3D Printing for the visually impaired

Download PDF

What is 3D printing?

3D printing is the creation of three dimensional solid objects from digital files. It’s achieved by using an additive process, where successive layers of material are ‘printed’ until the entire object is created.

3D printing to teach the visually impaired

Similar to Braille, a writing system of raised dots that can be read by touch, 3D printing can help the visually impaired learn.

solar-system-11111_640

Source: Pixabay.com

3D printing the universe

To bring the universe to the visually impaired, a team of scientists and educators from NASA have developed a program in which they intend to use 3D printing to teach astronomy and astrophysics in every day classrooms.

It can be difficult to imagine the complexity of the universe, without being able to see the different objects. With the use of 3D printing this project will allow many visually impaired people to be able to feel what each part of the universe would be like. The aim of the project is to develop a long-term solution for bringing visually impaired students the wonders of the universe.
man-144378_1280

Source: Pixabay.com

3D printing the human body

3D printing has previously been used to create educational teaching materials for the visually impaired. Many school children have the use of books to learn about the human body, and most of the books will include a huge variety of illustrations to help assist the children understand different things. With the use of 3D printing the same teaching methods can be applied.

Rather than having a range of illustrations in the book, a selection of 3D printed bodies are in the book. The four different bodies show skin, muscle, bones and the different organs. These can assist a visually impaired person to understand more about the different components of the body.

Our Digital Eye Strain infographic

Download PDF

Digital-Eye-Strain-Infographic

Digital eye strain is a problem that is becoming more and more prevalent as we move further into the digital age. However, many of us are still unaware of the problems caused by digital devices, as well as what the symptoms are for digital eye strain.

Harmful blue light is emitted by the screens of many modern technologies – laptops, phones, tablets and LED TVs – as it carries further and is brighter. However, it can damage your eyes after long periods of time, giving rise to the symptoms of digital eye strain.

Many of us experience symptoms of digital eye strain, such as headaches or tired and blurry eyes after a long day in the office, but so few of us know what the underlying cause is.

So to help, we’ve produced this infographic. Not sure how many hours a day you are looking at screens? Follow the lines to get your diagnosis. Not sure if you fall into the remit for digital eye strain? Follow the lines to see if you do.

Adlens Interface are designed with yellow tinted lenses to help reduce the amount of harmful blue light that enters your eyes, reducing the symptoms of digital eye strain and allowing you to be free from the pain.

Are Halloween contact lenses safe?

Download PDF

What are costume lenses?

Costume contact lenses, otherwise known as fashion or cosmetic contact lenses, are lenses that can change eye color, shape or style. These lenses are very popular for cosmetic use or fancy dress outfits, particularly during Halloween.

Where can you buy costume contact lenses? Many fancy dress shops and online retailers stock a large variety of costume lenses; however, unless they can give you prescription costume lenses, they are not safe. In the United States, it is illegal to sell colored contact lenses without a prescription, as all contact lenses are medical devices according to the FDA. You can alternatively buy a variety of costume contact lenses from your local ophthalmologist. This will always require an eye test and although this is more costly, it is the safest way to buy costume lenses. What happens in the eye test? During an eye test your ophthalmologist will most importantly measure your eyes in order to give you contact lenses which are the correct size, asses your lifestyle in order to decide if you are a suitable candidate for contact lenses (some people who work in dusty conditions, have dry eyes or allergies may not be suited), inform you of how to apply your lenses and how long to wear them, and finally give you proper aftercare instructions. What injuries can the lenses cause? Problems which can be caused by costume contact lenses include; scratches to the eye, cuts and sores in the protective layer of the iris and pupil, bacterial infections and corneal abrasions and ulcers. Some of these injuries can require serious medical help and could even lead to surgery or loss of vision. In order to avoid this you should have an eye test for all contact lenses, in order to get the correct fit for your eyes. Contact lens safety Regardless of if you are wearing costume lenses for cosmetic reasons, or prescription lenses for health reasons, you should always remember; if a lens looks damaged or torn - do not put it in your eye. You should not wear lenses in the shower or to swim with and do not rinse your lenses or store them in tap water - always use the correct contact lens solution. It can also be harmful to sleep in lenses and finally do not share contact lenses.

Source: Pixabay.com

Where can you buy costume contact lenses?

Many fancy dress shops and online retailers stock a large variety of costume lenses; however, unless they can give you prescription costume lenses, they are not safe. In the United States, it is illegal to sell colored contact lenses without a prescription, as all contact lenses are medical devices according to the FDA.

You can alternatively buy a variety of costume contact lenses from your local ophthalmologist. This will always require an eye test and although this is more costly, it is the safest way to buy costume lenses.

What happens in the eye test?

During an eye test your ophthalmologist will most importantly measure your eyes in order to give you contact lenses which are the correct size, asses your lifestyle in order to decide if you are a suitable candidate for contact lenses (some people who work in dusty conditions, have dry eyes or allergies may not be suited), inform you of how to apply your lenses and how long to wear them, and finally give you proper aftercare instructions.

What injuries can the lenses cause?

Problems which can be caused by costume contact lenses include; scratches to the eye, cuts and sores in the protective layer of the iris and pupil, bacterial infections and corneal abrasions and ulcers. Some of these injuries can require serious medical help and could even lead to surgery or loss of vision. In order to avoid this you should have an eye test for all contact lenses, in order to get the correct fit for your eyes.

