Even though you may think you have a clear vision, only a complete and regular eye exam can guarantee your eye health.
A visit to your optometrist should help you evaluate your vision and your eye health. The following will help you better understand each of the tests performed during your visit with your optometrist.
Visual acuity test: The Snellen chart helps measure your ability to see small details clearly from both near and far distances.
Refraction: Tests your eye strength. Refraction helps identify the presence of myopia (nearsightedness), hyperopia (farsightedness), astigmatism (warped vision due to corneal irregularities) and/or presbyopia (diminished focussing ability due to age) as well as calculate an appropriate prescription.
Keratometry: Measuring the curvature of the eye's surface is a crucial test for fitting contact lenses and is important for detecting glaucoma.
Eye movement: Evaluating how well both eyes are aligned or coordinated when working together and individually is important. Adequate muscular synergy allows for stereoscopic vision.
Help us protect your vision! Visit your optometrist regularly in order to prevent losing your eyesight. Distinct testing is required to evaluate ocular health.
Tonometry: Measuring the fluid pressure in the eye is an important test in detecting glaucoma.
Peripheral vision: Evaluating your peripheral vision is important in the detection of neurological and retinal diseases.
Corneal topography: This provides the most detailed information about the curvature of the cornea. It is useful in evaluating and correcting astigmatism, monitoring corneal diseases, detecting irregularities in the corneal shape and measuring for contact lenses.
Dilated retinal exam: Dilatation of the eyes with the use of drops enables the Optometrist to obtain a much better view of your retina, optic nerve and vessels in the back of your eye. From this simple exam, the Optometrist is able to gather a lot of important information. In fact, some systemic diseases such as hypertension and diabetes are first discovered during a dilated eye exam and must be correctly diagnosed in order to be properly treated.
Retinal photography: Allows your optometrist to keep a permanent recorded image of your retinas for later comparison. This can assist in the detection of ocular diseases that have no visual symptoms.
Presbyopia is a vision condition in which the crystalline lens of the eye loses its flexibility. This results in the patient having difficulty focusing on close objects. Adults usually begin experiencing blurred vision from close up in their 40s, such as when reading or working at the computer. There's no getting around it — this happens to everyone at some point in life, even those who have never had a problem with their vision before.
Symptoms and Treaments:
Some signs/symptoms of presbyopia include the tendency to hold reading materials at arm’s-length, blurred vision at normal reading distance and eye fatigue, along with headaches when attempting to perform work from up-close. Eyewear, contact lenses and surgery can help patients with presbyopia deal with their failing vision
Myopia is a vision problem experienced by nearly one-third of the population. Nearsighted people have difficulty seeing and reading at a distance, but can see up-close.
Symptoms and Treatments
Nearsighted people often have headaches or suffer from eyestrain, they may also squint or feel fatigued when driving or playing sports. Nearsightedness can be corrected with glasses, contact lenses or refractive surgery. Depending on the vision problem, they may need to wear glasses or contact lenses all the time, or only when they need to see at a distance like when driving, looking at a chalkboard or watching a movie. A nearsighted prescription has a negative number.
Hyperopia is a common vision problem which affects about a quarter of the population. Farsighted people can see distant objects very well but have difficulty seeing objects that are up close.
Symptoms and Treatments
Farsighted people occasionally have headaches or suffer from eyestrain and may squint or feel fatigued when performing work at close range. Farsightedness can be corrected with glasses or contact lenses. Patients may either be required to wear their glasses or contact lenses at all times or only when reading, working at a computer or other activities from up-close. A farsighted prescription has a positive number.
Astigmatism is the most common vision problem caused when the front surface of the eye (cornea) or lens inside the eye is slightly irregular in shape which results in blurred vision at all distances. Astigmatism may accompany nearsightedness or farsightedness.
Symptoms and Treatments
Sometimes uncorrected astigmatism can give headaches or cause eyestrain and distort or blur vision at all distances. Almost all levels of astigmatism can be optically corrected with properly prescribed and fitted eyeglasses or contact lenses.
Sitting too close to the television will damage your eyes.
FALSE There is no evidence whatsoever that your distance from a television affects your eyes or vision in any way. However, if your child frequently has a front row seat, he or she may be nearsighted. Yearly eye examinations will detect this and prevent long term problems.
Eating carrots improves your vision.TRUE Carrots are rich in vitamin A, which is essential for sight. Vitamin A is abundantly used by retinal photoreceptors enabling them to catch light and engage in the vision process.
Drinking alcohol affects your vision.TRUE Even a small quantity of alcohol will seriously affect your vision. Right from the first drink, your peripheral vision shrinks. Alcohol also blurs your vision, interferes with visual reflexes and decreases night vision.
Eating habits have no impact on your vision.
FALSE A study has shown that a diet high in fat increases the risk of blindness. Eating foods with higher levels of saturated fats and cholesterol increases your chances of being affected by macular degeneration by 80%!
My myopia will disappear as I age when I become presbyopic.FALSE Although your distance prescription may change over time, presbyopia is a separate issue from myopia and adds itself to any condition that already exists. Seeing as presbyopia is caused by the aging of the eye, everyone is affected by it whether they have eyesight issues or not.
Laser pointers are dangerous for the eye.
TRUE If the laser beam is directed in your eye, a permanent image will imprint in your eye that might affect your vision, especially under poor lighting or at nightfall.