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See Under the Sea & in the Swimming Pool Too

Wear goggles for clear & healthy underwater vision

You don’t swim naked at a public beach or swimming pool, and you shouldn’t swim with naked eyes either! At the beach, it’s hard to know if ocean water is really clean and not polluted, and the sand and salt content can make your eyes sting. If you prefer swimming in a pool, remember that while pool water can be clean, that’s only because it’s packed with chlorine, which can seriously irritate your eyes, stripping away your lubricating film and causing redness, pain, and blurry vision.

Goggles are the ideal solution for protecting your delicate eyes against the harshness of water. Also, due to advanced materials and modern engineering of the lenses in swim goggles, they provide crisper underwater vision than ever before! Your knowledgeable Clearwater eye doctor explains about the benefits and features of goggles:

Prescription goggles

If you normally need eyeglasses or contacts to see above water, our Clearwater optometrist strongly recommends buying a pair of prescription goggles for underwater vision. For you to see, light rays reflect off an object, enter your eyes, and are focused on your retina clearly. However, light rays don’t function the same way when they are in water. That’s why the floor of a swimming pool appears higher up than it really is. In general, goggles correct this problem by creating an air-filled gap around your eyes. But this doesn’t give sharp sight to swimmers who need vision correction. If you have nearsightedness, farsightedness, or astigmatism, you’ll need prescription goggles to see.

Wearing contact lenses and standard goggles

A lot of people are in the habit of wearing standard goggles over their contact lenses, instead of purchasing a pair of prescription goggles. What’s the problem with this? Actually, water is the problem.

Water in all bodies – lakes, pools, oceans, and hot tubs – is a natural breeding ground for bacteria and microorganisms. While your body and your eyes have a built-in defense system to protect against these menacing microbes, contact lenses interfere with your eye’s protection. Consequently, swimming with contact lenses increases your risk of getting an eye infection.

Acanthamoeba keratitis is an extremely hazardous eye infection caused by amoeba being trapped between your contact lens and your cornea. Sometimes, amoeba start to live in your eye, leading to corneal ulcers and permanent vision loss. This type of infection only happens to people who wear contact lenses, which underscores our Clearwater eye doctor’s warning against swimming with contacts!

Now, we also realize that many people will insist on wearing contact lenses at the beach or pool – despite all of our warnings. If you’re one of those people, here are some tips to help you minimize the danger to your eye health:

  • Wear daily disposable contacts for swimming, since you throw them out after a single use. Remove them immediately after you come out of the water, rinse your eyes with artificial tears and replace your lenses with a new, clean pair.
  • Even if you’re didn’t fully dip into the water, if any drops fall into your eyes, remove your contacts immediately and throw them out, or disinfect them if you aren’t wearing disposables.
  • Never open your eyes underwater
  • Never go swimming and then doze off on the shore or poolside with your lenses still in your eyes

Top features for goggles – recommended by our Clearwater optometrist

  • Prescription lenses, if you generally need eyewear with vision correction
  • Shatterproof lenses
  • Anti-fog treatment
  • Leak-free lenses that seal comfortably around your eyes
  • Built-in UV protection
  • Surfers should wear polarized lenses to protect against reflected glare, which can be very intense on the water
  • Competitive swimmers and divers should choose frames with a low profile
  • Recreational lap swimmers do best with larger lenses (they give wider peripheral vision), and more padded frames

More questions about swimming and vision? Ask our Clearwater eye doctor!

Before you dive into the blue, sparkling waters at the beach or swimming pool, consult with an expert optometrist near you. We’ll help you find the safest way to have sharp underwater vision and a fabulous look! If you do experience irritated eyes, strange discharge, pain, sensitivity or redness after wearing your contact lenses while swimming, contact us immediately for an eye exam at Northwood Vision.

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. Christopher Keats treats patients from all over Clearwater, Florida with their vision correction needs. The knowledgeable, caring staff at Northwood Vision 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. Christopher Keats, 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 Northwood Vision, 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.

Learn More About Designer Brand of Eyewear

Northwood Vision: Eye Doctor & Optical in Clearwater Florida

Boutique Eyewear | Expert Eye Care

Optometrists near you offer complete eye care services including comprehensive eye exams, as well as the management of ocular diseases. At our in-house optical, for your convenience, you can pick up your prescription eyeglasses; we stock designer eye frames, sunglasses, contact lenses, and provide fittings and style advice.

Dr. Keats pays particular attention to the small details of each eye examination and demonstrates the new prescription in a trial eyeglasses frame, taking you out of the exam room and into in a real-world environment. This gives you confidence that your new eyeglasses or contact lens prescription will be to your liking before you make the investment.

