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Regular Checkups Can Save Your Vision!

A recent Harris poll commissioned by the American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO) found that although 64 percent of respondents reported having one or more vision problems, only 13 percent had an eye exam.

The poll respondents reported blurry or double vision, difficulty seeing at night, problems reading, seeing flashes of light and red, watery eyes – all possible indications of diseases that could lead to vision loss or blindness.

We are all prone to develop eye problems as we age. Symptoms often appear gradually, and at first may not seem serious enough to see a doctor. Regular eye checkups, especially after age 40, are important in order to detect problems in their earliest stages when treatment is most successful.

Common age-related eye diseases such as cataracts, macular degeneration, glaucoma and diabetic retinopathy can be detected with an eye exam. The AAO recommends routine eye exams every 1-2 years after age 50 even if no problems exist.

Your ophthalmologist will use dilating eyedrops to widen your pupils in order to see the inside of your eyes. These usually take 20 to 30 minutes to take effect, so expect to be in the office for at least one hour.

Dilated eyes are more sensitive to sunlight and won’t be able to focus as well for several hours. Be sure to bring your sunglasses. Many people prefer to have a friend or family member drive them home. If you have questions about the procedure, be sure to ask your ophthalmologist.

December 5, 2016