In order to maintain healthy eyes you must have routine eye exams. Regular check-ups will detect issues that could later become serious and vision-threatening if not diagnosed and treated.
- Young healthy people without a personal or family history of eye problems should schedule routine eye exams every two or three years. As we age we become more at risk for many common eye and medical diseases; therefore, having an annual eye exam is very important.
- For people who already wear glasses and contacts a yearly exam is especially important.
- People with diabetes or a family history of eye disease should have their eyes examined at least once a year. Diabetes in particular can lead to very serious eye complications. Certain professions require eye exams – pilots and military personnel, among others.
If you experience any changes in your vision between regularly scheduled visits, you should schedule an appointment at The Reeves Eye Institute as soon as possible. Early detection and treatment of problems is key to preventing loss of vision.
Common Eye Conditions
PresbyopiaPresbyopia is a condition that typically becomes noticeable for most people around age 45. In children and young adults, the lens inside the eye can easily focus on distant and near objects. With age, the lens loses its ability to focus adequately.
Although presbyopia is not completely understood, it is thought that the lens and its supporting structures lose the ability to make the lens longer during close vision effort. To compensate, affected individuals usually find that holding reading material further away makes the image clearer. Ultimately, aids such as reading glasses are typically needed by the mid-forties.
Besides glasses, presbyopia can be dealt with in a number of ways. Options include: monovision and multifocal contact lenses, monovision laser vision correction, and new presbyopia correcting implant lenses.
MyopiaNearsighted individuals typically have problems seeing well at a distance and are forced to wear glasses or contact lenses. The nearsighted eye is usually longer than a normal eye, and its cornea may also be steeper. Therefore, when light passes through the cornea and lens, it is focused in front of the retina. This will make distant images appear blurred.
There are several refractive surgery solutions available to correct nearly all levels of nearsightedness.
HyperopiaFarsighted individuals typically develop problems reading up close before the age of 40. The farsighted eye is usually slightly shorter than a normal eye and may have a flatter cornea. Thus, the light of distant objects focuses behind the retina unless the natural lens can compensate fully. Near objects require even greater focusing power to be seen clearly and therefore, blur more easily.
LASIK, Refractive Lens Exchange and Contact lenses are a few of the options available to correct farsightedness.
AstigmatismAsymmetric steepening of the cornea or natural lens causes light to be focused unevenly, which is the main optical problem in astigmatism. To individuals with uncorrected astigmatism, images may look blurry or shadowed. Astigmatism can accompany any form of refractive error and is very common.
Astigmatism can be corrected with glasses, contact lenses, corneal relaxing incisions, laser vision correction, and special implant lenses.