Who should get their eyes examined?
Everyone! Children need annual eye exams to check for normal vision development. Adults must have annual eye exams to make sure that their eyesight prescriptions have not changed. Annual exams are also vital because they can detect early stages of eye diseases and chronic systemic conditions.
What is an eye doctor looking for in an annual exam?
Optometrists are trained to check eye alignment, identify focusing issues and cataracts. In addition, optometrists look for:
- refractive errors
- eye tearing
- eye diseases such as glaucoma
- chronic issues such as diabetes and high cholesterol
Why aren’t vision screenings an acceptable substitute for a comprehensive annual eye exam?
Studies have shown that family physicians and pediatricians can miss important vision issues as compared to comprehensive exams performed by optometrists or ophthalmologists.
For example, a recent study found that 65 percent of the time, eye doctors were the first to detect high cholesterol. 20% of the time they were the first to detect diabetes, and 30% of the time, they were the first to detect hypertension. This early detection allowed for combined savings of $4.53 billion over two years