It’s natural to be squeamish about having someone put an instrument near your eyes. But an eye exam is essential to your overall health and should be done regularly.
Now that states have reopened health care access, optometry practices can offer patients essential routine and urgent care. Learn about new protocols in place to keep you safe.
How to Schedule Your Appointment
To shop for groceries and book your annual family doctor appointment is relatively easy. Scheduling a comprehensive eye exam may be less intuitive, but vitally important.
Without a regular visit to the optometrist, vision problems could go undetected and untreated. That is particularly true for children whose eye health and vision are closely linked to academic achievement and social interactions. Undiagnosed vision issues can lead to misdiagnosis of ADHD, dyslexia, or behavioral problems without ever addressing the root problem and negatively impact a child’s ability to thrive in school and life.
What to Expect at Your Appointment
When you visit a trusted optometrist – comprehensive eye care and vision services, they will review your vision and general health. It includes a complete family history, current medications, and dietary supplements.
During your eye examination, the doctor will use a range of lights and instruments to carefully examine the internal structures, surface, and back of your eyes. The doctor might use eye drops to dilate your pupils to get a better view of your eye. It will allow them to thoroughly assess your eye health and provide you with the best care. That will make your eyes a little blurry and sensitive to light for several hours following the exam.
Only doctors of optometry and ophthalmology have the medical training to conduct comprehensive eye and vision examinations. These tests will detect many health and visual issues that often go undetected by vision screening programs.
What to Bring to Your Appointment
Current copies of your medical and vision insurance cards will make the process smoother. Having any prescriptions needed for future eye exams or contact lens fittings is also a good idea.
Bringing your child to their appointment will help them become more comfortable with the experience and can also give you a chance to discuss any concerns you have. If they are nervous or unsure of what will be done, you can reassure them by explaining the purpose of the exam and how their vision is tested.
During the eye exam, your optometrist will use eye drops to dilate your child’s pupils. It enables the visualization of the retina, a layer of light-sensitive cells covering the back of the eye. It is often the first time that severe health conditions like diabetes and high blood pressure are detected. That is why scheduling and attending regular eye appointments is so important.
What to Expect After Your Appointment
Getting a comprehensive eye exam from an optometrist or ophthalmologist is essential to ensure the health of your eyes and vision. Please don’t rely solely on school vision screenings, as they may not detect all issues that can affect your eyesight. Taking the time to see a doctor for a complete exam can help identify and address potential problems early on.
In addition to evaluating the visual acuity of your child’s eyes, other preliminary tests may include the evaluation of depth perception, color vision, peripheral (side) image, and how the pupils respond to light. A refraction is performed to determine the required lens power to correct refractive errors such as myopia, hyperopia, or astigmatism.
To determine the exact prescription needed for your eyesight, an optometrist may use a retinoscope – a handheld lighted instrument – and a set of lenses placed in front of your eyes. This test ensures that you have the most accurate and comfortable vision possible. After the refraction, your child can select a pair of glasses that look great and fit properly and offer lens enhancements to make their life easier.