The Importance of Eye Exams
Health professionals recommend scheduling regular appointments with doctors and dentists, but do you know that yearly eye exams are also essential for taking care of your vision health and detecting any eye diseases early on?
Eye diseases can sometimes show no symptoms and can go unnoticed for a very long time. This is why regular eye exams are essential for a healthy lifestyle and for maintaining the ability to see. These eye exams include vision correction and identification of chronic diseases like glaucoma or diabetes, and for kids, these eye exams ensure their normal vision development.
5 Reasons Why Eye Health Is Important
When we are not facing any troubling symptoms, we tend to overlook the health of our eyes and skip an eye exam. However, being committed to your eye health is as essential as taking care of any other body part. Here are 5 reasons why your eye health is extremely important.
1. Eyes Are an Irreplaceable Asset:
You cannot grow back or regain your eyes once your vision is gone. Losing vision in both eyes is a devastating finding, but even if a person loses one eye, it can heavily impact depth perception, peripheral vision, and field of view.
2. You Might Not Discover Symptoms of an Eye Disease Until It Is Too Late:
Eye conditions such as glaucoma or age-related macular degeneration do not show their symptoms when they are in their earliest stages. However, taking care of eye health is essential to get ahead of these diseases so that they can be treated before they damage your eyes.
3. Eye Conditions Can Cause Extreme Discomfort:
Even if a person doesn’t have a serious eye disease, certain conditions like dry or itchy eyes can cause extreme discomfort.
4. Eye Health Is Linked to the Quality of Life:
The health of your eyes is directly related to the quality of your life, as eyes are important for reading, writing, performing daily tasks, etc. Taking care of your eyes is essential to avoid any mishaps that can affect your life.
5. Great Eye Vision Protects You From Injury:
People who do not wear glasses or contact lenses with a correct prescription are likely to be injured while moving around, working, or playing.
What Is the Importance of a Yearly Eye Exam
The Vision Health Initiative by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that 93 million American adults are highly at risk for vision loss, but only 50% of them actually visited an eye doctor in the past year. To preserve the vision of millions of people, it is recommended to get regular eye exams so that any critical and common eye diseases are detected and treated at an early stage.
A dilated eye exam is the best approach to check such diseases early on. This exam is a painless procedure in which the doctor gives some eye drops to dilate the pupil and then checks the eyes for vision problems and eye diseases.
This test can detect eye diseases even when they are not producing any warning signs. So even if you think that your eyes are healthy, you must get a yearly dilated eye exam.
A regular and comprehensive eyes exam, which includes pupil dilation, can detect progressive eye diseases such as:
1. Cataracts: Also known as clouding of the lens, cataracts are one of the leading causes of vision loss in the USA.
2. Glaucoma: Glaucoma is a group of eye diseases that causes blindness by damaging an optic nerve.
3. Diabetic Retinopathy: Diabetic retinopathy causes vision loss in people with diabetes. This disease affects the blood vessels present in the retina.
4. Age-Related Macular Degeneration: This disease is characterized by the breakdown of light-sensitive eye tissues.
How Often Should I Get an Eye Exam?
Typically, it is recommended to get a routine and comprehensive checkup of your eyes after every two years, especially for individuals between the ages of 6 to 20. In this age frame, vision changes are common, and those dealing with nearsightedness or farsightedness can have regular vision correction.
Individuals over the age of 60 must get an eye exam every year, as age-related eye diseases are very common in such people.
Furthermore, if you are frequently dealing with the following symptoms, you should get your eyes checked for any potential diseases.
· Eye floaters: These spots in your vision can usually be harmless, but they can also point toward medical conditions like hypertension.
· Flashing lights in the eye: These flashes of light can come and go. Repeated flashing lights in the eyes can, however, be a sign of an underlying health issue or eye disease.
· Blurry vision: Eyes are supposed to make the world look crystal clear, so if you notice even the slightest loss of vision, go visit your doctor immediately.
· Other health conditions: Serious medical conditions like hypertension, diabetes, and thyroid disease can also affect eye health. If you are dealing with these diseases, you must schedule regular eye exams to prevent the development of any complicated eye disease.
Importance of Eye Exams for Diabetics
People with diabetes have a high chance of developing diabetic retinopathy, which is an eye condition in which abnormal blood vessel growth in the retina can cause vision loss or blindness.
People with high blood sugar levels are not only at risk of diabetic retinopathy but also cataracts and macular degeneration. These diseases can destroy the central vision, but their early detection and treatment can preserve the vision.
Diabetic retinopathy is a highly preventable condition. But if the affected individual fails to get their eyes examined, they become late for any effective treatment. A yearly eye exam for diabetic patients is necessary to preserve their eye health and eyesight.
The number of visually impaired people in the USA is increasing every year. It is estimated that the number of blind people will be doubled by 2030 and triple by 2050. Such alarming numbers should be a source of concern for the general public and health practitioners, which is why taking care of your eyes and general health and getting regular medical checkups is important to improve your quality of life and prevent any risks of blindness or visual impairment.