Think 20/20 Vision Means You Don’t Need an Eye Exam? Think Again!
Don’t like going to the doctor? You’re not alone. However, taking care of your health now (before problems get worse) is one of the best gifts you can give both your present and future self!
Do you have 20/20 vision? While you may not have any apparent problems with your eyesight, you still need a regular eye exam.
Let’s get into what you need to know.
Why Do You Need An Eye Exam?
Even though your eyes may be relatively small compared to the rest of your body, they provide invaluable information about your overall health.
For example, comprehensive exams may be able to detect medical conditions including:
- high cholesterol
- high blood pressure
- lupus and other autoimmune diseases
- thyroid disease
- neck tumors
Moreover, they can also identify early stages of macular degeneration and glaucoma. Catching these problems earlier rather than later can help you avoid more severe consequences in your treatment.
Finally, an eye exam can reveal the subtle changes that may be happening to your eyes. Vision problems are not always apparent. The changes may be so slow that you don’t even realize how they are affecting you.
What Happens During An Eye Exam?
Eye exams are quick and painless. Similar to any other doctor appointment, you will answer general questions regarding your overall health, medical history, and medication.
The optometrist will ask you to read various letters from an eye chart through a series of lenses. This test will determine your vision. He or she may also administer other tests related to your peripheral vision, 3D vision, and color perception.
Doctors test for glaucoma by administering a puff of air near your eye or by using a device that skims your eye’s surface.
After the exam, the optometrist will review your results. You will also have the opportunity to ask any questions pertaining to your care. From there, depending on the results, you may be prescribed medication or provided a prescription for glasses.
How Frequently Do You Need An Exam?
It depends on your age and current situation The American Optometric Association recommends an exam every year. Young children should receive a comprehensive exam before entering school and then every year after that.
Of course, you may need more frequent visits if you have a family history of eye problems or you have chronic medical conditions that may increase your risk for developing issues.
Furthermore, you should always consult with your optometrist to determine the appropriate schedule for your needs.
How Much Will It Cost?
Many vision insurance policies cover part of your yearly comprehensive eye exams. They may also other benefits like discounts on prescriptions or glasses.
If you don’t have insurance, you can pay an out-of-pocket fee to the office. Some practices will negotiate with you depending on your financial situation.
That said, cost should not be a prohibitive factor. Untreated eye problems can become progressive- which translates to progressively more expensive the more you delay treatment.
How Else Can You Protect Your Eyes
Of course, going to the optometrist regularly is one of the best ways to detect problems and receive preventative care. However, there are several strategies you can also use to keep your eyesight in good shape.
You probably wear them at the beach, but you really should be wearing sunglasses any time you are outside. Ultraviolet radiation (UV rays) can create serious, permanent damage to your eyes.
Purchase a pair of sunglasses that offers 100% protection against UVA and UVB rays. Don’t just pull them out when the sun is bright. UV rays can be powerful in cloudy weather.
Stop Rubbing Your Eyes
Want to know one of the easiest ways to spread a preventable disease to yourself? It’s by failing to wash your hands- and then touching your eyes afterward.
If you must touch your eye, always make sure to wash your hands thoroughly with soap and warm water.
Eat A Nutritious Diet
We’ve all heard the adage about carrots and eyesight, but your eye health is so much more than just carrots!
You should make sure that you are getting a rounded diet full of minerals and nutrients like Vitamin C, Vitamin E, and zinc. You can achieve this via a diet concentrated in vegetables and fruits.
Finally, don’t forget your water intake! Dehydration can impact eyes because it can make it challenging for the body to produce tears. This problem can lead to symptoms associated with dry eyes.
Get Plenty of Sleep
If you needed yet another reason to get a good night’s sleep, consider your eyesight. Lack of sleep impacts your cognition on visual tasks (like driving or operating other machinery).
Furthermore, when you are tired, you are more likely to rub your eyes (because they are dry). The rubbing makes you more prone to diseases and other irritation. Get that shut-eye in!
Even if you have stellar 20/20 vision, you can still benefit from a routine eye exam. Remember that preventative health can be just as important as a medical intervention. It also tends to be more painless and cheaper!
At Cedar Park Vision, we pride ourselves on providing optimal care for our patients. We offer comprehensive exams in a comfortable & fun setting. Book an appointment with us today!