Adults aged 19 to 64 should have an eye exam at least every two years, and people with diabetes should have an eye exam at least once a year. Other health conditions evaluated by your optometrist may also require more frequent eye exams. As most people age, their visual needs change. If you're 60 years old or older, it's recommended to have your eyes checked every one to two years.
Most adults aged 20 to 39 should have a comprehensive eye exam every two to three years. During this exam, your optometrist will use several instruments, illuminate your eyes with bright lights and ask you to look through a variety of lenses. Dilating the pupils with eye drops before the exam prevents the pupils from getting smaller when the doctor illuminates the eye. If you can't see in certain areas, looking at the pattern of visual field loss can help your eye doctor diagnose your eye condition.
Just like you get regular dental checkups and exams, eye exams are an essential part of maintaining your health. If you are concerned about the cost of the eye exam, discuss payment options with your clinic and see if they accept insurance. In many cases, don't wait for something to go wrong before seeing an eye doctor; preventing eye conditions can be easier than treating them. If the eye exam shows other abnormal results, your doctor will discuss next steps with you to perform further tests or treat an underlying condition.
Not everyone has been taught the need for regular eye exams for their overall health and well-being. At the end of the eye exam, you and your doctor will discuss the results of all tests, including evaluating your vision, your risk of eye diseases, and the preventive measures you can take to protect your vision. Just as it's essential that you have regular eye exams, your child should also see their eye doctor regularly. A number of factors can determine how often an eye exam is needed, such as age, health status, and risk of developing eye problems. If you don't currently wear contact lenses and are interested in exploring the option, let your eye doctor know before the exam.
Add an eye exam to your calendar and complete another piece of your personal health and wellness puzzle. If your child wears glasses, they'll need an eye exam every six months or a year to check that the prescription is still correct. This is why most optometrists and ophthalmologists recommend comprehensive eye exams at least once every two to three years.