Thursday, March 1, 2018

MiSight Myopia Control contact lenses - part 2

MiSight lenses were launched at the beginning of 2018, but the technology behind them has been thoroughly tested.

Firstly the lens material has been around for over a decade, we know that it performs well on the eye.  It is comfortable to wear and stable.  We also know that single use daily disposable lenses are the safest way to wear contact lenses.

When studying the lenses, CooperVision choose children from age 8 - 15 years old.  One factor they looked at was how successful the children were in taking care of their contact lenses, and after a month of wear with the contact lenses 100% of the children could easily remove their contacts, 85% also found them easy to insert.  Over the three year study, 100% of those that remained with using the contact lenses reported that they were "happy" with the overall experience.

In the same study, the myopia progression for those wearing the lenses was 59% less than those wearing regular one day single use lenses of the same material, but without the ActivControl Technology.  Importantly this coincided with the measurements of the elongation of the eye, which was 52% less.

It is this eye elongation which we think leads to many of the risks of ocular side effects including retinal detachment and glaucoma.  To be clinically successful in protecting the health of the eyes, the contact lenses don't just need to manage the focus of the eyes, but also the elongation.

The lenses work by providing the retina with different focusing zones, this use of peripheral de-focus has been an emerging concept which we have followed with interest over the last few years.  It completely changes some of our thoughts and models relating to how myopia develops, but it also provides an exciting opportunity to start to understand how we can slow myopic progression.

It must be noted that this may provide some minimal ghosting or a soft-focus type effect on the overall vision, studies have found that this is not unacceptable and doesn't impact on the overall quality of vision experienced by children wearing the lenses.

If you are interested in finding out more about this exciting development in the world of contact lenses and children's vision then don't hesitate to make an appointment.  We will go through all of the information about the contact lenses, starting with a comprehensive eye examination to assess the prescription and the health of the eyes.

Thursday, February 8, 2018

MiSight Myopia Control contact lenses - Part 1

A brand new contact lens has been launched onto the market with some pretty bold claims, we wanted to find out more about it.

There is no doubt that myopia (or nearshightedness) is becoming increasingly common.  Studies have shown that in the US over 40% of the population are nearsighted and in some Asian countries this level can be over 80%.  With the current trends, these numbers seem set to continue to rise.

Myopia doesn't just inconvenience someone by requiring them to wear glasses or contact lenses to see distant objects clearly, but also makes the eye more prone to serious sight threatening conditions.  It is this concerning aspect of myopia which makes controlling its development of particular interest.  If we can reduce the risk of retinal detachment, glaucoma, cataract development and myopic macular degeneration then we can make a real impact on the health of our patients' eyes.

Currently we do not fully understand why myopia develops, although we are aware of various risk factors.  It is also common to find that once myopia starts in childhood, it tends to continue to progress developing throughout the teenage years and even in to the early twenties.

There have been various different systems for slowing myopia progression used over the years including rigid contact lenses, orthokeratology, bifocal and multifocal spectacle lenses, bifocal contact lenses and even specific eye drops.

Studies have also shown that if children spend consistent time outdoors in natural daylight, myopia progression is significantly reduced, so we do encourage making lifestyle changes to try to minimise myopic changes.

All of the various systems that have been used previously have advantages, but significant hurdles, which has kept their use to a minimum before.  CooperVision's new single use daily contact lens, MiSight, has the possibility of being a real game changer!

So our first piece of advice is to ensure plenty of outdoors time for children!

Our next post will look more at the actual technology of the lenses themselves.

Tuesday, November 7, 2017


This year we decided the team at Ocean deserved some proper staff photos. No more Instagram selfies (those filters are so forgiving!), but something that makes it clear we’re proud to be unique with our own sense of style. The results were amazing, and this is the story behind those great shots. 

We’re fortunate in Halifax that there are so many great businesses, especially downtown, but Applehead Studios is a standout company.  If you’re not aware of their work, you should be, it’s amazing!  They’re highly-regarded for their beautiful wedding photography, but they can do so much more and we gave them permission to give us the Applehead treatment ... complete creative free reign. Were we nervous, absolutely!

