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Latest treatment options and news about cataracts, dry eye syndrome and other eye care topics.

How Often Should You Have Your Eyes Examined?

by Damion Wasylow 24 May 2017 02:01 AM

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Most people wait far too long between eye exams. Many figure as long as their vision quality is “ok” and not adversely impacting quality of life, they can put off an eye exam a while longer. The trouble with that theory, however, is that many eye conditions progress without noticeable symptoms until it’s too late.

In addition to vision challenges, eye exams can uncover a variety of undiagnosed health issues throughout the body, some of which can be life-threatening, like brain tumors, diabetes and high cholesterol. That’s just part of the reason the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends regular eye exams.

Comprehensive eye exams should not be confused with vision screenings. Vision screenings are generally just quick visual acuity tests designed to detect fairly obvious vision problems. A comprehensive eye exam is much more inclusive, reviewing everything from peripheral vision and pupillary response to eye muscle strength and eye pressure, among other things.

The Mayo Clinic recommends the following cadence for regular eye exams:

Children 5 years and younger

Your pediatrician will look for common eye problems – lazy eye, crossed eyes, turned-out eyes. Assuming nothing substantive is obvious, a comprehensive eye exam can usually wait until between the ages of three and five.

Older children and teens

An eye exam is advisable prior to starting first grade. If everything is clear, follow up with exams every one to two years. 

Adults

Healthy adults with no outward symptoms of eye problems can generally follow this schedule based on your age:

  • In your 20s and 30s – every 5-10 years
  • In your 40s to mid-50s – every 2-4 years
  • In you mid-50s to mid-60s – every 1-3 years
  • After age 65 – every 1-2 years

Of course, comprehensive eye exams should be more frequent if you have known vision problems, a family history of eye disease or a chronic disease that may impact the eyes, like diabetes. For these patients, an annual exam should be the minimum. In some cases, every three to six months is advisable.

To schedule your comprehensive eye exam with North Florida Cataract Specialists and Vision Care, contact us today at 352-373-4300.

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