All posts by Dr Larry Harrison

Children and Digital Media


Sleeping with cell phones or tablets can lower the quality of sleep states a medical article in  Univadis publication. This can be an important concern to all people and especially the young. The article states nearly 1/5th of all children sleep with their cellphones and quality of sleep may affect their health and immune system.

A recent CNN article reports a study by the American Academy of Pediatrics which sets guidelines. The academy recommends that for children 2 to 5 years of age, screen time should be limited to one hour per day.


For kids ages 6 and older, parents can determine the restrictions for time spent using screen, as well as monitor the types of digital media their children use.

Babies are most vulnerable to screens. Infants aged 18 months and younger should not be exposed to any digital media, the academy says.

Digital media has opened the door to wonderful access to knowledge. However, like anything in life, moderation is the key and protecting children from undo eyestrain and poor sleep.


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Adapting To Progressive Glasses


 Progressive lenses actually have three different focal distances all in one pair of eyeglasses.  Progressive lenses address near, intermediate and distance vision—without a visible, defined line in the lenses.  Using progressive lenses sometimes takes a bit of adjustment if you are new to them. These lenses are not like single lenses or bi-focal lenses.

Lined Bifocal
  1. Turning Your Head, Not Your Eyes

The main difference between natural sight and seeing through progressive lenses is that you will need to turn your head to focus on an object instead of moving your eyes from side to side.

The corrective portion of your new glasses is in the middle of the lenses and trying to look through the outer portion of the lenses will appear fuzzy and out-of-focus. Therefore, you must look through the middle of the lenses and turn your head to look at objects that are not directly in front of you.


  1. Move Your Head Vertically

Once you have turned your head to view an object straight on, you must then move your head up and down to bring the object into focus. This allows you to locate the one of three distances in your progressive prescription which will work the best and produce the sharpest image for you.


There are many measurements that need to be done specifically for your eyes and the frame you choose. When everything is properly set up, a simple small moving your head will provide you with the vision you need at all distances.

Learning to focus will take some time and practice until it becomes second nature to you. It’s a lot like when you first get a car and it’s raining and you try to find where the controls for the lights and wipers are among all the other knobs. After a short time, you learn them so well that you can carry on a conversation with your passenger and use all the controls like it’s on automatic.

  1. Wear Your Glasses High

To give your eyes the greatest amount of corrective lenses surface to view through, it is important to wear progressive lenses high up on the bridge of your nose and as close to your face as possible.

This is exactly where your eye doctor should have measured and fitted your glasses for the best correction to your vision. Do not allow the glasses to shift or move on your nose, as this will prevent you from being able to gain focus. If your glasses are moving or shifting, bring them back for a fitting adjustment.

  1. Stop or Minimize Wearing Your Old Glasses

A person’s sight is a combination of the eyes and the brain working together to focus on objects at different distances. However, with progressive lenses you will have to retrain your brain and eyes to work together through the prescription of your new lenses. Minimize switching back and forth between your old and new glasses as you may disturb the retraining process. Retraining your eyes and brain to work with the new glasses may take anywhere from a few days to a few weeks. Please contact our office if you have any difficulties or questions.

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Special Eyeglasses For Computer Eyestrain?

type man2






Years ago, most people who worked at desks would open their mail, read it and then pull out their typewriter or pen and paper and respond. Those days are practically ancient history now. When before, our eyes would glance around the room while opening our mail and then look up while thinking of how to respond, these days that’s rarely the case. Our computers go from one email to the other with no lag of time for us to glance across the room or, if lucky, out the window. All this contributes to computer eye strain.


Our eyes are not prepared for constant sustained near work.  For thousands of years, the near work demanded of our eyes was pulling the spear out of some Mammoth beast after the hunt.  There was no Instagram or Facebook need for posting pictures of our hunt and sharing with nearby tribes.


Looking at a monitor 22-26 inches away puts a demand on your eye’s focusing lens. Just like holding your arm out straight is an easy  task for 30 seconds but after 5 minutes keeping it straight out becomes a daunting task, your eyes operate in like manner.

