Comprehensive Eye Exams for the Entire Family
Eye exams are an important part of a complete physical. Eye “checks” provided during your routine physical are often not thorough enough and may not reflect the actual status of your eye health. Clear vision is also not a measure of eye health, as most eye diseases don’t manifest symptoms until the problem is to severe to benefit from intervention. Blurry eyesight can be a sign of anything from nearsightedness (myopia) to potentially blinding eye disease. Eye care associations such as the American Optometric Association and the American Academy of Ophthalmology recommend annual eye exams to patients with need for eyeglasses, or without need for eyeglasses if they have a family history of eye disease, diabetes, thyroid problems and hypertension. Annual eye examinations are specifically recommended for patients over 40 years of age, as this is the age range where one might benefit from early intervention should something be noticed by the doctor.
If blurry vision is detected and it is determined that it is the result of a refractive error (nearsightedness or myopia, farsightedness or hyperopia, or astigmatism) corneal reshaping therapy might be an option. Corneal reshaping therapy can be achieved surgically in adults, as in laser vision correction (LASIK, PRK) or non-surgically for children and adults with changing vision through one of several vision shaping treatments that fall under the label of Orthokeratology (orthok). Corneal refractive therapy (CRT), Vision Shaping Treatment (VST) are just two of several therapies that use rigid gas permeable medical devices to gently reshape the surface of the cornea of the eye while one sleeps. These options are particularly helpful when seeking to improve eyesight in children, and reduce change in vision, specifically myopia in children and may, in some cases reduce the risk of children with myopia advancing to high myopia.
Remember, the eyes are more than just the window to the soul, they are windows to the inside of your body. The eye is the only way a doctor can see living, functioning blood vessels by just viewing with a bright light and without surgical intervention. Often an eye exam will result in diagnosis of a medical condition that would otherwise be handled by a general physician, internist or specialist. This happens most often indiabetes and hypertension.
Children should have their eyes tested before the age of 4 with a complete eye exam and dilation, and be followed at least every 2 years unless they have a need foreyeglasses or a problem with the way the eyes function together (binocular vision problem), in which case they will be seen more frequently.
For further information, visit an eye doctor and myopia specialist near you.