While eyes may be the window to your soul, they also present a singular view into your body and, in particular, a look at blood vessels that’s more direct and clear than anywhere else on your body.
Beyond evaluating your vision, a comprehensive eye exam can reveal other health issues, things such as high cholesterol, high blood pressure, diabetes, and lupus, as well as serious eye conditions including macular degeneration and glaucoma.
Even if your vision is 20/20 and you’ve had no noticeable changes to your vision, regular eye exams are important to maintain overall health. Your risk for eye problems or other health issues increases as you get older, so expect eye exams more often as you age. As a general guideline, adults without other vision issues should have comprehensive eye exams on the following timeline:
If you wear glasses or contacts, or if a doctor or optometrist recommends more frequent testing, follow their advice.
Your pediatrician screens for common childhood eye conditions, such as crossed or lazy eyes, and you’ll be referred to an eye specialist if there are any issues. Typically, an eye exam before your child enters grade one is a good idea, to rule out vision issues as a barrier to learning. If there are no other vision issues, including family history, then an eye exam every year or two until age 20 is usually enough.
We’ve already seen how a comprehensive eye exam can reveal major issues with both your eyes and other diseases. In some cases, your eye test may be just as effective as a typical physical exam with a doctor. Having a second line of defense in your health care regimen is a bonus.
The best way to assure continued good health comes through prevention and early detection. This is true for systems in your body. When it comes to your eyes, it’s not just the serious conditions.
Regular adjustments to your corrective lens prescriptions can help you avoid eye strain and headaches, easing the burdens of everyday life. Even minor eyesight changes can add significant stress to your daily routine. Keeping on top of changes to your vision, even if it’s just the minor changes everyone experiences over time, gives you one less thing to worry about.
If you’re prone to worrying about aspects of your health, regular comprehensive eye exams are crucial, because many eye disorders have no symptoms at all until they progress. In some cases, once you have visual symptoms of a disease, permanent damage has already occurred.
I can’t overstate the importance of regular, comprehensive eye exams, even if you’ve got 20/20 vision with no other symptoms or irregularities. Chances are, your eye exam will find nothing, and with that result, you’ll have a few more carefree years. The chances of an unexpected health condition arising drop dramatically. Contact me at West Vision Care, by phone or online, and set up your comprehensive eye exam today.