When the sun blazes upon us during the peak summer months, sunglasses are a must-have accessory. I, myself, have a pair of shades in my bag as well as a backup pair in my car since I’ve been in too many situations where I have found myself blocking the sun with my hands because I forgot my sunglasses. Therefore, a second pair is very beneficial (and gave me a reason to try out a different frame style).
The other day I was shopping at a department store and noticed a woman sporting some very chic designer sunglasses. Although I loved the glasses I couldn’t help but wonder why she would want to wear them while shopping indoors. Especially while she is looking at clothes, I mean how could she figure out what she wants if she can’t fully inspect the colors?
So out of curiosity I went inside my next destination with my sunglasses on. I thought maybe I would feel more confident or people would think I was famous (most likely not but I can dream!) Honestly, I felt silly with them on and it was difficult for me to judge the clothing items I was looking at. When I got to the check out, I had to take them off because I just felt ridiculous and rude speaking to the cashier while my sunglasses were on. This lead me to wonder if there is some sort of sunglasses etiquette people could follow.
Now I am by no means an etiquette expert but I came across a fellow blogger who is in fact an expert and got some help from her blog post about this subject (Diane Gottsman). With that being said, I compiled a short list and I hope this will be as interesting to you as it is to me!
Do not wear your sunglasses when conducting business. Maintaining eye contact while in a business setting is crucial. You want the person your communicating with to know he or she has your full attention. With sunglasses on they do not know where you are looking at! For all they know you could be asleep!
Don’t use someone else sunglasses as a mirror. Okay I must admit, sometimes when I’m talking to someone wearing sunglasses, I tend to check/fix my hair off the reflection of the sunglasses (in my defense it’s usually a friend!). It seems harmless, but how would you feel if someone was in your face checking their teeth or primping? Save it for the bathroom or at least use your phone!
Avoid wearing sunglasses indoors. Wearing sunglasses inside (especially in a formal setting) is pretty attention getting and may come off as disrespectful or rude. Therefore, it is probably best to put them away until you leave (Unless, of course, you have medical condition that requires the use of sunglasses).
Protect your sunglasses. When you are not wearing them, it is best to put them away. As I mentioned in a previous blog post (From top of the Head to Around the Neck: Our Chains are Saving Your Glasses) I am guilty of wearing my glasses AND sunglasses on top of my head. Despite the fact that this is an easy/fast way of putting them away, it can be harmful to the lenses and may not be a suitable accessory in a business setting (even though it serves as a great head band!) I have also seen people clip them in front of their shirts or even on the back of their heads, but it is best to store them in their case or even on a chain for the best protection.
Designer shades aren’t necessary. I recently had a friend tell me that he purchased a $300 pair of sunglasses for when he has to meet with clients or is in a business setting ($300?!) Getting luxury shades isn’t really necessary if you are just looking for style, comfort, and protection. In fact, there are plenty of sunglasses that will cover all three of these areas AND are reasonably priced. (For instance, check out some of the sunglasses we offer on our own website!)
Although I myself am guilty of a few of these points, I think it is interesting to know what kind of impression these simple accessories can give off.
Almost fifteen years ago I did a presentation in my second-grade class about someone I considered a hero. A lot of my classmates did their projects on presidents such as Abraham Lincoln or some well-known athletes, but I chose to my project on my grandpa. Apart from being a caring and devoting grandfather, he was also an extraordinary ophthalmologist who discovered the cause of retrolental fibroplasia nearly 66 years ago.
Retrolental fibroplasia (today known as incubator blindness), a disease that causes total and permanent blindness, was affecting premature babies placed in incubators in the hospital during the 1930’s. The disease became more widespread as incubators became more commonplace and continued to cause blindness in thousands of children during the 1940’s and 1950’s (In fact this was the disease that permanently blinded musician Stevie Wonder.) It was even predicted that by 1955 all pre-mature babies would be born blind. Therefore, many eye research laboratories around the country were desperate to find a cure for this terrible disease.
As the researchers at an array of laboratories worked to find a solution, my grandpa, Dr. Szewczyk, had been quietly doing his own investigating. It all started when an East St. Louis pediatrician, Dr. William Knaus, requested his ophthalmic assistance with treating premature babies at the Christian Welfare Hospital in East St. Louis. There my grandfather was astonished and deeply saddened at the prevalence of this disease and soon made it his goal to find the solution. After several years of observation and research, he came to the shocking conclusion that the misuse of oxygen was the source of retrolental fibroplasia. He theorized that careful control of the oxygen would help prevent the terrible disease. In 1951, he presented his findings to the St. Louis Ophthalmic Society and soon his discovery changed the entire dynamic of retrolental fibroplasia throughout the world.
