You probably know you should have a physical every year and see your dentist twice annually, but how often should you see your eye doctor? It’s important to have regular eye exams, at which your doctor checks not just visual acuity but also your overall eye health. Has it been a while since you saw your eye doctor? Here are some signs it’s time to make an appointment.
- If you have red, dry, itchy eyes, see your eye doctor for help. It could be allergies, but you won’t really know until you see the doctor. Sometimes people experience itching, burning, running, and red eyes as a response to allergens, even if they never sneeze or sniffle. Over-the-counter drops may help you, but an eye doctor can advise you if you need something stronger or if you should see an allergist. On the other hand, you could also have an eye infection or an injury to your eye, and in either case, you should see your doctor.
- Any time you experience a vision change, it’s time to make an eye appointment. If it’s getting harder to read the text in books, on menus, or on road signs, you may need corrective eyewear, like glasses or contacts. On the other hand, if blurriness or unfocused vision has come on suddenly, it could mean there’s a bigger health issue at play. If you’re seeing things like the specks called floaters or flashes of light, it could be just part of the aging process or there could be something seriously wrong. Seeing your doctor will help determine what’s going on with your vision.
- Frequent headaches may mean your eyes need help. Headaches have many different causes, but recurrent headaches could point to a shift in your vision. If your cornea and lens aren’t focusing properly, it can put a strain on the small muscles in your eyes and cause headaches. You could be experiencing computer vision syndrome (CVS) if your screen time causes a strain on your eyes. In that case, it’s helpful to follow the 20-20-20 rule. Every 20 minutes, look at something 20 feet away for 20 seconds. Then, make an appointment so that your eye doctor can pinpoint the cause of your headaches.
- Difficulty driving at night is a sign you should talk to your eye doctor. If your vision is fine during the day but you’re finding it hard to see in dim light or when driving at night, it could be the first symptom of a cataract.
- If it’s been a long time since your last eye exam, go ahead and schedule another. For most adults, an eye exam every two years is probably enough. If you’re at high risk for eye disease or you’re over 65 years old, though, your doctor may want to see you every year. Early diagnosis is the key to the successful treatment of eye diseases like cataracts, diabetic retinopathy, glaucoma, and age-related macular degeneration, but these can take a while to develop any symptoms. Because you may not notice anything wrong, it’s wise to have an expert check out your eyes regularly.
When you need an eye exam, trust Boulder Eye Surgeons to care for your eyes. Having served Boulder, Colorado, and the surrounding area since 1997, Boulder Eye Surgeons utilizes state-of-the-art technology to provide comprehensive medical and surgical eye care. We’re committed to enhancing the quality of life through exceptional patient care, and our doctors and staff members are second to none. Request an appointment with our community-oriented practice to learn how we work to understand your needs and exceed your expectations, call us at (303) 943-1483, or contact us through our website.