Northwood Vision accepts a number of Insurance plans to help cover the cost of your eye care. Visit us at our vision center today! Call (727) 205-0445 to schedule an appointment or click here. We are conveniently located in Clearwater, Florida, and service Safety Harbor, Palm Harbor, Dunedin, Oldsmar, Largo, and the entire Clearwater area. We are the local optometric practice near you with unsurpassed customer service.

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What Makes Northwood Vision Unique

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We offer comprehensive eye exams for the entire family. Call Northwood Vision today schedule your annual vision test!
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Contact Lenses for You

We offer a wide range of contact lenses to fit your needs including contact lenses exams and fittings.
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We are always getting new arrivals of frames, like these new glasses from Gwen Stefani...
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Meet Our Eye Doctor

Our eye doctor, Dr. Christopher Keats provides quality eye care services and vision care products in Clearwater, Florida. We truly care about the health of your eyes and provide comprehensive vision care to all family members. At Northwood Vision, Dr. Keats is known for his detail-oriented approach to patient care, from the extensive history to better understand any symptoms or conditions you may exhibit, to the way your eyes work individually and together. Dr. Keats spends extra time with each patient and tailors his examination to best treat each individual.

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Dr. Christopher Keats

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Where We Are

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Our Eye Doctor

Optometrist in Clearwater, FL

Eye care professionals specialize in understanding how the human eye really works, as well as diseases and conditions that affect your vision – many of which do not have obvious symptoms. Eye doctors know how age and risk factors affect vision over time for young and old, and they understand the benefits and features of corrective lenses including eyeglasses and contacts.

Northwood Vision in Clearwater, FL

Our optometrist takes the time to explain the results of your eye exam, describe your options and listen to your eye care needs. Because maintaining good eye health is an ongoing partnership, we encourage you to ask questions and share your health information, which could be vital to monitoring, diagnosing and treating potential vision problems.

Meet Our Clearwater, FL Eye Doctor:

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Dr. Christopher Keats

Christopher K. Keats O.D received a Bachelor of Science in Biology from Emory University, before attending Southern College of Optometry in Memphis. Dr. Keats graduated as a doctor of optometry in May, 1999 and practiced in Indiana and Hernando County before purchasing Northwood Vision in 2012.

After high school, Chris moved to Atlanta, GA to attend Emory University, graduating with a BS in Biology, with the first two years of his collegiate career at Emory’s parent school, the smaller campus, Oxford College of Emory University.

After Emory, Chris spent one year living in Anchorage, Alaska taking classes and teaching Biology labs.  While home at Christmas Break, he met Michaela Spoto, a Tampa native. In the three weeks they knew each other, Chris and Michaela fell instantly in love.  Then it was back to Anchorage for Chris, but after five long months apart, they were reunited when Chris came home from Alaska.  About a year later, Chris and Michaela were married on July 15, 1995.

The newlyweds relocated to Memphis, TN where they spent the next four years until Chris graduated from Southern College of Optometery as a doctor of optometry in May, 1999.  During this time, Michaela was the family bread winner, teaching as a Special Education teacher in the town of Millington just outside Memphis.  As Dr. Keats was finishing school, his first born, Katie became a part of the Keats Family.

After graduation, Dr. Keats moved his family up to Mishawaka / South Bend Indiana, and practiced there and in Elkhart in a large group practice called Optical One.  In just two years, Michaela was already tired of lake effect snow and dreary skies and the young family moved back down to Florida.

They settled in the Hernando County and  for eleven years, Dr. Keats worked independently in several practices there, including Sears Optical, Spring Hill Eye Center, Clear Vision Optical, and in a medical referral center called The Eye Center, with Joseph C. Militello, MD.  During this time, Dr. Keats established an excellent reputation in the community and was  given both the gold and the silver award by the St. Petersburg Times “Best of Hernando” poll at Clear Vision Optical and Sears Optical!

His son, Ethan was born in 2001, a true Florida native like his mom!

In the summer of 2012, Dr. Keats and his family moved back to the Clearwater area, and settled down in Safety Harbor.  At about this time, Dr. Barry Cochran contacted him and offered to sell his practice, Northwood Vision, to Dr. Keats.  At the end of November, 2012, Dr. Cochran retired from Northwood Vision, and Dr. Keats took over the practice.

In his spare time, Dr. Keats enjoys kayaking, bike riding, and science fiction.  He is active in his new church, and for years, he and Michaela have been committed to helping married couples strengthen their relationships.

Meanwhile, Dr. Keats is excited to meet the many patients who have been coming to Northwood Vision for years, and also expand the practice with the new faces that will come through the doors.  Thank you for reading about your doctor, and we look forward to getting to know you better in the years to come!