the eyes, darkening of the iris, darkening of the pigment of the eyelashes or eyelid skin, and blurred vision are all possible adverse effects. This medication is only to be taken once a day.

- Beta-blockers. These lower the pressure in your eye by reducing the production of fluid in your eye (intraocular pressure). Timolol (Betimol, Istalol, Timoptic) and betaxolol are two examples (Betoptic). Breathing difficulties, a decreased heart rate, lower blood pressure, impotence, and weariness are all possible adverse effects. Depending on your condition, this class of medicine may be given for once- or twice-daily use.

- Alpha-adrenergic agonists. These decrease aqueous humor production and promote fluid outflow in your eye. Apraclonidine (Iopidine) and brimonidine are two examples (Alphagan P, Qoliana). An erratic heart rate, elevated blood pressure, weariness, red, itchy, or swollen eyes, and a dry mouth are all possible adverse effects. This class of medication is normally administered twice daily, although it can also be prescribed three times a day.

- Carbonic anhydrase inhibitors. These medicines reduce the production of fluid in your eye. Examples include dorzolamide (Trusopt) and brinzolamide (Azopt). Possible side effects include a metallic taste, frequent urination, and tingling in the fingers and toes. This class of drug is usually prescribed for twice-daily use but sometimes can be prescribed for use three times a day.

- Rho-kinase inhibitor. This medication decreases ocular pressure by inhibiting the rho kinase enzymes that cause fluid accumulation. Netarsudil (Rhopressa) is the brand name for this medication, which is taken once a day. Eye redness, irritation, and deposits accumulating on the cornea are all possible side effects.

- Miotic or cholinergic agents. These enhance the amount of fluid that leaves your eye. Pilocarpine is an example (Isopto Carpine). Headache, eye discomfort, smaller pupils, hazy or poor vision, and nearsightedness are all possible side effects. This type of medication is typically administered up to four times per day. These drugs are no longer commonly recommended due to the risk of side effects and the requirement for daily administration.

Oral medications

If eyedrops alone aren't enough to lower your eye pressure, your doctor may prescribe an oral drug, such as a carbonic anhydrase inhibitor. Frequent urination, tingling in the fingers and toes, sadness, stomach distress, and kidney stones are all possible adverse effects.

Surgery and other therapies

In some cases, your provider may recommend surgery or other therapies to treat your glaucoma. Common glaucoma procedures include:

- Laser therapy. If eyedrops alone aren't enough to lower your eye pressure, your doctor may prescribe an oral drug, such as a carbonic anhydrase inhibitor. Frequent urination, tingling in the fingers and toes, sadness, stomach distress, and kidney stones are all possible adverse effects.

- Filtering surgery. A trabeculectomy (truh-bek-u-LEK-tuh-me) is a surgical operation in which your surgeon makes an opening in the white of the eye (sclera) and removes part of the trabecular meshwork.

- Drainage tubes. A tiny tube shunt is inserted into your eye by your eye surgeon to drain out excess fluid and relieve your eye pressure.

- Minimally invasive glaucoma surgery (MIGS). To lower your eye pressure, your doctor may recommend MIGS surgery. These treatments are less risky and require less immediate postoperative care than trabeculectomy or the placement of a drainage device. They're frequently used in conjunction with cataract surgery. There are several MIGS treatments to choose from, and your doctor will discuss which one is best for you.

- Treating acute angle-closure glaucoma. Glaucoma with acute angle-closure is a medical emergency. If you've been diagnosed with this illness, you'll require immediate therapy to lower your eye pressure. This will usually necessitate the use of medicine as well as laser or other surgical techniques. A laser peripheral iridotomy is a technique in which a doctor uses a laser to create a small opening in your iris. This permits fluid (aqueous humor) to pass through it, reducing strain on the eyes.

What is astigmatism?

Astigmatism is one of the most common vision problems - it is estimated that 33% of all Americans experience it to some degree. It's also one of the main reasons people wear glasses and contacts.

The American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO) defines astigmatism as "...an imperfection in the curvature of your eye's cornea or lens" that causes vision challenges. The cornea - the transparent, front part of the eye - is supposed to be round, like a basketball or tennis ball. In individuals with astigmatism, the cornea becomes slightly warped and begins to look more like a football in shape. These imperfections make it difficult for your eyes to focus light on the retina (the back part of the eye), causing blurred or uneven vision.