As he was a very humble man, Dr. Szewczyk did not request any recognition for his work on retrolental fibroplasia, but surprisingly in 1976 he was awarded the International Leslie-Dana Gold Medal for the Prevention of Blindness by the St. Louis Society for the Blind as well as several other awards from various organizations.
When I was a child, he never spoke much about his discovery and the huge impact it had made. Therefore, I really did not think much about this accomplishment. However, I will never forget in high school, a teacher of mine found out he was my grandpa and told me that he had saved her from a life of blindness. From then on, I knew that he was not just a hero of mine but a hero to many others.
A few months ago I was given a prescription for computer/reading glasses from my optometrist. Just as I do with my sunglasses, I would place the glasses on top of my head when I didn’t need to use them. At the time, I thought it was so much easier than bringing my eyeglass case everywhere I went. (And it served as a great headband!) However, I started to notice that my glasses were becoming a lot looser and tons of smudges were appearing on the lenses. I found myself cleaning them almost every time I put them on. Now I understand that I was stretching them out – but what about the vast number of smudges on the lenses? Why did it seem like my glasses constantly needed cleaning?
It turns out that the oils and products in your hair can build up deposits where your lenses sit. Also, according to Eye2Eye Optometry Corner, even though they are very small, your hair fibers can scratch your lenses over time. Not only can wearing your glasses on top of the head lead to stretching and smudging on the glasses, but you increase your chances of dropping and breaking them. Looks like I will have to find a new place to keep my glasses while I’m on the go.
Luckily, Amcon carries a great supply of eyeglass chains! Eyeglass chains are perfect if you do not want to carry your case around but still want your glasses on hand. We offer several styles from earth tone beaded to bohemian style chains. And now (as of April 2017) you can buy them individually instead of in a set so you can get exactly what you want. We even have a Modern Chain Display Rack for you to show off all the chains your optical office has to offer.
Visiting the doctor can be a scary moment for children. They may not be familiar with the faces or environment and don’t know what to expect. At least I know this was definitely the case for me when I was a kid.
In fact, I remember my very first visit to the dentist, and I must admit I was slightly traumatized. This place was unfamiliar territory and there were strangers walking around wearing colorful funky “pajamas.” Even though everyone was very nice and attentive, I cried and begged my mom to take me home. However, once the nurse opened this mysterious drawer and pulled out a butterfly finger puppet, this whole visit did not seem so bad. Even though it was just a little toy, I was no longer afraid and even looked forward to coming back.
With that in mind, if children are part of your clientele, having toys they can play with (or even take home) could be extremely beneficial for your practice in terms of making the patient’s visit as comfortable as possible. Dr. Gary S. Schwartz mentions in his book, “The Eye Exam: A Complete Guide” that having toys in the office can be very handy during children’s appointments. Having toys can show that the doctor is “fun and, therefore, not someone to be feared (16).”
Amcon carries over a dozen fun and playful items that can be used as a source of comfort and entertainment for the young patients at your office. Stretchy frogs, smiley poppers, and, my personal favorite, animal finger puppets are just a few. We even carry children’s books that center around wearing glasses. (“Banana Bobby Gets Bifocals” and “Randy Kazandy, Where are Your Glasses?” ), and a silly singing puppet to distract your youngest patients. Check out these items in our Kid’s Corner and bring some fun to your office!
Source: Schwartz, Gary S. “Examining Children.” The Eye Exam: A Complete Guide. Thorofare, NJ: SLACK, 2006. 15-16. Print.
Amblyopia, commonly known as “lazy eye”, is the most common effect of visual impairment among children. In fact, according to the National Eye Institute, two to three out of every 100 children are affected by this disorder (National Eye Institute). However, the good news is that it can be treated through occlusion therapy.
The therapy of usingof eye patches has been known to be an extremely successful treatment of improving the vision of the weaker eye. Without getting too technical, wearing an eye patch on the stronger eye for a duration of time forces the weaker eye to invigorate vision. The only challenges are finding a comfortable patch and one that can easily fit over eyeglasses, but luckily Amcon has the solution!
Amcon has recently introduced over the lens “Paddle Patches” and “Corner Patches.” Both categories of patches are washable, durable, and an economical and comfortable alternative to other less appealing patches. And not only are the paddle and corner patches comfortable, they are also fashionable! Both patches come with a variety of vibrant colors to choose from, and the corner patches even come in patterns of camo, chevron, and pink polka dots! Patching may not be all fun and games but with our over the lens patches you will be able to do it in comfort and in style!
Have you ever wanted to just log in and pay an invoice or look and see if an order has been shipped yet?