They need to look away every few minutes for proper function and to reduce stress. In our work environment, looking away, even if possible, typically is not done due to a stream of work on the computer monitor in front of us.

This is why in many cases of prolonged computer work, a person needs a specialized computer pair of eyeglasses. When people become older and need reading glasses, specialized computer glasses become of paramount importance.  When people wear progressive (bifocal) eyeglasses, they cannot see the screen without tilting their head back, as the reading portion is at the bottom of their glasses. This is not only inefficient but, like carpal tunnel syndrome, can cause neck injury and pain.

A specialized computer prescription is designed to reduce stress at the computer monitor distance and drastically reduces eyestrain and radically improves work efficiency.

Contact us at 415-747-8191 or read more at our website.

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Alzheimer’s Detection In The Eye

altzheimer1There are many devastating diseases of aging like hypertension, diabetes and heart disease. However, none impacts the family quite as much as the emotional and psychological impact of Alzheimer’s disease.    

A relatively new eye scan instrument called an OCT –  OcularOCT machineCoherence Tomography – has been used to evaluate glaucoma, macular degeneration and retinal holes and detachments. Now, researchers have determined a connection between OCT results and early Alzheimer’s detection.

Early detection can help with early treatments – though treatments are far less than medicine would like. However, early detection would help in early diagnosis and provide for life’s adjustment in a more comfortable fashion – both for the patient and for developing family support.

Though very technical, the OCT instrument scans the back of the eye in real time. The entire process takes less than 1 minute and requires no drops or medicines to perform.

Below is an image created by the OCT of a detailed picture of the retina at the back of the eye.  Deposits in the retina (drusen) or reduction of the number of transmission  nerve fiber layer may be indicators of oncoming Alzheimer’s.

Imre Lengyell, PhD discusses in this short video his thoughts over drusen and Alzheimer’s.

It is awesome that research continues not only in this ocular area but in all areas of medicine to discover causes, early detection and possible treatments for this horrific disease which strips a person of his cognitive abilities and yet physically he or she still lives.




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How Do You Feel About Makeup?


There’s many things we all do in our society to gain attention and feel good about ourselves. From buying expensive cars to way bigger homes than we need – in part to fulfill ‘something’ that psychologists discuss at their seminars.

Makeup is one of these.


Primarily used by women to create ‘a look’ that generally gets an accompanying positive reaction from those who see them. Such is the circle – ie: chicken and the egg scenario.

Leave out the billions spent on makeup and the hungry children it could feed, makeup impacts the self esteem of many women and it begins early in life.  On the site EmpowHer, Weaver discusses The Connection Between Makeup and Mental Health. 

With growing concerns over anorexia and body shape image, surely makeup warrants some attention regarding how women end up viewing themselves.

I personally shared a house with a woman years ago who would turn off the lights before getting into bed with her  boyfriend – keeping her makeup on. Later she would get up and remove it and wake up earlier to put it on before he might see her.  In her mind, he liked ‘the her’ with the makeup on – how ‘could’ she take the risk he might not like her ‘without’ it?


Many men think makeup is taking a couple of minutes to put on lipstick or eye shadow. Often this is not the case  and the process can take 20-30 minutes – involving foundation, multiple products for eye shadow, highlighters, powder and liner around the lips before lipstick application.  One product is even called “correcting’. This ( 45 min ) video of Maria “Makeup Tutorial” shows the extent of what the process can be like for many. The first 5 minutes will show you a lot.

Starting Early In Life
Starting Early In Life

The impact on young girls can last a lifetime. Taylor Griffith writing for the HUFF PostTeen,  brings this to light in her article “Too Much Makeup Too Soon?”

If you’re a man, next time you browse the magazine rack pick up a copy of a woman’s magazine. You will see a plethora of ads for wrinkles, shiny hair, smooth legs, enticing lipstick and tons of ads for makeup.  Men have no such advertising aimed at them so consistently.

What to do? I really do not know.  As with most things, progress begins with awareness and knowledge –  and the desire for others to enjoy ‘who they are’.

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