Even if you don’t wear glasses, it is important to your overall health to have regular eye examinations. Young, healthy people may only need to see an optometrist every two years. However, older people and those with chronic illnesses, like diabetes, should have a comprehensive eye examination every year. Here is what you can expect when you have your eyes examined.
Comprehensive Eye Examinations
An optometrist can play an important role in both your eye health and your overall health. Along with catching eye diseases which can reduce your eyesight or cause blindness, they often see symptoms of other diseases when they examine the eyes and notice changes in its blood vessels. Diseases like high blood pressure, diabetes, and thyroid dysfunction directly affect the eyes, so they can sometimes be detected during eye examinations.
Gathering Medical History
When you first go in for an examination, you will be asked questions concerning your medical history (including any chronic conditions you may have), past eye problems, and your family history of eye conditions. Your eyes will then be measured and scanned so the optometrist can review information about your eyes before he greets you. The measurements can tell him or her how well your eyes focus, and screens for diseases like glaucoma. Digital retinal photography is used to examine the health of your eyes.
Screening for Diseases
In addition to the previous glaucoma screening, the optometrist in Clarkson will do more tests to check the condition of your eyes and screen for cataracts, macular degeneration, and diabetic retinopathy. Macular degeneration can cause blindness and is often inherited, which is why it is important for your medical history to be checked. If you’re a diabetic, your retinas can be affected if your blood sugar levels are out of control, which can lead to blindness.
If evidence of undiagnosed medical conditions is found, such as high blood pressure, diabetes, or thyroid dysfunction, the optometrist will recommend you schedule a medical exam with your physician. They will usually send their findings via the digital retinal images so your doctor is aware of them. The images will also be discussed and shown to you to help you understand why you need to see a medical doctor.
You will need to read the eye chart for the optometrist so they can check your distance vision. This will help them determine if you need corrective lenses to see up close, which is farsightedness, or at a distance, which is nearsightedness. They will also check near vision to find out if you have presbyopia and need bifocals or progressive lenses to improve your ability to read papers, books, or a computer screen without needing to lift or lower your head.
If you need corrective lenses, you can then select eyeglass frames at the optometrist’s office or discuss getting contacts if you’d rather not wear glasses. By getting your eyes examined regularly, you can catch eye problems and many other medical problems early so they can be treated and have your eyesight remain healthy.