Dr. Jim Martin 10/29/2013

eye_exam-child-glasses.jpgThere is a common consensus among eye doctors that everyone should get eye exams on a regular basis in order to maintain optimal eye health and up-to-date prescriptions. These eye exams should include both an eye health evaluation and vision testing to find problems before they affect your lifestyle. If you're still not convinced, consider the following reasons that regular eye exams are so important.

Why Do I Need to have an Annual Eye Exam?

1) Health of The Eye

A comprehensive eye exam assesses a prescription or refractive error as well as how the eyes function separately and together. Many routine eye exams include the following tests:

  • Alignment. People can develop turned eyes or crossed eyes, which means that the two eyes may not be working together. This condition is known as strabismus and can result in weak depth perception and the inability to have perfect 20/20 vision.
  • Functionality. When two eyes do not work well together, people can develop issues with eyestrain and headaches that compromise any number of daily tasks, such as reading their smart phone or computer. This is particularly important for young children who may struggle in school due to these issues.

Focusing skills. After the age of 40, people have increasing difficulty focusing on their reading and computers. This is due to the normal aging of the eye and is called Presbyopia.

2) Changes in Glasses Prescription

Many people assume they can get by just fine with over-the-counter reading glasses; or that once they have a glasses prescription, they are set for life. Most individuals experience changes in their vision throughout their lives necessitating new eyeglass prescriptions. Regular eye exams include testing that assesses these changes so eye doctors can make changes to prescriptions as needed.

3) Update Contact Lens Prescriptions

On a similar note, contact lens users may experience vision or eye changes that require new prescriptions. Some users also find that a single type of contact lens does not suit their needs and preferences for their entire life. For example, soft contacts with a replacement schedule may work well for a while, but at any point, an individual may decide that rigid gas permeable (RGP) or extended wear contacts are a better fit. An experienced eye doctor can work with you to determine the contact lens type and prescription that is most appropriate for you at this time in your life.

4) Replacement of Eyewear

Even the best glasses and contact lenses do not last forever. It is important to get regular eye exams to ensure that you have eyewear that fits well and is appropriate for your lifestyle. There are new styles of glasses and new developments to prescription contacts every year. Take the time to review these new options on a regular basis.

5) Corneal Health of Contact Lens Wearers

There are any number of different problems that contact lens wearers can develop; from minor issues that stem from poor rinsing to serious issues such as loss of vision due to microbial keratitis. Problems can be connected to the frequency with which the lenses are changed, the type of lenses that are used (i.e. soft, rigid), wearer related factors (i.e. sharing lenses), and the cleaning systems used. It is best practice to review any issues that you have with your contacts during a routine eye exam to get them addressed in a timely manner.

When you are ready for an eye exam, contactBroome Optical in Amarillo, Texas. These Amarillo eye care professionals have been providing top-notch service to people in the Texas Panhandle and surrounding area for more than 80 years. Give them a call at (806) 355-5633 or use the contact form on this page to schedule your next appointment.

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