Now you can! Both of these are features, along with much more, of our new FREE customer payment portal. This portal is independent of our web site. You do not need an online account us to access the payment portal.
To access the portal, just go to http://paynow.amconlabs.com/. We have already set up most of our customers info, so all you need to do is use the forgot password to get your log in. All you need is your full Amcon account number (9 digits long) and the email address where your invoices are being sent. If you’re not set up, reach out to your sales rep or firstname.lastname@example.org and they will get you set up and ready to log in!
Our portal has 6 areas for you to use.
The first is Account Information. Here you can see where your bills are going, year to date sales and the previous year’s sales, outstanding balance and past due amount (if applicable). This should give you a good snap shot of your account’s status with Amcon.
Next, we have View Transactions. This will show you all open invoices that you have with us, you can even click on the invoice and see details of what is on the invoice, tracking number, etc.
Now for the biggest feature, the Pay Account feature. Here you have the ability to pay full invoices. You have the ability to either pay one full invoice or as many as you like at one time. Just select the invoice(s) that you would like to pay, the next page will ask you for the credit card info and to confirm your billing address. Then you can submit it and you will receive a confirmation number and an email. Within a few minutes, the payment should be posted to your account!
Next, we have the Open Orders. Here you can see all open orders (whether they are new or backorders). You can see what is on the order and is still awaiting shipping.
Have you ever been getting ready to place an order and cannot remember what you ordered last time? Now you will be able to see everything you have ordered in the current year and the previous year using the Purchase History. This way we can keep track of what you have ordered and need to order again!
And finally, we have a Reset Password feature that allows you to be completely in control of your portal access. Amcon does suggest a password of at least 8 characters long.
Have you ever wanted an electronic copy of each new invoice? By signing up for E-Invoices, you will be emailed a copy of your invoice the day after you are invoiced. This is the quickest and greenest way of getting your invoices. All invoices have tracking numbers, this way you can make sure your order is on its way!
For more information about our portal or Go Green go here.
Amcon Email Specials
Did you know that Amcon sends out an email blast every week with our Item of the Week and features some of the products on the bi-monthly sales flyer? If you’re not getting these emails you are missing out! Be the first to know about our special offers and sales by signing up for our email blasts. Contact your Amcon sales rep today to get set up!
Soon all the little goblins and ghouls will be out prowling for treats. Candy is usually the Halloween mainstay for giveaways, but there is no reason why you can’t switch it up by offering something other than a sugary treat.
One customer recently ordered a bunch of our eyeball poppers. She said the kids love them, and she gives them out during the whole month of October. The boys, she remarked love the poppers, and the girls like the eyeball rings that come in assorted colors. What a great, inexpensive treat that the kids will remember!
Since Halloween is becoming increasingly popular for adults, we also have something for them. Our Simply Kleen cloths now come in a bright orange color. We have black cloths in our Soft as Silk line and the new Textured Floral cloth is available in orange. If you’re a contact lens wearer we also have new bright orange flat packs to store the contacts in.
In 2013, the FDA approved a new device for “people living with blindness due to severe to profound retinitis pigmentosa”. It is called The “Argus II Retinal Prosthesis System (“Argus II”)” and is basically a “bionic eye”. According to secondsight.com, Argus II “is the world’s first approved device intended to restore some functional vision for people suffering from blindness. Authorized by Federal (U.S.) law to provide electrical stimulation of the retina to induce visual perception in blind patients with severe to profound retinitis pigmentosa and bare light or no light perception in both eyes.”
Amcon Sales Representative Lisa has a friend who’s father will be one of just 40 people worldwide to receive this surgery. Bob gradually lost his sight as a young adult. The implant will not give him full sight, but it anticipated that he would be able to see shapes (i.e. doorways, his plate on a table & a person standing directly in-front of him).
So, how does this bionic eye work? In healthy eyes, photoreceptors (rods and cones) of the retina send impulses to the brain and the brain “decodes” them into images. When these photoreceptors aren’t functioning, this process cannot take place, leaving the individual blind. Argus II bypasses the photoreceptors by using a mini video-camera mounted into a pair of eyeglasses. The information is sent to an antenna in the implant, which produces the impulse and sends the information to the brain. (Source: http://www.secondsight.com/how-is-argus-r-ii-designed-to-produce-sight-en.html)
This is the “most clinical experience of any retinal prosthesis ever developed”. It is hoped that this device can eventually help hundreds, or thousands of people across the globe.
Did you know that 4 out of 5 (80%) of the world’s blind would be able to see if they had access to an eye exam or glasses? The World Sight Day Challenge is an effort to raise funds and help these individuals get the proper eye care.
For every regular-priced order of $100 or more placed October 13th, Amcon will donate $10 to Optometry Giving Sight.