No matter how old you are, regular visits to your doctor are essential for staying healthy. But it isn’t enough to see your primary care physician once a year.
Just like you need regular dentist appointments to make sure your teeth are healthy, you need regular eye exams to make sure your eyes are healthy as well. Most people with refractive errors see their eye doctor about once a year to update their prescription.
Even if you’ve never needed glasses, you should have regular eye exams. This is especially true for anyone who is over the age of 40.
When you’re 40 or older, you have a higher risk for several age-related eye conditions that you need to be aware of to keep your eyes healthy.
Keep reading to learn more about why it’s important to see your ophthalmologist!
Seeing an Ophthalmologist
Not all eye doctors are the same. Seeing an optometrist helps if you need to check your visual acuity or need an up-to-date glasses prescription.
They can also give eye exams that can spot some common eye conditions. They have limited ability when it comes to assessing treatment for eye diseases.
Ophthalmologists, on the other hand, have a medical degree. They can diagnose and treat almost all eye diseases that may come up during an eye exam.
If you’re a young adult who’s otherwise not at high risk for any hereditary eye conditions like glaucoma, macular degeneration, and diabetic retinopathy, seeing an optometrist every one to two years is probably enough. But if you have a family history or a pre-existing condition, you should see your ophthalmologist more often.
This may be as often as once a year or even once every six months. Check with your eye doctor to determine how often to see them based on their recommendation.
At the very least, if you’re over 60 years old, you should have yearly eye exams. Regular eye exams will ensure that your eyes are healthy.
Consult a Professional About All Eye Issues
Seeing an ophthalmologist regularly is an excellent idea for adults who are at high risk for eye diseases. But having an ophthalmologist as your regular eye doctor can be helpful no matter what your age.
Ophthalmologists are better equipped to help with more serious age-related conditions. They can also help when it comes to helping with any minor eye issues as well.
They can recommend and prescribe treatments for dry eye syndrome. Your ophthalmologist can also diagnose any eyesight changes you may experience during pregnancy and even advise on cosmetic issues.
At New England Eye Center, we also offer oculoplastic surgery for brow lifts, droopy eyelids, and prescriptions for cosmetic contacts and eyebrow growth serum. If you’re searching for a permanent vision correction solution, we also perform procedures like LASIK and PRK.
Seeing an ophthalmologist as your regular eye doctor gives you all these services in the same place while also offering comprehensive eye care and treatment for many eye conditions.
Make the Lifestyle Changes You Need
Certain lifestyle choices can exacerbate many age-related eye conditions. These choices can also increase your risk for eye conditions like glaucoma, diabetic retinopathy, cataracts, and macular degeneration.
General health issues like high blood sugar, cholesterol, and blood pressure can affect your eyes as well as the rest of your body. As a medical professional, an ophthalmologist can prescribe the medications and lifestyle changes you need to lower your risk for certain eye conditions while also considering your overall health.
They can take in your medical history as a whole and recommend changes and treatments compatible with you and any pre-existing conditions you may have. Just knowing how to change things in your daily life can make a world of difference in preventing and managing eye disease.
Regular Eye Exams Can Save Your Vision
When it comes to eye health, it’s all about preventative maintenance. The reason anyone at risk for diseases like glaucoma, macular degeneration, and diabetic retinopathy should have regular eye exams is to catch these diseases early.
These conditions can cause irreparable vision loss and present little to no symptoms in their early stages. By the time you notice any visual symptoms, you cannot repair the damage done.
The only way to spot these conditions early is through regular comprehensive eye exams. The more comprehensive these eye exams are, the earlier you can detect any conditions.
Early detection leads to early treatment. In the case of a condition like glaucoma, this can make a world of difference.
It may even mean preserving your remaining vision. If you have high eye pressure, it can indicate the beginnings of glaucoma.
This could be before damage has occurred in the optic nerve. In these cases, you may be able to prevent the disease before it develops.
Seeing any damage to certain parts of the eye can be difficult, though, at least without specialized equipment. Luckily, New England Eye Center has top-of-the-line scanning equipment.
This state-of-the-art equipment allows us to detect the smallest of aberrations. This allows your doctor to see early signs of any issues and keep track of their progression.
When you’re diagnosed with an eye disease, your ophthalmologist can recommend prompt treatment, often at their office or facility. They’ll work with you to find a treatment plan that works for you and slows or even stops any further damage from the disease.
Simply put, early detection of eye diseases can save your vision. And prompt detection and treatment require regular comprehensive eye exams from an eye care professional.
If you can’t remember the last time you saw your ophthalmologist, there’s a good chance that it’s been too long. Keeping your eyes safe and healthy requires regular eye examinations at any age.
Even if you’ve struggled to keep up with your eye health in the past, you can make it a priority now. Schedule an appointment at New England Eye Center in Boston, MA, with one of our experienced ophthalmologists today!
There’s never a wrong time to start an eye care regimen!