An easy rapport was struck because we both respect what each other does. They were grinning that we didn’t want the usual straight-laced headshots for corporate clients and politicians. No, we wanted something creative to capture not just what we do but some of our spirit. Ocean Optometry has always been something more than testing eyes and selling glasses. We aspire to help our customers express themselves and provide real care in everything we do.

For us, testing eyes isn’t just our job. You only have one pair of eyes and so our exams are thorough with an unusual attention to detail, but a key difference is how we make them personal. We appreciate that you’re unique and so a conveyor belt approach doesn’t fit with our ethos. Also, you might of noticed, we LOVE eyewear. We don’t do off-the-shelf products with brands attached to sell you an image. People come to us for the finest eyewear, and we give it to them. On our shelves you’ll find pieces made by artisan craftsmen, with the beautiful acetates, titanium, horn, and wood. Naturally, we use the best ophthalmic lenses too. This is another thing that ourselves and Applehead agree on, the optics produced by Nikon in both their camera technology and their spectacle lens technology is astounding.  Your eyes will thank you, and they’re welcome.

We wanted to ensure that the photographs captured something of the individual people, a geek, a biker, a reader and an outdoorsman; that they captured the essence of Ocean Optometry.  Having traveled an ocean to get here, we’re proud of our new home, and wanted to capture this with a strong reference to the history of Nova Scotia and its connection with the sea.

After many ideas, the concept was decided upon and we’re pleased to introduce:

#OceanShoot2017 – The Fishing Shack

Set in a timeless moment, perhaps early in the morning, eyes full of optimism for the day ahead.  A classic scene, peaceful and enduring, where victories aren’t easily won, but gratefully earned.

The sea salt is ingrained in every pixel, a sense of excited expectation palatable in the air.

Just beware of the seagull.

Mike Bonang

Alicia Austin

Dr. Euan McGinty

Dr. John Wilson




Many thanks to Applehead Studio for knocking this one out of the park!

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

The Coast's Best of Halifax 2017

We make no bones about it, we love being part of the community of Halifax and, in particular, in playing our role as a downtown business.  We also love being in Nova Scotia, our connection with the sea is a strong one!

Practicing optometry in Nova Scotia means that we have to comply with the Standards of Practice for Optometry set by the Nova Scotia College of Optometrists (NSCO).  As such, we have just received a news bulletin from the College which makes it very clear that we cannot participate in any "Best of" award run by media or organisations such as the Chambers of Commerce.

We have only been open for four years and in that short time we have been fortunate to have been nominated for a Chamber of Commerce Best New Business award and several of The Coast's "Best of Halifax" award.  Once again we have been nominated for The Coast's "Best of" awards (although as we placed Gold last year, we were also automatically included).

Having received the above recent communication for the NSCO, we immediately contacted The Coast to ensure that we are withdrawn from their awards.

We are very grateful for everyone who has thought us worthy of their vote and their support since we opened just a few years ago and it is with much regret that we have to withdraw from the contest. 

We never opened Ocean Optometry to win awards though, we opened with the desire to bring the world's finest eyewear made by independent companies to Halifax and to provide excellent optometric care for our patients.  We have done this without relying on promotions, discounts or specials; believing that people appreciate fair and reasonable pricing without gizmos and giveaways.

We wish everyone participating The Coast's Best of Halifax 2017 awards well, we would encourage you to vote for your favourite businesses, venues, places and fine folks. More importantly, we'd encourage you to support the many great local independent business that Halifax has with your custom!

The Coast's Best of Halifax 2017

Best of luck, everyone, and thank you for your ongoing support.

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Life lessons from a NYC Cabbie!

Happy Cabbie NYC!

Every year we travel to some pretty amazing destinations to find the world's leading eyewear of distinction to bring back to Halifax.  In April we headed to New York to see what we could find.  With all our appointments taken care of, evening events attended, art appreciated and tunes grooved to, we finally had some personal time.

