SAVE YOUR VISION: Why it’s important to get routine eye exams
March is Save Your Vision Month, when Lighthouse Guild joins a national effort to focus on the importance of making regular eye care a priority for a lifetime of healthy vision.
Did you know that more than 20 million Americans have some form of vision loss caused by eye diseases such as glaucoma and age-related macular degeneration? Many eye diseases strike without warning signs.
During Save Your Vision Month we are reminded that healthy lifestyle choices can influence good vision and eye health, as well as overall physical health.
Eye exams and early detection
Schedule regular comprehensive dilated eye exams at Lighthouse Guild—even if you think there’s nothing wrong with your eyes. Your eye doctor will test your vision using an eye chart, examine your eyes inside and out, and conduct tests that can indicate eye disease, such as measuring your eye pressure.
During a dilated eye exam, drops are placed in your eyes to dilate, or widen, the pupils so the retina and optic nerve at the back of each eye can be thoroughly examined for early signs of eye diseases. The front part of your eye and eye movement will also be examined.
If a vision-threatening eye disease is detected in its early stages, there’s a greater chance timely treatment can be prescribed, and vision loss prevented.
Eye doctors are also sometimes the first to identify other health conditions such as a potential stroke, diabetes or high blood pressure during an eye exam by noticing changes in the eye caused by these conditions.
Eye exam frequency
Based on your overall health, including your risk for eye and vision problems, your eye doctor will tell you how frequently you should have a dilated eye exam.
As a general guide, the American Optometric Association (AOA) recommends that if you are 60 or younger and have no eye or vision symptoms you should have an exam every two years, and that you should have an eye exam every year if you are 61 or older. If you have risk factors, such as diabetes, hypertension or a family history of eye disease at any age, your doctor may recommend more frequent exams.
It is important to note that if you have any symptoms of eye or vision problems, don’t wait for your regularly scheduled exam to make an appointment with your eye doctor.
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Take an important step toward saving your vision. Schedule a comprehensive dilated eye exam at Lighthouse Guild.
Lighthouse Guild’s full service Optometric and Low Vision Clinic: 212-769-6313
ColumbiaDoctors Ophthalmology’s Robert Burch Family Eye Center: 212-305-9535
Both conveniently located at 15 West 65th Street, New York, NY 10023