They say your eyes are the windows to the soul. They are also the windows to your health because they allow your eye doctor to see what’s going on inside you.
Did you know your eyes are the only part of your body where eye doctors can look directly at internal, functioning blood vessels? These offer clues and warnings of serious diseases such as high blood pressure, heart disease, stroke, multiple sclerosis (MS), diabetes, and even some types of cancer.
A comprehensive eye exam will evaluate not only how well you see, but also identify potential eye diseases which are often silent or asymptomatic. Routine eye examinations are an essential part of preventative health care. Early diagnosis and treatment of eye and vision problems are important for maintaining not only good vision, but also overall health.
During an exam, a series of tests designed to help evaluate your vision and eye health are performed. Some of these tests may include but are not limited to:
Monocular Refraction | Binocular Refraction | EOM Evaluation | Pupil Reaction Check | Tear Film Evaluation | Eye Alignment Assessment | Slit Lamp Biomicroscopy | Internal Eye Exam | Digital Retinal Photos | Dry Eye/Allergy Screening | Systemic Disease Consultation | Glaucoma Screening | Visual Field Testing | Intraocular Pressure | Optic Nerve Head Evaluation | Ask Your Eye Doctor
First we determine the correct prescription for each eye individually, using a series of lenses to find the best prescription to optimize the clearest vision and visual comfort.
Once the prescription of each eye is determined alone, we measure both eyes together to find the right balance between the two eyes. An imbalanced refraction can cause headaches, eyestrain, and double vision.
The muscles that move your eyes are controlled by nerves that travel through your brain. Any problems with eye movement may be due to deeper neural problems or systemic disease.
A simple test of the way the pupil behaves to light gives a lot of clues to the function of the eye as a whole, and may be used to discover glaucoma, retinal tears, inflammation behind the eye, and even problems in the brain.
The tear film covering the surface of the eye actually is a complex system. A basic evaluation of the health and integrity of this surface will help to diagnose corneal conditions such as dry eye.
A slight tendency of the eyes to drift out of alignment can cause headaches, eyestrain, double vision, or difficulty reading or using a computer.
This allows us to assess the health of the external eye structures such as the eyelids, conjunctiva, cornea, iris, and lens. It also helps to diagnose conditions such as eye injuries, infections, or problems of the inner structures of the eyes, like cataracts.
Examination of the inside of the eye allows us to see structures such as the optic nerve, retinal blood vessels, macula, and retina. If needed, we can also dilate the pupil, which allows us to see a much wider area of the retina.
Newer technology is allowing us to take high-resolution images of the back of the eye. This allows us to see the retina in more detail and can help detect or confirm our internal exam findings of conditions such as macular degeneration, glaucoma, and diabetic retinopathy. Even if everything is normal, taking the pictures on a regular basis will allow us to monitor the internal health of the eye and help detect any subtle changes. The retinal photos are available at an additional charge of only $15.
Many people suffer from chronic dry eye (keratoconjunctivitis sicca) or allergic conjunctivitis and attribute the symptoms of blurry or fluctuating vision, redness, blur, pain, itching, and tearing to other conditions. These problems are not always simple to treat, but therapies are constantly improving, and we have methods available now for treating both.
Through different parts of the exam, we are able to see if any systemic conditions that you are being treated for may be causing problems in the eyes, such as dry eye or retinal damage. We will review your list of medications to determine if there are any ocular or visual side effects, and treat those side effects, if necessary. We also may be able to uncover problems like diabetes and elevated cholesterol that were not previously diagnosed. We will work with your primary care physician to properly manage the eye condition and the systemic condition that it is linked to.
Glaucoma is a disease that has no noticeable symptoms until later stages. It causes slow vision loss beginning from the outside in. By the time vision loss is noticed, it is often too late. Once vision is lost from glaucoma, it cannot be restored. Various screening tests are performed during a routine exam to help detect early signs of glaucoma.
We will do a basic screening of your peripheral vision. If necessary, we can also do a more detailed assessment of the visual field using a computerized testing device.
This is the classic sign of glaucoma: high pressure inside the eye. New research has found that this is no longer the only way to detect glaucoma, and that glaucoma may be present even with low eye pressure.
The optic nerve is where the eye connects to the brain. In an eye with glaucoma, the optic nerve takes on a certain shape as damage is done to the nerve tissue inside the eye.
Even if you don’t have any vision problems, it is important to schedule yearly comprehensive eye exams with your eye doctor. This is an easy step you can take to help protect your vision and overall health.
Contact Optiko Eyewear today to schedule an eye exam.