We headed out with some personal goals to tick off, and swiftly after enjoying some fine New York Pizza (Alicia) and beautifully designed Japanese merchandise (Euan) we started to explore the best that Manhattan had to offer ... and we kind of got tied up in traffic!

A few hours later we had explored, travelled and enjoyed, all meaning that were now a bit further away from where we'd hoped to be with a deadline to get back to the exhibition centre, collect our luggage and catch a bus to the airport.

Nothing for it, let's hail a cab and get us back to base ASAP.

A few minutes of searching and strategic positioning amongst the streetscape resulted in a yellow car pulling over, Mike had his hand raised, he was the winner, he'd hailed the cab.  Our motley crew - Mike & Alicia (opticians to the generally fabulous), Euan & John (optometrists par excellence) piled in.  Mike was in the front, and the three remainers were in the back.

Perhaps we should have suspected something when our cabbie exclaimed, before we piled in, "I AM SO HAPPY THAT YOU ARE GOING TO BE MY RIDE!".


Directions given, "Javits Center", we sat back and thought, well this is going to take as long as it's going to take.  We all sat quietly downhearted at the thought of a trek to the airport taking somewhat longer than necessary.  Little did we know that this was going to be no ordinary cab ride!

A couple of streets past, we were starting to make good time, I sat back a little.  The window was wound down, fresh air was flowing.  The driver had quite the thumping soundtrack going and was making swift progress down Murray Street.  We made to cut across West Broadway, but several lanes of stationery traffic blocked our progress.  This was nothing more than a challenge to our cabbie, who started to wave his hands as though trying to part the Red Sea.  As soon as the slightest inch was given, he moved in to the space.  None of this was done in an aggressive or forceful manner, but with a humble, pleading gestures and a smiling expression on his face.

The expression on Mike's face was quite the picture as well.  Riding shotgun, Mike was getting the full experience of the cab ride, only to be heightened when our driver turned to Mike, while the car was straddling several lanes of traffic, and started to advise, "My friend, in life, you need to focus on the rose."

"Focus on the ROAD" was Mike's prompt reply, "No, no," our driver reassured, "not the road, but the rose." all the time with his hand cupped in the air like a stem flower, slowly opening in the sun.

"You see everything in nature, everything natural, is beautiful".

Was that the Avenues of the Americas we'd just torn down? Pausing at lights beside a Maserati dealership, maybe there was beauty all around.  The whole car rocking back in forth in time to the beat, as our happy cabby pumped the brakes and flashed the internal light on and off.  Disco cab!

Bedford Street!

What were we doing on Bedford Street?  In the back we felt like we needed to suck in breath to try to help the cab squeeze past the parked cars lining both sides of the narrow.  It felt like we were driving through a movie set, with brownstone buildings and zig-zag fire escapes all around us.

"You have a gap, just like Madonna" the driver said, staring in to the rear view mirror.  Fine time to be noticing small gaps!  "It's very lucky, my daughter has the same!".  Never mind the gap between Alicia's teeth, let's make sure the cab can go through that gap ahead!!

We burst out from traffic on to West Street, the sun sparkling on the Hudson as people were on bikes, roller blades and long boards enjoying the afternoon sun on the Greenway.

"You must look after your queen".  Now this was a confusing instruction, lots of ambiguity, but after more suggestions we worked out that the advice was to take good care of your loved one, your significant other (we think).  

A few more twists and turns, ducking under the Highline a couple of  times and all of a sudden we emerge with five minutes to spare at the Javits Center.  As we are paying, our cabbie advises, "Search YouTube - Happy Cabby NYC - that's me!"  Four of us in the cab and not one of us had thought to grab our cellphones.

We all left the cab with big grins on our face, it had been a wild ride with life lessons along the way.  As we stepped away, someone in the crowd coming towards us yelled, "Hold that cab" ... with pleasure - enjoy the ride!

If you're in New York and you're lucky enough, we too hope that you get to have a ride with Happy Cabbie NYC!

Here's some videos from people who didn't forget they had cameras in their phones!

Peace & Love!