There are some things that happen on an annual basis for many people around the world. Birthdays, check-ups with a doctor, Independence Day, and New Year’s Eve are examples of things that happen every 365 days. Something else that you should add to the annual rotation is an eye exam, and there are many reasons why.
One of the lesser known reasons to get annual eye exams is the ability of an eye exam to detect other health issues. There have been many cases of individuals finding out they had serious health conditions like high cholesterol, high blood pressure, diabetes, and even cancer during a routine eye exam. The old saying that “the eyes are the window to the soul” may need some editing to account for the eye’s ability to tell an even greater story of overall health. Optometrists are trained to notice anything out of the ordinary and can help detect some greater issues.
Another reason to schedule an annual eye exam is the growing development of myopia or nearsightedness. More and more children are developing myopia at early ages, and the reason this is a serious issue is that myopia can lead to more serious conditions like glaucoma, cataracts, and retinal detachment later in life. An optometrist is able to test for myopia and help to counteract it if caught early.
Glaucoma is another reason to check in with the optometrist annually. Glaucoma is very sneaky and usually is not detected until permanent vision loss has occurred. Glaucoma is caused by high pressure in the eye, and that pressure is only detectable through the tests run in a routine eye exam.
Vision screenings at school or at the local Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) office are not a substitute for an annual eye exam with an optometrist. The tests run in a vision screening do not identify any of the things discussed here. Keep your eyes healthy and seeing the world around you as well as they can for as long as they can by taking proactive measures to ensure their health and safety.