An eye exam is an important part of maintaining good eye health, but it can also provide valuable information about a person's overall health and well-being. In fact, an eye exam can detect a wide range of health conditions that may not be apparent during other types of medical exams. Here are some of the benefits of an eye exam beyond vision correction:
An eye exam can help detect and manage chronic conditions such as diabetes, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol. These conditions often have no symptoms in the early stages, but can cause serious health problems if left unchecked. An eye exam can help identify these conditions early on, allowing for timely treatment and better management of the condition.
An eye exam can help detect and manage eye injuries and emergencies, such as a detached retina or a foreign object in the eye. Early detection and treatment of these conditions can help prevent serious vision loss.
According to the American Optometric Association a vision screening comprises of only 4% of a comprehensive eye exam. And this statistic becomes even more relevant when adding that the College of Optometrists in Vision Development say that the majority of vision problems are not related to "20/20 vision". There are a multitude of reasons why a child or adult may have vision that is not meeting their needs, from simple refractive error to problems with eye movements, eye teaming, and visual processing among many others.
An eye exam can sometimes detect brain tumors and other neurological conditions, such as multiple sclerosis or stroke. This is because the eye is connected to the brain through a series of nerves and blood vessels, and changes in the eye can be an early sign of a problem in the brain.
An eye exam can also detect other health conditions such as thyroid problems, autoimmune disorders, and even certain types of cancer. For example, an eye exam can detect changes in the blood vessels in the eye that may indicate the presence of cancer.
In addition to these benefits, an eye exam can also help identify vision problems that may be affecting a person's daily life, such as difficulty reading or driving at night. By identifying and addressing these problems early on, an eye exam can help improve a person's quality of life and overall well-being.
It is recommended that adults have an eye exam every few months to every two years, depending on their age, overall health, and risk factors for vision problems. Children should have their eyes examined at least once between the ages of three and five, and again before starting school. By scheduling regular eye exams, people can take an important step towards maintaining good eye health and overall well-being.
If you would like a thorough evaluation of your eye health and its function, schedule an eye exam with your eye doctor.