Eye Examination

Perhaps you see well and do not feel you have any need for an Eye Examination. You could understand needing an Eye Exam if you had trouble seeing signs, especially when driving at night, until you were right up on them. But without any vision complaints, Why do you need an Eye Exam?

After all, are you young and healthy without any vision complaints? But are you on birth control pills? Have you ever contracted a sexually transmitted disease? Are you over 40? Perhaps you have been noticing that your near vision has decreased and that small print or the computer font is not clear. You think buying over the counter reading glasses is good enough. Are you over 50? Perhaps you have one or more of the most common metabolic disorders affecting people today such as:

  • Hypertension
  • Diabetes
  • Heart Disease
  • Thyroid Disease
  • Perhaps you have a neurological problem such as:

  • Multiple Sclerosis
  • Myasthenia Gravis
  • Perhaps you have an Autoimmune condition such as:

  • Crohn’s disease
  • Rheumatoid Arthritis
  • Lupus
  • Sjogren’s Syndrome
  • Ankylosing Spondylitis
  • Sarcoid
  • Have you had a history of breast cancer, colon cancer, or melanoma? Did you suffer an Eye Injury ever in your life? Do you work in a hazardous environment with exposure to chemicals, metallic fragments or welding?

    Are you on multiple medications? Do you have allergies? Do you work in an environment that involves a large population of people in a constrained space such as a school, hospital or prison? Do you work outside in the sun most days?

    Perhaps you have no visual complaints, but you suffer from itchy eyes. Does your eyes burn, tear, or become red? Do you have a sandy, gritty feeling in your eyes? Are you Photophobic? Do you suffer visual disturbances like loss of Peripheral Vision, especially before a migraine headache? Do you suffer from frequent headaches?

    Do your eyes bother you after prolonged reading? Does one of your eyes turn in or out? Do you see double?

    Why do you need an Eye Examination?

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    The fact is that you do need an Eye Examination because it is part of the preventative maintenance you should be doing on yourself just like routine dental and medical exams.

    Why do you need an Eye Examination? Because of all of the reasons brought up above and more. You may have thought to yourself that the questions and points discussed above were random and unrelated, but the fact is that your eyes are deeply affected by whatever is going on with the rest of your body.

    For instance, sexually transmitted diseases can cause multiple inflammatory conditions of your eyes such as Uveitis or Keratitis. Age can bring with it degenerative Eye Diseases or Eye Problems like Age-Related Macular Degeneration, Cataracts, Dry Eyes, Glaucoma, Presbyopia, and Ptosis. Age can also bring metabolic disorders like Hypertension, Diabetes, Thyroid Disease or Heart Disease.

    These metabolic conditions can in turn put your eyes at risk for Eye Diseases or Eye Problems such as Eye Stroke, Diabetic Retinopathy, Graves Eye Disease, or Glaucoma.

    There are a number of Cranial Nerves that control functions in your eyes such as Cranial Nerve II (Optic Nerve, which helps you to see!), Cranial Nerves III, IV and VI (which make your eyes move and pupils react), Cranial V (which gives your Cornea and Conjunctiva sensitivity) and Cranial VII (which controls your lids).

    It is no surprise that any neurological problem (like Multiple Sclerosis or Myasthenia Gravis) can affect your eyes. Also any condition that directly affects those nerves can impact your eyes such as Diabetes, Bell’s Palsy, or Glaucoma.

    Autoimmune conditions like those listed above can wreak havoc on your eyes and contribute to chronic inflammatory conditions like Dry Eyes, Keratitis, and Uveitis.

    But you protest and argue that you do not have any of these issues and have not had any problems with your eyes. Why do you need an Eye Examination?

    What if you had a history of cancer? Unfortunately, cancer can metastasize to the eye (in other words, spread to the eye). Worse yet, your eyes may give the first sign that you have cancer such as in the case of melanoma or even colon cancer. Did you know that radiation therapy for cancer could cause Cataracts?

    Perhaps you have no vision complaints and you are healthy, but you had an Eye Injury in the past. Did you know that an Eye Injury may cause structural damage to your eye that could put you at risk for Glaucoma years after the incident?Working in a hazardous environment could put your eyes at risk for Chemical Burn, Metallic Foreign Body, or Ultraviolet Corneal Burn. You need to get periodic Eye Exams to rule out any of these complications.

    Medications can put your eyes at risk for Dry Eyes, unspecified vision loss, Eye Stroke, or even Color Vision Deficiency. Allergies can make your eyes red and itchy. Also, working in close quarters with large populations can make Pink Eye very contagious.

    Did you know that migraines are a risk factor for Glaucoma? Thus, if you have symptoms of Photophobia or visual disturbances like loss of Peripheral Vision, then you should get an Eye Exam.

    If your eyes feel tired and strained by doing everyday tasks like reading or working on the computer, then you should get an Eye Exam to see if reading glasses may lighten the load on your focusing muscles.

    Still, you may feel like none of this may relate to you. You do not suffer from uncomfortable eyes or vision problems. You regularly go to the doctor and dentist and have no health problems whatsoever. Why do you need an Eye Examination?

    If you have never had an Eye Examination, there is the possibility that you may not have detected that one eye sees significantly worse than the other since the vision will be better with both eyes open. If this is the case, you may have Amblyopia. Amblyopia can affect your ability to play sports because of the reduced depth perception.

    Your depth perception can also be affected by Crossed Eyes or other eye movement imbalance like Strabismus or Nystagmus.

    Why do you need an Eye Exam? First, there are multiple Eye Diseases or Eye Problems that may not give you any symptoms but can be vision-threatening and only an Eye Exam can discover them. Next, uncomfortable eyes, even without any visual complaints, may point to a condition that requires treatment.

    In a nutshell, your eyes are the window to your body and the medications you use and the conditions that afflict your body can have a deep impact on your eyes.


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