Comprehensive Eye Exams
Regular eye exams are a valuable tool in maintaining eye health by detecting and preventing disease. Some diseases, such as cataracts and glaucoma, develop gradually without causing pain or vision loss, so patients may not notice that anything is wrong until significant and irreversible damage is done. Early detection of eye diseases often allows for a choice of treatment options and reduced risk of permanent damage.
Who should get an eye exam?
Patients should see their doctor for a comprehensive eye exam every one to three years, depending on their age, risk of disease and overall physical condition. Children should have regular tests to ensure the proper development of their vision and prevent any interference with their academic achievements. Older adults are often at a higher risk for eye conditions such as glaucoma, macular degeneration and cataracts. Even if your eyes are healthy, you should still have a regular eye exam to detect any problems as soon as possible and begin necessary treatment.
What happens during an eye exam?
Only your eye doctor can perform a comprehensive eye examination to evaluate the overall health of the eye. During the exam, we will evaluate your eyes for refractive errors (conditions corrected with glasses and contact lenses), as well as conditions such as:
- Diabetic eye disease
- Macular Degeneration
A comprehensive eye exam is a series of tests that examine all aspects of the eye, from front to back. These tests are performed in our office and are safe for all patients. You should expect to spend about one hour in the office.
We believe in a team approach to eye care. This means that several medical professionals will participate in your exam, including a certified ophthalmic assistant, a technician, and the doctor. A variety of computerized tests are performed by these individuals to increase the accuracy of our findings.
In most patients, we use eye drops to dilate the pupils to permit a thorough evaluation of both the front and the back (retina) of the eyes. All patients receive a glaucoma test, which is painless and takes seconds to perform.
In some cases, further testing may be ordered by our doctors. These include computerized visual field testing, optic nerve imaging, fundus photography, corneal pachymetry and ophthalmic ultrasound, all of which are performed in our office.
The doctors and staff of the Coastal Jersey Eye Center are committed to helping you fully understand your diagnosis and treatment plan.
Common Eye Conditions
The most common eye conditions diagnosed during a comprehensive eye exam involve refractive errors that cause blurry vision. These conditions affect millions of people in the United States and often get progressively worse with age. Fortunately, refractive errors can be easily treated to let patients enjoy clear vision at all distances.
- Nearsightedness, or myopia, is a refractive condition in which nearby objects are clear and distant objects appear blurry. Myopia affects nearly one-third of all people in the U.S. to some degree, with symptoms often appearing in teens and pre-teens. Patients with myopia have difficulty focusing on objects in the distance, such as a chalkboard or TV. Academic performance can be negatively affected by uncorrected or improperly corrected myopia. Myopic children and teenagers should be examined annually, since eyeglass changes occur frequently.
- Farsightedness, or hyperopia, is a condition in which the eye focuses on distant objects better than on objects closer to the eye, so nearby objects appear blurry. This refractive condition occurs most commonly in people in their middle to later years.
- Astigmatism occurs when the cornea is curved slightly in one direction more than another due to slight imperfections in shape. In addition to blurred vision, patients with astigmatism may also experience headaches, eye strain and fatigue. The severity of symptoms depends on the degree of astigmatism.
- Presbyopia is the loss of ability to see clearly to read or do other tasks up close. This problem occurs in all individuals, sometime between one’s mid-30’s to late 40’s.
All of these refractive conditions can be effectively treated with eyeglasses and contact lenses. Our optical dispensary, Classic Eyewear, offers patients a wide selection of frame styles, lenses and enhancements (coatings and lens treatments including anti-reflective coating, polarized lenses, etc.) and contact lenses from all the major manufacturers.
Classic Eyewear has a full service lab to fabricate your eyewear by our skilled opticians.