Eye doctors conduct eye exams to diagnose astigmatism, which is treatable with prescription eyeglasses or contacts. These lenses compensate for the imperfections in the cornea and properly focus light on the retina - restoring normal vision (voila!).

If you are experiencing nearsighted/farsightedness or blurry vision, connect with a doctor on Sesame today for a video or in-person eye exam.

What are the symptoms of astigmatism?

Astigmatism is a naturally occurring, painless condition. It is caused by an abnormal curvature on the surface of the eye (corneal astigmatism) or in the lens (lenticular astigmatism). In many cases, astigmatism is present with other forms of refractive errors, including:

- Nearsightedness (myopia): distant objects seem blurry

- Farsightedness (hyperopia): nearby objects seem blurry

- Age-related farsightedness (presbyopia): Farsightedness caused by the loss of elasticity in the eye's lens, usually brought on by aging

Astigmatism causes blurry vision, as refracted light creates competing images in the eye. These mismatched images appear foggy or blurry. Your eyes will try to work extra hard to focus on this double vision, which leads to eyestrain and headaches.

Common symptoms of astigmatism include:
- Blurry vision
- Distorted/ fuzzy vision
- Eyestrain
- Headaches
- Difficulty seeing at night
- Squinting


In some cases, you may not experience symptoms of astigmatism at all. If astigmatism goes uncorrected, the strain on your eyes may cause lazy eye (or amblyopia). If you are experiencing any of the symptoms listed above, get in touch with an eye doctor right away. Eye exams are important in helping catch eye conditions like astigmatism before they cause damage to the eye. Your doctor can prescribe corrective lenses or refractive surgery (such as laser surgery) to help correct vision problems you may be experiencing.

What is the treatment for astigmatism?

Astigmatism is a naturally occurring, painless condition. The refractive errors in the eye can lead to blurry vision and eye strain. If left uncorrected, this constant strain on the eye can lead to a lazy eye (or amblyopia).

Most cases of astigmatism are easily corrected. If you're experiencing symptoms of astigmatism - eye strain or blurry vision, for example - connect with an eye doctor on Sesame for an affordable, upfront price to learn about your options and next steps. An eye doctor can talk to you about your degree of astigmatism and the proper eye care needed to help correct it. The most common forms of vision correction are:

Eyeglasses: Prescription eyeglasses contain lenses that help compensate for the refractive error in the eye. Lenses are specially shaped to help light bend properly into the eye.

Contact lenses: Contact lenses, like eyeglasses, correct refractive errors in the eye. Contact lenses can also be used in orthokeratology, which the American Optometric Association (AOA) described as "braces for your eyes". Orthokeratology is a process where rigid contact lenses are worn at night to gently reshape the cornea. Orthokeratology is often used with children, as vision can continue to change as they grow older.

Refractive surgery: In cases of severe vision problems, or if a patient simply does not want to wear corrective lenses, refractive surgery can be performed as a method of vision correction. The most common forms of refractive surgery are:

Laser-assisted in-situ keratomileusis (LASIK): LASIK surgery is generally considered a safe and effective form of refractive error correction. In this procedure, a surgeon will use a focused laser beam to create a tiny flap in the cornea, then reshapes the cornea to properly refract light into the eye.

Photorefractive keratectomy (PRK): Similarly to LASIK surgery, a surgeon will use a focused laser beam to reshape the curve of the cornea. Instead of cutting a flap in the cornea, though, the surgeon will gently remove the top layer of cells in the cornea and reshape the corneal curve. They will then refit the top layer of cells from the cornea once the shaping is finished. PRK is recommended for people with active lifestyles. According to the AAO, activity can accidentally dislodge the flap created in the cornea with LASIK. PRK refits the top of the cornea after shaping is finished, so this isn't a concern after the procedure.

Most forms of refractive error can be easily corrected with the help of an eye doctor. Whether you need corrective lenses or surgery, it is important for your eye health that you get help with any vision problems you may have. Even if you don't notice any symptoms of astigmatism, you might have small refractive errors in your eyes that can lead to complications down the road. The AOA recommends that adults get comprehensive eye exams every few years, to catch any eye conditions before they become serious. Save up to 60% on your next eye exam by booking through Sesame. Search for the doctor you want to see, compare prices, and book a visit at your convenience. It's that simple.