Contact lens safety

Regardless of if you are wearing costume lenses for cosmetic reasons, or prescription lenses for health reasons, you should always remember; if a lens looks damaged or torn – do not put it in your eye. You should not wear lenses in the shower or to swim with and do not rinse your lenses or store them in tap water – always use the correct contact lens solution. It can also be harmful to sleep in lenses and finally do not share contact lenses.

But, enjoy Halloween!

But after all this, it is important to remember the true meaning of Halloween: candy! So enjoy Halloween, and try not to get too much of a sugar-hangover.

What is amblyopia?

Download PDF

What is amblyopia?

Amblyopia – also commonly referred to as ‘lazy eye’ – is a disorder associated with sight. It affects between 1 and 5% of the population. Although many think that amblyopia is a result of something wrong with the eye, it is actually caused by the brain. It sometimes occurs when visual signals from the eye do not reach the brain for a sustained period of time. Amblyopia can also occur when the brain inactivates the visual processing of one eye, in order to prevent double-vision, which can occur in certain conditions, such as strabismus.

Amblyopia often occurs during the formative years of childhood. The chances of being successfully treated increase the earlier it is detected – especially if detected before the age of 5.

eye patch kid

Source: commons.wikimedia.org

Treatment of amblyopia

The treatments for amblyopia involve training the brain to pay more attention to the images received from the amblyopic, or weaker, eye so that the vision in that eye becomes stronger. This is usually achieved through the use of corrective glasses, eye patches, eye drops or even surgery. Sometimes a combination of these may be needed.

Glasses

Corrective glasses are prescribed to those who have amblyopia that is caused by severe refractive errors. These corrective glasses allow both eyes to be used at the same time, but still ‘teach’ the brain to pay attention to the weaker eye.

Eye patches

Eye patches may be more difficult to get used to, for both aesthetic and practical reasons. They can be especially challenging to get children to use. However, after adjusting to the eye patch, it becomes normal. Eye patches do not have to be worn all the time, they only need between 2-6 hours a day to be successful. It is placed over the stronger eye in order to improve the strength of the weaker eye.

Surgery

Surgery may be necessary if your amblyopia does not improve with any of the other treatments. It can also be carried out if amblyopia is caused by a droopy eyelid or cataract formation. The procedure involves loosening or tightening the muscles that are causing the eye to be ‘lazy’. Whilst it is an invasive procedure, it is generally very safe and effective.

Fashion and Tech: the perfect fit

Download PDF

As wearable tech becomes more and more commonplace, it’s only natural that we would want it to be more fashionable. After all, just because its technology doesn’t mean it can’t be stylish.

apple watch

Source: Pixabay.com

When we think of wearable tech, we often think of the main ones – Apple Watch, Google Glass, or even our own Adlens Adjustable eyewear. But tech is expanding fast, and fashion is there to meet it. Everyone from big brands to small independent clothing labels want to get a slice of the wearable tech market.

Big brands

One of the biggest brands that is keen to embrace wearable tech is Ralph Lauren. Recently they launched a smart sports t-shirt – the Polotech. Ralph Lauren is quick to claim that the Polotech shirt is “the next evolution of wearable technology”, it works with your iPhone to give you real-time workout data; everything from heart rates and breathing depth, to balance and stress levels.

Innovative tech

However, smaller brands seem to be keener to embrace more innovative wearable tech. One smaller company that designs more avant-garde wearable tech is CuteCircuit, a London-based clothing company that counts Nicole Scherzinger, Katy Perry and Ellie Goulding amongst its celebrity fan-base. They recently designed a dress called The Galaxy Dress. It contains 24,000 full color pixels, which measure 2x2mm each and are totally flat. It is the largest wearable display in the world. Each circuit is hand embroidered on a layer of silk so that they can stretch, so the fabric moves like normal silk. It is currently the center piece of the “Fast Forward: Inventing the Future” exhibit at the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago.

Couture tech

Even couture fashion houses are keen to embrace wearable tech. During London Fashion  Week 2015, during the House of Holland show, front-row guests were given rings designed by Henry Holland himself that contained small chips – integrated NFC technology – that allowed them to purchase items from the show by holding the ring close to the pieces, which contained payment receiver tags. The order was then relayed backstage, where the pieces were then bagged up while the guest continued to shop and given to them as they left the show.

The Vision Challenge

Download PDF

The DO School

Innovation is at the heart of Adlens and, as a part of our social soul, we want to help inspire and empower people to challenge the current global barriers to eye care. We recently partnered with The DO School, to set a challenge to students at the University of Oxford to do just that.

The Vision Challenge

Many people in India, especially those in rural areas or from lower-income families, do not have access to eye care. Without eye care, they find it hard to participate in education and employment. Access to simple, affordable and adjustable eyewear could improve their lives dramatically.

Our challenge to the students was: how could we bring this affordable eye care to India?

The Results

After an intensive three-week session, the participants presented us with two ideas, both of which they had prototyped and tested in India.

The Cinema Pilot

The first idea focused around cinemas. In India, movie screenings are a focus point of social and cultural life in the community and students identified them as an opportunity to raise awareness about eye care.

Through local partners, the team spread the message of affordable and adjustable eye care through free screenings in mobile cinemas, raising awareness among rural communities.

The School Pilot

School children in rural India have very limited access to eye care. Access to eye care is very important for them as vision impairments will hinder their ability to learn.

Adjustable eyewear also provides an engaging tool for teachers to teach their classes about the need for vision correction.

The team designed a teaching kit that would incorporate our self-adjusting glasses, in order to teach basic physics and biology to students – the youngest of whom were in the eighth grade. This allowed them to work with a very practical learning tool, as well as screen the children for vision correction.